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Welcome to the European Council for Automotive R&D

This website presents the European automotive industry perspectives on the need for research in light of future challenges based on a vision of products and services for the transport of people and goods on the road network which provide improved safety, energy-efficiency, environmental compatibility and affordability.

This website also presents the European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR) as the European body for collaborative automotive and road transport R&D. EUCAR is an industrial association owned by its members, which are the 15 major European manufacturers of cars, trucks and buses.

EUCAR and its member companies acknowledge the importance of the research work partly funded through national institutions within the EU and through the Framework Programs of the European Commission in which the automotive manufacturers have played a key role from the outset. Over the coming years the industry foresees the need for an even greater level of collaboration and commitment of key players in order to meet the ever-increasing challenges of providing efficient, safe, environmentally friendly, diverse and affordable mobility and transport in a world faced with scarcity of resources such as fossil fuels and raw materials.





Brussels, 14 January 2015 - EUCAR highlights key recommendations for the content and procedure of the 2016/2017 work programmes of Horizon 2020 

EUCAR has issued its recommendations for the research and innovation content of the next work programmes of Horizon 2020 (for 2016 and 2017) directly to the European Commission.

In addition we have issued a short paper highlighting some constructive recommendations for enhancing the procedures for future calls and work programmes.  In particular these are geared towards accelerating the process for starting Horizon 2020 projects and increasing their capacity to support future innovation in the automotive industry.  Recommendations for industrially-relevant research and innovation themes, such as those in the "Mobility For Growth" part of the Transport Work Programme, include:

  • Reflection of the research and innovation needs of all relevant actors in the road transport community through the ongoing cooperation with representative associations and technology platforms
  • Calls for proposals with more explicit formulations of the scope and size of projects
  • Use of the single-stage evaluation procedure
EUCAR and its members will be very glad to discuss these recommendations

with all interested parties to determine a balanced approach for future calls and the continued success of Horizon 2020.


Position paper: Horizon 2020 procedures


Brussels, 5 November 2014 - Automobile manufacturers demonstrate the value of the European Framework Programmes in fostering industrial innovation at the 20th anniversary conference of EUCAR

EUCAR, the European Council for Automotive R&D, marked 20 years since its founding in 1994. Through exhibits and experts’ presentations, EUCAR demonstrated explicitly how projects co-funded by the EU Framework Programmes have contributed to innovation in the automotive sector. Such innovations have helped support growth and jobs in the sector and contributed to meeting societal goals, such as reduction in CO2 and exhaust emissions as well as consistent improvement in road safety.  

Robert-Jan Smits, Director General of DG Research & Innovation in the European Commission, spoke at the Conference Reception, stating, “Europe's road transport industry is truly world-beating. To remain competitive, it needs to be constantly innovative; and that innovation is based on excellent research”. 

On behalf of Industry, Harald J. Wester, Chief Technical Officer of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and CEO of Maserati and Alfa Romeo emphasised some of the achievements of the automotive industry. He stated, “Europe leads the way in clean production, with decreasing quantities of water and energy used to manufacture a vehicle, and much less CO2 and waste produced in the process and lead the world on the end of life product management.”, adding “European cars, vans, trucks and buses are the cleanest, safest and quietest in the world”.

Opening the Conference, EUCAR Chairman Nevio Di Giusto highlighted the progress made in the last 20 years in automotive engineering, in meeting customer expectations and regulatory demands under intensifying global competition. He underlined EUCAR’s role, stating “EUCAR is a tremendous enabler to enhance capacity and know-how by pooling part of the effort and risk in automotive research and innovation.”

For each of the EUCAR “Strategic Pillar” domains, Sustainable Propulsion, Safe & Integrated Mobility and Affordability and Competitiveness, experts from EUCAR members presented how results of past EU projects have contributed to the development of vehicles. They referred to a number of vehicles and system exhibits showing a selection of research and innovation projects, whose results augmented the engineering knowledge of the manufacturers and fed the innovation process.

