Nissan, BMW, Ford: Ranking carmakers' readiness for emissions rules

Nissan, BMW, Ford: Ranking carmakers' readiness for emissions rules

The Nissan Leaf
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The Nissan Leaf

Japanese automakers, such as Nissan and Toyota, are leading the world in developing low emissions models and are consequently the manufacturers least likely to be hit by penalties for failing to meet tightening government auto emissions targets.

That is the conclusion of a new report from investor-backed group CDP published last week, which asks firms to publicly disclose details about how they are adapting to environmental risks, in order to help inform investment decisions.

The latest report zeros in on the auto market in an attempt to understand which companies are best prepared for tightening emissions regulations in the European Union, United States and China.

The report reveals that three of the top five companies are Japanese — Nissan, Toyota and Mazda — while France's Renault comes in third and Germany's Daimler ranks joint fifth. These companies are branded as leaders in their field mainly because of their adoption of advanced low emission technologies, such as the Toyota Prius and Nissan's LEAF.

The study focuses specifically on fleet emissions, as they represent 75 percent of total emissions in the industry and are most likely to be covered by law, but are least likely to be reported on by companies.

CDP says the results are designed to show which companies will have a strategic advantage when it comes to complying with emissions regulations.

The report predicts that some of the worst performing companies could face penalties if they fail to accelerate efforts to curb vehicle emissions.

For example, General Motors and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles risk significant penalties in both the E.U. and U.S. potentially equating to $1.7 billion and $574 million respectively, the report said. Ford is also at risk of a penalty in the U.S. of $889 million (£581 million), CDP argues.

"Whilst there is much debate about the implications of the current low oil price, this report shows that as regulation tightens some companies risk high financial penalties," said Paul Dickinson, executive chairman of CDP in a statement.

"These companies' shares are held in the portfolios of the world's largest institutional investors and the way they approach regulation and invest in future technologies will affect financial performance."

Automakers best prepared for tough new emissions laws

1. Nissan (Japan)
2. Toyota (Japan)
3. Renault (France)
4. Mazda (Japan)
5. Daimler (Germany)
6. Volkswagen (Germany)
7. Honda (Japan)
8. BMW (Germany)
9. PSA Peugot Citroen (France)
10. Ford - USA
11. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles - Italy
12. General Motors -USA
13. Hyundai -South Korea
14. Tata Motors -India

Editor's note: This article originally appeared at Business Green.