ZF TRW says it remains convinced CO2 emissions reduction is on an irreversible downward path as regulators flex ever stronger muscles when it comes to pollution.
The European Commission has set the ambitious target of 95g of CO2 emissions per 100km by 2021 – although some suppliers estimate they can even surpass that figure with smaller cars – and the newly-merged ZF TRW says it sees no reason to doubt pollution scrutiny will continue.
“Long term trend has to be continued reduction in CO2 emissions,” ZF TRW EVP active and safety technology, Peter Lake told just-auto at the recent global media briefing at ADAC’s proving ground at Potsdam near Berlin.
“We are on a course – that is not going to change. It may be the case if the market is bad the regulators will potentially delay some things if circumstances require, but I don’t think there is any intention to change. It will happen.
“The [US] government is showing leadership and has a firm intention to drive CO2 emissions down.”
Increasingly draconian emissions diktats from Brussels are driving opportunities for suppliers and this, coupled with significantly recovering markets from the so-called great recession in the developed world, is driving growth, although BRIC regions such as Russia and South America remain problematic.
“The depths of the recession in 2008, I don’t like to countenance we would see that again,” said Lake. “But some markets are very difficult – the passenger car market is down 30% [in South America for example].
“There will be cycles. Developed markets are relatively static. Europe [however] is progressively recovering. We are seeing some green shoots.”
China is currently experiencing stock market difficulties, but Lake cites supplier opportunity as vehicle content in the country generally aligns with that of Europe after around five years.
“Volume is the driver of cost reduction,” the EVP noted. “It is a virtuous circle.”
Lake will become a member of the ZF TRW board from 1 October.