2 devastating charts show how the Volkswagen scandal could kill diesel in Europe

Car analysts are sifting through the wreckage of the Volkswagen emissions scandal trying to work out what exactly happened and what comes next.

A Goldman Sachs note sent to clients on Thursday has two charts that show just how bad the fallout from the whole thing could be for the entire European car industry.

The first shows how many diesels cars pass the current European emissions tests, seen in the red box (the letters refer to the type of emission reduction technology each of the cars is using.)

Here’s Goldman on the test:

The “NEDC” is the test currently used in Europe to measure emission levels of light-duty vehicles for regulatory purposes. This test is not reflective of driving reality since (according to the ICCT) the test offers a ‘stylised’ driving speed pattern with low accelerations, constant speed cruises, and many ‘idling’ events. The European Commission has criticised the test as largely underestimating emissions levels of vehicles under real driving conditions.

So, not a great test then. The second chart shows how the same crop of cars would fare under the more stringent, more realistic test — they’re in the tiny red box in the corner that you can barely make out.

A much smaller number pass the test and the coloured in dots show the average emissions for each vehicle category are all non-compliant.

Goldman admits that these 32 cars are not fully representative of the entire industry, but you can see the general trend. It has huge ramifications for the European car industry — 53% of all cars in the continent are diesel.

The EU is already planning a transition to this new test in 2017. But Goldman warns that the Volkswagen emissions scandal has led to “a profound intensification of scrutiny on diesel emissions” and as a result in “a more rapid shift away from diesel.”

In short, the Volkswagen scandal could kill diesel in Europe as regulators and the public turn their noses up at the “dirty” fuel.

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