BMW, Ford, Volkswagen and Honda made headlines last year when they announced a voluntary commitment to follow strict rules in the US when it comes to tailpipe emissions. The four basically volunteered to keep following the rules the Obama administration came with in the field, whereas the Trump administration sought to cancel the previously agreed upon legislation.
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Now, as 23 states in the US are filing a lawsuit to counter the move from the Trump administration, the four are planning on remaining neutral.
Back during the Obama administration, the government decided to impose an annual increase of efficiency for new cars made and sold in the US of 5 percent per year up until 2026. When the Trump administration took over it decided to roll that back to 1.5 percent per year, a move that was to the liking of a number of car makers but not all of them. A number of states have also shown a different position and they joined forces to challenge president Trump’s rule.
To be more precise, 23 states, led by California as well as the District of Columbia have challenged the legislation changes in court and BMW, Honda, Ford and Volkswagen said they are planning to remain neutral on the matter but they would like to be heard “to ensure that any remedy imposed by this court is both appropriate and achievable,” according to Automotive News. The four have struck a voluntary agreement with California last year, in which they agreed to abide to stricter rules.
However, the industry as a whole is far from being on the same page about the matter. Companies like General Motors, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and even Toyota have allegedly sided with the Trump administration in a different lawsuit over whether the federal government can strip California of its right to set zero emission vehicle requirements.
This will, no doubt, be a long legal fight and its outcome will drastically shape the future of the automotive industry.