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AfMA has welcomed the news that Australia’s first independent on-road emissions and fuel consumption vehicle testing program will soon begin operating in Geelong, Victoria. 

AfMA has long been a leading advocate for setting up real-world testing in Australia. 

“No lab test can replicate on-road driving,” says Executive Director Mace Hartley. 

“The differences between lab test results and real on-road driving emissions and fuel consumption can vary over 30% from vehicle to vehicle. Real-world testing will give fleet managers much more relevant information when completing total cost of ownership comparisons on vehicles, and will help to improve their budget management and help meet environmental targets.” 

The Australian Government has provided $14 million to fund the Real-World Testing Program over four years from mid-2023 to mid-2027.  

The Australian Automobile Association will run the program on behalf of the government.  

The AAA has established an in-house team and has hired specialist testing contractors. Vehicles are being sourced and prepared for testing, which will begin this month.  

The program will test 200 cars, SUVs, utes, and vans over the next four years. It will use a 93km test drive route in and around Geelong that includes urban and rural roads, as well as a stretch of motorway. 

Test drives will follow prescribed testing protocols based on the European Commission’s Real Driving Emissions test procedure, adapted for Australian driving conditions and speed limits. Test results will be the average of at least two full-length test drives. 

The program will prioritise high-selling vehicles and will select the most popular variant within a model’s line-up for testing. Fleets will also be able to suggest vehicles for testing.   

The program is aiming for broad market coverage to ensure as many consumers as possible can benefit from the results as soon as possible.

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