Wider, taller, heavier: evolution of light duty vehicle size over generations

Vehicle size and weight has evolved significantly in the last decades, with vehicle getting larger, taller and substantially heavier. The evidence gathered in this paper shows that the growing share of SUVs is drastically accelerating the size and weight increase trends and threatens the EU CO2 improvement rates. This report suggests that it is time to start considering regulating average vehicle weight. Corporate average weight reduction targets might be a good option to strongly encourage weight-reduction strategies. This would benefit not only fuel economy but also safety, road wear, and road occupation, with smaller vehicles expected. It would also decrease the need for high engine power, further reducing vehicle weight.