Trucks & buses

Tailpipe CO2 emissions from heavy-duty vehicles have increase on average 2.2% annually since 2000. Trucks account for more than 80% of this growth. Vehicle efficiency standards, together with efforts to improve logistics and operational efficiency, are needed to slow growing emissions.

Trucks Buses Jpg

Key findings

Electrification of road transport goes beyond cars and the ambition is growing

In 2022, nearly 66 000 electric buses and 60 000 medium- and heavy-duty trucks were sold worldwide, representing about 4.5% of all bus sales and 1.2% of truck sales worldwide. Where governments have committed to reduce emissions from public transport, such as in dense urban areas, electric bus sales reached higher shares; in Finland, electric bus sales accounted for over 65% in 2022.

China continues to dominate production and sales of electric (and fuel cell) trucks and buses. In 2022, 54 000 new electric buses and an estimated 52 000 electric medium- and heavy-duty trucks were sold in China, representing 18% and 4% of total sales in China and about 80% and 85% of global sales, respectively. In addition, many of the buses and trucks being sold in Latin America, North America and Europe are Chinese brands.

Ambition with respect to electrifying heavy-duty vehicles is growing. In 2022, around 220 electric heavy-duty vehicle models entered the market, bringing the total to over 800 models offered by well over 100 OEMs. A total of 27 governments have pledged to achieve 100% ZEV bus and truck sales by 2040 and both the United States and European Union have also proposed stronger emissions standards for heavy-duty vehicles.

Electric bus registrations and sales share by region, 2015-2022


Heavy-duty vehicles emissions need to peak rapidly to decline in the coming decade

After dipping during the pandemic, in 2021 emissions from trucks and buses rebounded to roughly their previous level. As a result, emissions in this sector need to peak within the coming few years and begin to rapidly decline within the coming decade to reach Net Zero Scenario milestones. This equates to a fall of 16% by 2030 relative to their current level.

However, given historical trends and the 2021 rebound, emissions from trucks and buses are set to continue increasing, reaching record levels in the coming years. More countries need to adopt, strengthen and harmonise heavy-duty vehicle fuel economy standards and zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) mandates. Adoption of electric and hydrogen fuel-cell electric heavy-duty vehicles (HDVs) is needed now to enable emissions reductions in the 2020s and 2030s.

CO2 emissions from trucks and buses in the Net Zero Scenario, 2000-2030

Our work

Advanced Motor Fuels (AMF TCP)

The mission of the AMF TCP is to advance the understanding and appreciation of the potential of advanced motor fuels towards transport sustainability. This is achieved by providing sound information and technology assessments designed to facilitate informed and science-based decisions regarding advanced motor fuels at all levels of decision-making.

Clean and Efficient Combustion (Combustion TCP)

The Combustion TCP provides a forum for interdisciplinary exchange and enables international collaborative research to advance the understanding of combustion processes to: accelerate the development of combustion technologies that demonstrate reduced fuel consumption and have lower pollutant emissions in transportation, power generation, industry and buildings, and; generate, compile and disseminate independent information, expertise and knowledge related to combustion for the research community, industry, policy makers and society.