Sales of diesel vehicles in Europe have started to fall as bans on diesel vehicles look set to be rolled out.
In the aftermath of Volkswagen’s dieselgate scandal, public sentiment and demand in diesels across Europe has started to falter as consumers learn about the toxic nitrogen oxide emissions produced by diesels.
Automotive News reports that in Germany, a leader in diesel-vehicle adoption, diesel sales accounted for 40 per cent of the new-car market in March, a significant decrease on the 45.8 per cent of 2016 and 48.1 per cent of 2012. In Europe, sales dropped from 50 per cent of the market to 46 per cent.
Starting next year, there’s a possibility that Stuttgart could prevent 3-year-old diesel vehicles from entering city limits on certain days, and it is likely that Munich could follow suit shortly after. The mayors of Paris, Madrid, Athens and Mexico City have also pledged to ban diesel vehicles by the year 2025.
This changing public perception of diesel vehicles will represent a massive hurdle for automakers as many customers will shy aware from purchasing a diesel if there’s a chance it could be banned within a few years.
According to transportation law specialist Tobias Ulbrich, “In an environment where bans are an immediate threat, those people that regularly drive in the major metropolitan areas are not going to purchase a diesel under any circumstance — no matter how clean manufacturers claim these cars allegedly are.”