Measures should be taken to replace the most polluting old diesel models in France, the head of French carmaker Renault, Carlos Ghosn, said here on Tuesday.
"We should perhaps remove the very old diesels that have not evolved technologically and that could cause health problems," Ghosn told AFP on the first day of the International Geneva Motor Show.
France has over the past 20 years undergone a widespread "dieselisation", with nearly 60 percent of cars in the country today relying on the fuel.
Heated debate has however recently emerged in the country over the health implications of such cars.
Ecology Minister Delphine Batho and Housing Minister Cecile Duflot have held the cars accountable for the some 40,000 deaths each year in the country linked to breathing in fine particles.
Minister of Industrial Renewal Arnaud Montebourg has meanwhile expressed concern that moving away from diesel would put French carmakers -- diesel specialists that have already been hit hard by the European crisis -- at a serious disadvantage compared with foreign competitors.
Ghosn said that encouraging "sales of old diesels to buy new diesels" was the best way to proceed.
Insisting that there was no reason to rule out diesel technology altogether, since the new models did not pose the same health risks as the old ones, Ghosn said he opposed raising taxes on diesel fuel in France, where it is currently taxed less than petrol.
"Taxation is the government's business," he said, "but it is our opinion that there is no health problems today linked to the current diesels."
Later on Tuesday, Montebourg told the Geneva car show that Paris would make no decision this year on a debated bonus for replacing the oldest diesel models.