On 29 June, European Commissioners Elżbieta Bieńkowska and Günther Oettinger joined racing champion Tom Kristensen to call for higher standards for mobility in Europe at the FIA Summer Cocktail.
Elżbieta Bieńkowska, Commissioner for the Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, noted the striking similarity of the defeat device scandal to the banking crisis and insisted on a three step programme to ensure that market confidence is restored. She insisted on the need for the auto industry to show all their cards so that constructive progress could be made. Her plans include the need to reform the EU’s type-approval and market surveillance system. She further endorsed long-term investment in a low-carbon transport system and a clear policy target for zero emission vehicles. Her final step was to make the vehicle testing regime fit for the future, through the real-driving emissions packages and the newly approved test cycle for CO2.
Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, has made a firm commitment to include consumer voices in his work on the development of the connected car market. In his speech, he noted that it is the 350 million drivers in Europe that are the investors in the automotive market and that the industry has a responsibility to create vehicles that respond to consumer needs. He further voiced his support for data protection with connected cars and European digital civil rights. He concluded with the need to define who owns the data that connected cars generate, be it the driver, the auto manufacturer, or the telecoms provider.
Tom Kristensen, WEC World Champion and 9 time racing champion of 24 Hours of Le Mans, highlighted the need for constant training and updating of road safety knowledge to keep road users aware of changing rules, new technologies and new requirements on drivers. He emphasised that traffic education and driver training is a lifelong endeavour. He elaborated that new technologies are increasingly becoming the norm and drivers need additional information on how these technologies affect the rules of the road.
The FIA’s annual Summer Cocktail at the Bibliothèque Solvay brought together nearly 150 policymakers, European Automobile Clubs and stakeholders in the mobility community of Brussels.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About FIA Region I
FIA Region I is a consumer body representing 112 Motoring and Touring Clubs and their 37 million members from across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The FIA represents the interests of our members as motorists, riders, pedestrians and passengers. FIA Region I is working to ensure safe, affordable, clean and efficient mobility for all. www.fiaregion1.com