In Paris, the city known for its progressive environmental policies, a new initiative has been introduced that will impact almost 900.000 SUVs. Anne Hidalgo, the mayor of Paris, has launched a proposal for an increase in parking fees, specifically aimed at heavier vehicles. This measure, which will be presented to the Parisian population in 2024, is the next step in reducing polluting vehicles in the French capital.
According to AAA Data data collected on behalf of Les Echos, this change would affect approximately 16% of vehicles in Ile-de-France, which amounts to exactly 892.336 cars. The focus is on so-called 'sport utility vehicles' (SUVs), which are considered accidental, heavy, space-consuming and polluting. These characteristics make SUVs a concern for urban planners and environmentalists.
The city of Paris has decided to maintain the weight limit for the malus system, which was recently tightened by the French government. This system now applies a limit of 1,6 tons for thermal vehicles and 2 tons for electric SUVs. It is striking that, unlike the national ones, the Paris regulations do not provide an exemption for hybrid models and also address heavier electric SUVs.
The choice for a higher weight limit for electric vehicles is based on the fact that their batteries mean they are on average heavier than their thermal counterparts. A report from the WWF confirms this: electric SUVs weigh an average of 250 kg more than other electric models. Models such as the Skoda Enyaq, Tesla Model Y, Volkswagen ID.4 Pro and Audi Q4 40 E-Tron, which all exceed the 2-ton limit, will be covered by the new scheme.
Interestingly, the scheme excludes certain models, such as the Tesla Model 3 and Audi Q4 35 e-Tron, from the increased parking rates. This decision reflects the city's commitment to protecting family-friendly models. This development in Paris is not just a local issue, but reflects a broader trend in urban environmental policy.
However, Paris' policy is not without controversy. It raises questions about the accessibility of urban areas, especially for families who rely on larger vehicles. Furthermore, owners of electric SUVs may feel disadvantaged as they have so far been encouraged to switch to electric models as a more environmentally friendly alternative.