China imposes strict fuel economy standards on auto industry

BEIJING (Reuters) - China imposed long-debated stringent fuel economy standards on Wednesday, making life tougher for cash-strapped small domestic brands that are already struggling amid a slowdown of the world's biggest auto market.

BEIJING (Reuters) - China imposed long-debated stringent fuel economy standards on Wednesday, making life tougher for cash-strapped small domestic brands that are already struggling amid a slowdown of the world's biggest auto market.

The rules, jointly issued by five government bodies including the National Development and Reform Commission, would cut passenger cars' average fuel consumption to 6.9 liters per 100 kilometers by 2015 and down further to 5.0 liters by 2020.

"That's going to be tough for everyone, especially those small players as they will have to use more fuel-efficient engines and invest in hybrid technologies," said Yale Zhang, head of Shanghai-based industry consultancy Automotive Foresight.

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