Brazil’s Rota 2030 pushing safer, more sustainable cars
Brazil’s long-awaited Rota 2030 automotive industry policy will improve much needed safety and sustainability in the country’s growing vehicle market over the next 15 years if congress ends up approving the provisional measure signed by President Michel Temer in early July.
Details of the 2018-2032 policy will be published in the country’s official gazette at the beginning of August and congress should be voting on the possible law on November 16, according to local car manufacturer association Anfavea president Antonio Megale.
“Under Rota 2030, manufacturers will have to meet new energy efficiency and safety standards. And if they don’t, they will need to pay fines,” Megale was quoted as saying by local news service Estadao.
The new policy will be divided into three phases, being phase I (2018-2022), phase II (2023-2027) and phase III (2028-2032).
Several car safety policies will be mandated with gradual implementation expected over each five-year cycle. For instance, during phase I (from 2020-2022), every car sold in Brazil will need to have stability and traction control.
Other requirements seen over the short-term are Isofix child-safe seats, as well as backrests and three-point seat belts for middle passengers of rear seats. Vehicle construction will also be better as side impact tests will be mandatory.
According to local automotive engineering association AEA president Edson Orikassa, Brazilian cars are following the path of the European and North American markets.
For one, emergency braking systems have just become mandatory in the US, something now being considered in Brazil. Moreover, daytime headlights (DLR) and lane tracking are also being considered, being features which are not even required in Europe.
Taking this into consideration, some of the more premium models may start to gain traction in Brazil as many of them are already equipped with these features.
During phase I, automakers will be required to improve energy efficiency by 11%, thus directly affecting fuel consumption. As this efficiency requirement is measured across all car models, automakers will be able to offset high fuel consuming vehicles with "green" models.
"This will result in more hybrid and electric vehicles (EV) being offered to compensate for the less efficient ones,"says Orikassa. To help push the agenda even further, Rota 2030 will give a 50% discount on the IPI industrialized goods tax for these types of vehicles.
Among the "green" models coming to Brazil by 2019 are the Chevrolet Bolt and Nissan Leaf. Toyota is also preparing a hybrid Prius which runs on both electricity and flex-fuel (gasoline and ethanol).
Toyota Prius electric-flex hybrid (Source: Toyota)
Other fuel savings changes could include turbocharged engines, direct fuel injection, CVT gearboxes, better aerodynamics, and the use of better quality steel which is lighter in weight.
Finally, to stimulate innovation, the federal government will also grant the automobile industry up to 1.5bn reais (US$398mn) in tax credit every year auto-makers jointly invest at least 5bn reais in research and development.