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Mobility and Transport
News article4 May 2023Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport1 min read

Road transport emissions: Road charging advantages for efficient trailers

The European Commission has today proposed to take into account the effect of trailers on the CO2 emissions of heavy-goods vehicles in road charging schemes that differentiate tolls based on vehicles’ CO2 emissions.

Although a trailer does not consume energy by itself, towing it requires energy from the vehicle to which it is attached. Efficient trailers can benefit both conventional vehicles, by reducing fuel consumption and therefore CO2 emissions, as well as zero-emission vehicles, by increasing their range.

Today’s proposal aims at lowering the operational costs of more efficient trailers and, in doing so, fostering their market uptake.


In 2022, the EU adopted revised road charging rules setting out the obligation to vary charges for heavy-duty vehicles based on their CO2 emissions. While that revision did not cover the effect of trailers on vehicles’ emissions (because of the lack of legal framework for the certification of the trailers’ energy efficiency characteristics), it called for a proposal in this respect once the necessary legal framework was published. The respective legal framework was published later the same year.

Today’s proposal will support the move towards a cleaner fleet of heavy-duty vehicles and help reduce CO2 emissions from the road transport sector while contributing to energy savings. The new system will contribute to the aims of the European Green Deal, the Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy and the REPowerEU plan.

For more information

4 MAY 2023
Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Directive 1999/62/EC, Council Directive 1999/37/EC and Directive (EU) 2019/520 as regards the CO2 emission class of heavy-duty vehicles with trailers [COM(2023) 189]


Publication date
4 May 2023
Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport