Fiat to pay Tesla in a deal to meet European Union emission standards

'Fiat to pool with Tesla to avoid EU fines'

FIAT Chrysler (FCA) yesterday confirmed that it is to pay hundreds of millions of dollars to Tesla, the zero-emissions electric carmaker, to avoid getting hit by European Commission fines.

It would seem that by counting Teslas cars, which produce zero emissions, FCA will be able to bring down its average to a permissible level.

The automaker formed an open pool with Tesla on February 25, the FT said, citing a declaration with the European Commission, allowing FCA to include Tesla vehicles to help lower its average emissions across its model lineup.

Tesla did not respond to requests for comment.

Fiat may be prepared to pay more than 500 million euros as part of the deal.

The European Union has set a target for average carbon dioxide emissions of 95 grams per kilometre for each new auto, to be achieved by 2021.

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From 2020, the EU's target for average Carbon dioxide emissions is 95g/km - a way below FCA's average previous year of 123g/km.

Indeed, for FCA, paying Tesla to pool their vehicles costs less than paying a hefty fine to the EU.

The Italian-American carmaker is behind on meeting the new standard, and the so-called open pool option available at European Union allows automakers to group their fleets together to meet the targets.

The money earned from emissions credits have been a valuable source of earnings for Tesla, allowing it to post quarterly profits when it would have registered a loss. The electric automaker made $103 million selling emissions credits in 2018, $280 million in 2017, and $215 million in 2016, according to a recent financial filing.

FCA said it would "optimise the options for compliance the regulations offer". FCA has also lagged behind other carmakers in electric vehicle development, further raising its emissions profile. The electric automaker earned $103.4m a year ago by selling zero emissions vehicle credits under a programme operated in its home state of California.

Other vehicle companies teaming up for the sake of regulations include Mazda Motor Corp and Toyota Motor Corp.

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