Canadian automaker and dealer groups push back on EV targets

by | Dec 15, 2023 | 0 comments

electric vehicle

Sales targets for zero-emissions vehicles (ZEVs) will not be achievable, say Canadian automaker and car dealer associations.

Industry groups Canadian Automobile Dealers Association, the Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association, and Global Automakers of Canada say that targets soon to be released by Environment and Climate Change Canada will not be achievable without more ambitious government efforts.

Taking to Canada’s Parliament Hill to make their case, the groups say they’re committed to EVs, but need more from government to make it work, emphasizing affordability and infrastructure issues around EVs.

“Canadians expect certainty that they can afford, use, and charge their EVs in a manner that suits their different lifestyles and geographical requirements before making one of the most important purchasing decisions in their lives.

“Further, with the current high interest rates and high inflation severely impacting consumer affordability, many consumers lack the means to purchase EVs, as evidenced by the rising inventory levels on our members’ lots. Instead of attempting to dictate what individuals have to purchase, we suggest government focus on creating the right set of circumstances to stimulate demand,” said Tim Reuss, President and CEO, Canadian Automobile Dealers Association.

Perhaps not coincidentally, the position was released only days after the release of an economic impact study that highlighted the contributions of the car dealer sector to Canada’s economy:

  • Directly employed 167,790 people, 56 percent of whom were in jobs requiring a post-secondary credential, professional certification or significant experience.
  • Recorded total revenues of $151.5 billion, of which 54 percent was attributable to the sale of new vehicles and the remainder was attributable to the sale of parts, accessories, used vehicles and maintenance services.
  • Generated $2,6 billion in Federal tax, $2,7 billion provincial/territorial tax, and $881million in municipal taxes.

“Regulating vehicle sales will make life even more unaffordable for Canadians,” said Brian Kingston, President & CEO, Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association. “Achieving 100% ZEV sales requires a comprehensive, long-term plan to support ZEV adoption that includes stronger consumer purchase incentives, a widespread public charging network, and enhancements to the electricity grid to prepare Canada for more ZEVs on the road.”

“The automotive industry is fully committed to decarbonizing its products – there is no turning back,” said David Adams, President & CEO, Global Automakers of Canada. 

“With the ambitious ZEV targets we are anticipating in the final regulation, we will need a comprehensive and meaningful dialogue between government, the automakers, and utilities to ensure that we have the necessary ecosystem to support mass consumer adoption of ZEVs across all segments over short time horizons, along with data-driven progress monitoring on these necessary conditions.”


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