CO2 matters: on emissions reporting, ESG ratings and stock market prices in the car sector

Following on from the analysis conducted in 2022, the 2024 report investigates the true carbon footprint of some of the world’s largest carmakers. Some of the key findings include:

  1. Car companies remain amongst the highest emitters in the world – for example, if Toyota Motor Corporation were a country, its greenhouse gas emissions would surpass those of countries such as the UK, France, and Italy.
  2. The automaker ‘carbon gap’ (between declared and estimated emissions) reduced from 46% to 27% – there is some industry improvement in greenhouse gas reporting especially at Stellantis, BMW and Toyota, but a ‘carbon gap’ remains. Hyundai and Honda are also the companies that have underreported their emissions per vehicle the most, with an estimated 113% (Hyundai) and 172% (Honda) more emissions per vehicle than they declared, significantly higher than the overall automakers’ average underreported amount of 27%.
  3. Investments in automakers, in most cases, are still more carbon intensive than those in oil companies – investments in legacy ICE car manufacturers were, on average, 18% more emissions-intensive than investments in oil companies, with Hyundai and Kia being more carbon-intensive than ExxonMobil.
  4. ESG ratings still fail to reflect the sector’s impact and are not fit for purpose – Despite persistent criticism, ESG ratings haven’t improved much and remain disputable both from a qualitative and methodological viewpoint.


For access to the full report, please contact both:

Ben Scott
Head of Automotive
Carbon Tracker Initiative
6 Langley Street, London, WC2H 9JA
Phone: +44 (0)203 6330421

Nomisma SpA
Strada Maggiore 44,
40125, Bologna (IT)
Phone: +39 051 6483111