PARIS -- Three of France’s most popular battery-electric vehicles, the Dacia Spring minicar, the Tesla Model 3 and the MG4 compact car, will lose their eligibility for EV incentives under new requirements that favor cars made in France and Europe over those made in China.
All three of those models are built in China and imported to France. Under new eligibility requirements announced this year, the amount of carbon dioxide emissions in the manufacturing process will be taken into account.
Vehicles produced in China, where a majority of energy comes from fossil fuels, mostly coal, are at a significant disadvantage under the new program.
The European Commission and some automakers have expressed worries about inexpensive cars from China, especially EVs, taking market share from European-built cars. The commission has opened an investigation of Beijing's support for domestic EV makers, potentially resulting in new tariffs.
The list of eligible models, released Thursday by the French government, includes 24 BEVs from Stellantis and five from Renault. Tesla’s Model Y, which is built in Germany, is eligible for the bonus, but the Chinese-built Model 3 is not. Similarly, Smart’s #1 model, built in China, is not on the list, but the ForTwo, built in France, is.
Other models made in China, such as the BMW iX3, would not be eligible for incentives also because they are too expensive.