Reuters reports Italy, Portugal, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania want to delay a European Union plan to ban the sale of new gasoline and diesel-powered vehicles in 2035 by five years.
The policy is a key part of the EU's plans to address rising emissions and shift consumers to electric vehicles. The EU aims to slash economy-wide net greenhouse gas emissions 55% by 2030, from 1990 levels.
The European Commission’s car emissions proposal would require a 100% reduction in CO2 emissions from new cars by 2035, banning fuel-powered vehicle sales in the EU from that date.
EU ministers will finalize their position next week before negotiating the law with the EU parliament.
The paper circulated among EU states calls instead for a 90% cut in car CO2 by 2035 and reaching the 100% target by 2040.
The goal is for light commercial vehicles to cut CO2 80% by 2035 and 100% by 2040, rather than the 100% reduction by 2035 the Commission has proposed.
The paper cites a transition period is needed to expand charging infrastructure.
Brussels finds the 2035 date crucial. Its officials say the average lifespan of new cars is 15 years and predict a delayed ban would prevent the EU from reaching zero emissions by 2050.
Other EU governments have rallied behind the 2035 target, but Germany's finance minister reported this week that the EU's biggest car market would not support it.
Ford and Volvo have publicly supported the change, with Volkswagen aiming to no longer sell combustion engine vehicles by 2035.
However, industry groups such as the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association opposed the 2035 target, citing concerns including the uncertain rollout of chargers.