Looking forward to the next 20 years and beyond, three strategic panel sessions, featuring senior European Commission officials, EUCAR Council members and senior stakeholders assessed the ongoing and future priorities for automotive research and innovation.

A dynamic keynote presentation was made by Chris Bangle, renowned automotive designer, providing his thoughts on innovation and design in the industry. He focused on the need for thinking in new ways about the future of personal mobility, in which the car should be considered not just as a tool for mobility, but must add value for individuals by expressing a representation of their person. 

To highlight the role of EUCAR, the network of stakeholders with which it works and the success stories of collaborative research and innovation, we have produced a short video:

 EUCAR video

Press Release: EUCAR Reception & Conference 2014


11th June 2014 - EUCAR publishes its model consortium agreement for Horizon 2020

EUCAR's model consortium agreement has been employed by EUCAR members and other entities in a large number of European co-funded projects.  It forms a solid legal basis for the partnership between beneficiaries and is adapted according to need depending on individual project criteria.

Today EUCAR publishes a new version of its model consortium agreement compatible with the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation and its model grant agreement.  The model consortium agreement was developed by EUCAR's Legal Group, comprising senior legal experts from the members, along with the EUCAR Office.  It was adopted today formally by the EUCAR Council.

Potential users of the EUCAR model consortium agreement are welcome to discus any aspect of the content with EUCAR and its members to help ensure a consistent application in future projects

EUCAR Model Consortium Agreement Horizon 2020


16th April 2014 - JEC Consortium publishes revised Biofuels Study evaluating changes in potential to meet 2020 regulatory targets for renewable energy use and GHG savings in transport

The JEC Consortium, which comprises the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR) and the oil industry’s European association for environment, health and safety in refining and distribution (CONCAWE), published its original JEC Biofuels study in 2011.

This update of the study, necessitated by significant changes in the boundary conditions, analyses potential compliance with the 2020 Renewable Energy Directive (RED) and Fuel Quality Directive (FQD) targets.  Possible changes in these two directives, based on proposals from the European Commission, European Parliament and European Council, have the most significant influence on the potential to meet the targets.  In addition, changes in vehicle fleet composition, in the demand for fuels and in the supply of renewable fuels influence the results.

Using a reference case based on currently standard biofuel blends (B7, E5 and E10), the renewable energy share in transport falls short of the RED 10% target for all potential regulatory scenarios.  Evaluation of three additional cases using higher biofuel blends has shown that the 10% RED target cannot be reached using either 2009 RED rules or the new proposals.  The major factors in these new results are the projected supply of renewable fuels in 2020, the renewal of the vehicle fleet as well as the proposed accounting cap on the contribution of certain biofuels towards meeting the targets.

None of the considered scenarios achieves the minimum 6% GHG reduction target mandated in FQD Article 7a with the assumptions used for the FQD calculations. Including the Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC) factors contained in the 2012 European Commission, 2013 European Parliament and European Council proposals has a substantial negative impact on the calculated GHG reduction.

Leading EUCAR’s work in the study was Heiko Maas, research engineer in the Business Analytics team at the European Ford Research Centre in Aachen, Germany.  Mr Maas stated “The JEC consortium members recognised the necessity of updating the Biofuels study according to new technical and regulatory conditions in order to maintain a reliable benchmark.”  He added, “Consumer acceptance of renewable fuel technologies and blends, as well as a flawless market introduction, are crucial to enabling the scenarios studied.”

Website for download:

Press Release: JEC Consortium publishes revised Biofuels Study


14th - 17th April 2014 - EUCAR participates in the Transport Research Arena conference

From 14th to 17th April the Transport Research Arena (TRA) conference takes place in Paris at CNIT in Las Défense. The TRA is the premier transport research conference in Europe, in which EUCAR and its members are playing a significant role. EUCAR's members are speaking in a number of the Plenary, Strategic, Scientific & Technical and Special sessions. In particular the following sessions have been arranged by EUCAR in partnership with other organisations:

  • Invited session #1, 17:30 - 18:45 on 15th April: "Fuelling clean transport: the JEC Well-to-Wheels (WTW) methodology for comparing alternative fuel and vehicle options" in partnership with the Joint Research Centre and CONCAWE.
  • Invited session #17, 17:30 - 19:00 on 16th April: "iMobility Forum, supporting smart clean and safe mobility." in partnership with the iMobility Forum.

