The administration would give car manufacturers more time instead of requiring them to rapidly ramp up sales of electric vehicles over the next few years, the report said, adding that the new rule could be published by early spring.

The shift would mean that EV sales would not need to rise sharply until after 2030.

Reuters previously reported that the White House could enact proposed Environmental Protection Agency regulations as soon as March that would mandate dramatic reductions in tailpipe emissions. The administration proposal would require boosting U.S. EV market share to 67% by 2032 from less than 8% in 2023.

General Motors, Ford, and Stellantis -- the European parent of U.S.-based Ram and Jeep - have warned they cannot profitably transition their truck-heavy U.S. fleets that quickly, according to a Reuters analysis of automakers' sales data and a review of comments to regulators.

Automakers and their main trade group, the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, have urged the Biden administration to slow the proposed ramp-up in EV sales. They have said EV technology is still too costly for many mainstream U.S. consumers, and more time is needed to develop the charging infrastructure.

(Reporting by Jasper Ward, editing by Deepa Babington)