The Norwegian government is now taking the levels of CO2 emissions of new vehicles into account when it comes to the purchase price.
Since 1 July 2017, the price of certain motorbikes has increased in Norway by as much as several thousand euros, after the government decided to base the amount of tax to be paid for purchasing a new vehicle on CO2 emissions, as reported by motomag.com.
Serious impact on the price of motorbikes
This new method of calculating taxes has led to drastic increases in the purchasing price of certain models of motorbike, in particular the Yamaha MT-10 SP, which has gone up by 4,420 euros, the Kawasaki Z900 (+4,117 euros) and Guzzi Audace motorbikes which cost now 8,824 euros more due to their CO2 emissions being too high.
Concerns from the NMCU
The Norwegian Motorcyclists’ Union (NMCU) is worried about the gradual disappearance of these particular models in Norway, and has contacted the various constructors affected to ask them to reduce the levels of CO2 emissions of their vehicles.
Morten Hansen, general secretary of the NMCU and spokesman for this action, said that he was surprised to find that these motorbikes emitted more CO2 than a large Volvo XC90 7-seater SUV, for example. This is a very much a problem in a country where the environment is a high priority, and could have a negative impact on the use of motorbikes in general, even though the majority of two-wheeled forms of transport emit reasonable levels of CO2, according to the NCMU.
Decision being contested
The anti-pollution argument behind this new governmental measure has provoked various reactions from bikers, who say that two-wheeled transport provides advantages in terms of improved traffic flow and reduced journey times. They also underlined the fact that the level of particle emission – in particular linked to tyre and brake wear – is lower from motorbikes than cars. These are genuine ecological arguments, but they are less easy to quantify than the levels of CO2 emissions of a vehicle.
The decision will no doubt have an impact on motorbike use and also on the overall motorised two-wheeler industry in general, and according to the NMCU could be adopted in the near future by other European governments.
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