Delegates attending the TRA conference are warmly invited to these sessions.

Further information is available on the TRA website:



1st April 2014 - Toyota Motor Europe is new EUCAR Member from April 2014

The European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR), representing the major European automotive manufacturers in their common research activities, has confirmed Toyota Motor Europe as a new member as from 1st April 2014. This decision was confirmed recently by the EUCAR Council, comprising the senior research and advanced development executives of the European automotive OEMs.

Toyota Motor Europe joins EUCAR as its 15th member company. The 2014 Chairman of EUCAR, Nevio Di Giusto, CEO of FIAT Research Center, expressed the views of the EUCAR Council, stating “Toyota brings to EUCAR substantial European and global expertise in research and innovation, which will enhance our collaborative activities and support the competitiveness of our industry.” He added, “Toyota has made clear its commitment to participate actively in EUCAR’s strategic development and to cooperate on research and innovation projects in the European framework programmes. We look forward to working together to meet our common objectives.”

“Our EUCAR membership illustrates Toyota's commitment to Europe and our clear intention to contribute to European R&D and innovation”, said Masahisa Nagata, Executive Vice President of Toyota Motor Europe (TME). "Both Europe and Japan play a leading role in developing policies and technologies to bring sustainable mobility to reality, and partnerships such as EUCAR are key to making further advances as an industry."

Gerald Killmann, Vice President, R&D at TME, added: "We see EUCAR membership as a further step for Toyota's R&D in Europe in order to contribute more strongly to technological progress, beyond today's existing cooperation of Toyota with European universities and industry. Our engineers are excited to work with and meet the expectations of EUCAR through open collaboration.”

The research and innovation investment of European automobile manufacturers, at over €32bn per year, is the key element in ensuring the future competitiveness of the industry and the continued sustainability of road transport. EUCAR’s mission is to strengthen the competitiveness of the European automotive manufacturers through strategic collaborative research and innovation. EUCAR’s members participate in collaborative pre-competitive research and innovation for passenger cars and commercial vehicles in three “Strategic Pillar” domains: “Sustainable Propulsion”, “Safe & Integrated Mobility” and “Affordability & Competitiveness”. Their activities include the driving of strategy and assessment of the common challenges in research and innovation, communication of these challenges to EU institutions and other stakeholders and the creation of collaborative industrial projects. In particular, EUCAR’s members participate in projects funded by the EU’s Research Framework Programmes, including the Horizon 2020 programme starting this year.

Press Release: Toyota Motor Europe is new EUCAR Member from April 2014


25th March 2014 - JEC Consortium publishes version 4 of its definitive ‘Well-to-Wheels’ study on automotive fuel and energy pathways including new data on electric vehicles, shale gas and biofuels

EUCAR and its partners in the 'JEC Consortium' today published version 4 of their 'Well-to-Wheels Analysis of Future Automotive Fuels and Powertrains in the European Context'.  The JEC Consortium comprises the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR) and the oil industry’s European association for environment, health and safety in refining and distribution (CONCAWE).

The first JEC Well-to-Wheel study was published in 2003 and has been updated at regular intervals according to new data and framework conditions.

The specific objectives of this version of the study are to:

  •  Establish, in a transparent and objective manner, a consensual well-to-wheels energy use and GHG emissions assessment for a wide range of automotive fuels and powertrains relevant to Europe in 2020 and beyond; 
  • Have the outcome accepted as a reference by all relevant stakeholders. 

This 4th version includes a longer term outlook, expanding the time horizon to 2020. In particular, it adds an assessment of the contribution of electrically-chargeable vehicle configurations including plug-in hybrid, range extended, battery and fuel-cell electric vehicles.

