Navigation path

Left navigation

Additional tools

Other available languages: FR DE IT


Brussels, 10th November 2010

Commission re-launches CARS 21 high level group for a competitive and sustainable automotive industry

Today, the re-launched CARS 21 High Level Group meets for the first time in its new form and with a new mission. The European Commission has asked the group to develop a common action plan and a vision for "a competitive EU automotive industry and sustainable mobility and growth in 2020 and beyond." This will contribute to the EU strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, Europe 2020, to the flagship initiatives on resource efficiency and industrial policy (IP/10/1434) and to the EU strategy for clean and energy efficient vehicles (IP/10/473). To reach the objectives set out by the EU, the group has been enlarged to represent the various stakeholders whose involvement is crucial for the accomplishment of its mission. A report published by the Commission today (IP/10/1496) shows that the industry is on track as regards the reduction of CO2 emissions from new cars.

European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani, Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship and chairman of the group stressed the importance of the initiative: "The automobile industry is crucial for Europe as an economy and as a society. We need an ambitious and comprehensive strategy to foster its competitiveness and growth worldwide while ensuring sustainability. By bringing all relevant interests to the same table we will identify policies fit for the future."

The focus of the group will be to advise the Commission in the development of an effective European industrial policy for the automotive sector and in the implementation of the EU's strategy for clean and energy efficient vehicles. Notably, CARS 21 will develop policy recommendations in questions related to the competitiveness and sustainable growth of the automotive industry, and proposals to further the development and take up of clean and energy efficient vehicles in Europe and beyond.

The group in its new form consists of prominent representatives of the automotive industry, trade unions, non-governmental organisations, users, EU Member States, the Commission and other EU institutions (see list of members in the annex). It is chaired by Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani. Other stakeholders, technical experts and a wider audience will be involved through working groups and a public consultation.

The CARS 21 process will be managed through a three-level structure:

  • the high level group (CEOs, Presidents of associations, Ministers, etc.)

  • the “sherpa” group responsible for preparing the input to the high level group

  • the working groups, working on specific topics to be tackled by technical experts.

The group is expected to issue a report in spring 2012.


The “Competitive Automotive Regulatory System for the 21st century” (CARS 21) played an active but informal role in advising on European legislation for the automotive sector in the years following its creation in 2005. The new group is formally established by a Commission Decision of 14 October 2010.

For more information, see CARS 21 website:


Membership CARS 21 high level group

Industry - manufacturers and aftermarket (7)

ACEA: President, 3 car representatives, 1 truck representative

ACEM (motorcycles): 1

CECRA (distribution and repair): 1

Industry – component and energy suppliers (6)

CLEPA (systems and components): 2 representatives

EUROPIA (oil industry): 1

Eurelectric (electricity providers):1

ETRMA (tyres): 1

AECC (aftertreatment): 1

Trade unions, NGOs and users (6)

European Metalworkers’ Federation: 1

Transport and Environment: 1

Institute for European Environmental Policy: 1

Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile: 1

BEUC (consumers): 1

ETSC – European Transport Security Council: 1

Member States (9)

Ministers from Germany, United Kingdom, France, Italy, Spain, Austria, Czech Republic, Poland and Sweden

Committee of Regions & Economic and Social Committee (2)

1 member each

Commission (6)

Antonio Tajani, Chairman, Vice-President, Commissioner for Industry and Entrepreneurship

Siim Kallas, Vice-President, Commissioner for Transport

Neelie Kroes, Vice-President, Commissioner for Digital Agenda

Janez Potočnik, Commissioner for Environment

Connie Hedegaard, Commissioner for Climate Action

Karel de Gucht, Commissioner for Trade

Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for Energy

Side Bar