The report also introduces updated fuel pathways including shale gas, additional biofuel types, updated production data for biofuels and an updated electricity mix, relevant to electric vehicle recharging. 

Results on GHG emissions have been published for all vehicle and energy types compared to a conventional vehicle baseline, concluding that options exist for reducing GHG emissions from transport, whose contribution is dependent on both the efficiency of the vehicles and the production paths of the propulsion energy. 

Leading EUCAR’s work on the study was Heinz Hass, Manager for Sustainability and Environment at the European Ford Research Centre in Aachen, Germany: 'The study was conducted in a robust technical manner, taking into account up-to-date data on fuels and vehicles.' Continuing, he stated, 'Assuming availability of the most beneficial fuels and energy sources, along with continued improvements in vehicle efficiency, vehicle emissions can be expected to continue on their downward trend.' 

Website for download:

Press Release: JEC Consortium publishes version 4 of its definitive 'Well-to-Wheels' study on automotive fuel and energy pathways including new data on electric vehicles, shale gas and biofuels


11th March 2014 - EUCAR has published a new position paper on the implementation of Horizon 2020, taking into account the now fully defined framework and the view, experience and perceptions during preparation so far of Horizon 2020 projects.The following is a summary of the content of the paper:

EUCAR and its members consider the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation to be an excellent opportunity for collaborative research activities, in particular in the industrial domain, and appreciate the commitment of the European Commission in bringing it to fruition.  In order to foster the optimum effectiveness of the programme in this domain, EUCAR makes the following recommendations on the implementation of Horizon 2020, based on the opinions and experience of our members:

  • For industrial research and innovation themes, including automotive and road transport, formulate calls for proposals with more explicit guidance for the scope and size of projects, reflecting the priorities of industry and stakeholders, thereby also enhancing opportunities for SMEs and new entrants.  It is also recommended to introduce the single-stage evaluation procedure for such calls, reflecting the practice in the contractual PPPs.
  • From 2015 eliminate the long delay in the deadline of the single-stage evaluation procedure and avoid its coincidence with the main holiday period.
  • Ensure a consistent and correct application of average personnel costs in Horizon 2020 projects, in particular without systematic recourse to individual costs in project audits.
  • Expand the Fast-Track to Innovation scheme, ensure its industrial focus and accessibility for all industrial beneficiary types and introduce a finer thematic focus, enabling a critical mass in key areas of industrial research and innovation.  Additionally, consider methods to focus the scheme more effectively by, for example, supporting pilot or follow-on projects.

EUCAR Position Paper Horizon 2020 Implementation


1st January 2014 - Hyundai Motor Europe is new EUCAR Member from January 2014

The European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR), representing the major European automobile manufacturers in their common research activities, has confirmed Hyundai Motor Europe as a new member. Hyundai Motor Europe’s membership officially began on 1st January 2014.

“EUCAR’s members are looking forward to cooperating closely with Hyundai Motor Europe and are convinced that their expertise and commitment in research and development will make a valuable contribution to the work of our association” said Nevio di Giusto, Chairman of EUCAR and Vice Chairman of Fiat Research Center. He added, “Hyundai’s status as a large global manufacturer with a major presence in Europe represents a particular opportunity to expand the scope of EUCAR’s collaborative research and innovation efforts.”

“We are looking forward to collaborating with the other European automobile manufacturers and contributing to the common research activities of the industry”, said Seungwook Yang, President of Hyundai Motor Europe Technical Center (HMETC) in Rüsselsheim, Germany. “As a high technology automobile manufacturer and a major investor in R&D, joining EUCAR is a natural step in our European development and an excellent opportunity to leverage international cooperation to meet our common objectives.”

Press Release: Hyundai Motor Europe is new EUCAR Member from January 2014


11th December 2013 - European Commission issues first work programmes and calls for proposals of Horizon 2020

Today EUCAR welcomes the publication of the European Commission’s first work programmes for the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, which include calls for project proposals for the years 2014 and 2015.  The total funding available for the two years is €15bn, with a portion of this being relevant for collaborative automotive research and innovation of interest to EUCAR’s members.

Many of the collaborative automotive research and innovation priorities of EUCAR, as expressed in our roadmaps for Horizon 2020, are reflected in the work programmes.  The calls are expected to provide opportunities for EUCAR’s members to carry out high quality industrially relevance pre-competitive research and innovation projects.

The following European Commission work programmes are of most relevance to the research and innovation activities of EUCAR’s members:

  • Smart, Green & Integrated Transport (including the European Green Vehicles Initiative)
  • Nanotechnologies, Advanced Materials and Advanced Manufacturing and Processing (including the Factories of the Future initiative)
  • Information and Communication Technologies
  • Secure, Clean & Efficient Energy
  • Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials

For the 2014 call for proposals, EUCAR’s members have started their cooperation to determine potential common project interests, forming ideas for project content and considering additional partners, in order to form consortia.  The objective is to produce excellent research results which are then available for exploitation in the ongoing competitive activities of the automotive manufacturers, feeding market innovation and contributing to meeting societal challenges and a competitive industry.


5th & 6th November 2013 - European Industry highlights the strategic importance of collaborative research and innovation in Horizon 2020. Horizon 2020 is vital to ensuring that automotive research and innovation (R&I) continues competitively in Europe. To highlight the industry’s priorities, the European Council for Automotive R&D (EUCAR) today presented its ‘Strategic Pillars’ of automotive R&I.  EUCAR also addressed industry’s future challenges and expanded on the opportunities for strategic R&I afforded by Horizon 2020.

The announcement came at the annual EUCAR reception and conference in Brussels on 5-6 November. The event which brings together top policy makers with key R&I experts from the automotive industry is an opportunity for these stakeholders to exchange views on future directions for Europe’s scientific and technological efforts in the sector.

The Conference was themed by the Strategic Pillars of automotive R&I for passenger and commercial vehicles: ‘Sustainable Propulsion’, ‘Safe & Integrated Mobility’ and ‘Affordability & Competitiveness’, representing the key priorities for the industry in the upcoming Horizon 2020 Framework Programme.

Strategic Pillars Image


The Conference exhibition displayed a number of vehicles and technology systems arising from projects co-funded by the current Seventh Research Framework Programme. Each panel session of the conference was dedicated to a specific Strategic Pillar, with speakers highlighting the importance of managing and meeting expectations with respect to vehicle propulsion, safety, mobility and industrial competitiveness. A specific panel on Horizon 2020 was held with senior executives and policy makers, in which the speakers addressed issues of simplification in Horizon 2020, in particular how to speed up the process of creating, evaluating and starting research and innovation projects.

Speaking at the event, Waldemar Kütt, Deputy Head of Cabinet to the EU Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science, emphasised the importance of the automotive industry in Europe and its challenges, stating, “Europe's road transport industries are truly world-beating. To remain competitive, they need to constantly innovate; and innovation is based on excellent research”.  Referring to the research challenges of the industry, he detailed the “very complex issues that cover a wide range of disciplines – from the purely technological to the social and behavioural sciences”, adding, ”I believe that Horizon 2020 offers your industry the tools to address all of these research and innovation issues”.

Speaking on behalf of the automotive manufacturers, Michael Ableson, General Motors Europe Vice President Engineering and Member of the Board of Adam Opel AG, focused on how the industry is accelerating innovation by speeding up the development process to meet the constantly changing needs and expectations of consumers, whilst fulfilling regulatory demands amid strong global competition.  He encouraged similar speed in Horizon 2020, calling for “fast procedures for industrially relevant projects to ensure the research results are available to feed innovation as quickly as possible”.

The EUCAR Chairman Ralph Stenger, Director of Global Advanced Vehicle Development & CAE at GM/Opel, presented EUCAR’s Strategic Pillars. “These Pillars represent a coherent and strategic programme for collaborative automotive R&I for inclusion in the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme”, stated Stenger. He added, “We are working with our partners and the European Commission to determine how these priorities can most effectively be addressed in Horizon 2020 in order to reinforce innovation in the automotive sector”.







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