The EU Commission wants older cars to be inspected annually. This was proposed by EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas in Brussels on Friday. Kallas had already prepared for the protest from Germany when he presented his legislative proposal. "Germany has a good testing system," it praised. But uniform minimum standards for vehicle inspections would have to apply throughout Europe.
German Transport Minister Peter Ramsauer (CSU) and the ADAC motorists' club have been railing against the plans from Brussels for some time now.
What is planned – and why?
Brussels authority calls for stricter vehicle checks in Europe. This is to make the traffic safer: Annually, there should be 36 across the EU thanks to the new rules.000 fewer accidents. In addition, the number of traffic fatalities would fall by 1200.
EU experts want to curb technical defects in cars. Such defects are responsible for six percent of all car accidents, he says. Cars that are at least six years old should be inspected annually. Up to now, checks at two-year intervals have been compulsory for older cars throughout the EU.
Rules have not changed since 1977
Transport Commissioner Kallas addresses citizens directly to promote his plans. "If you drive a car that is not roadworthy, you are a danger to yourself and to everyone else," he explains.
Up to now, rules dating back to 1977 have applied throughout Europe. A car has to undergo a safety check for the first time after four years. After that, an inspection is mandatory every two years. A state can make these EU requirements more stringent. In Germany, a car has to go to the TÜV after just three years, and every two years thereafter.
What else do the EU experts want to change?
They want stricter minimum requirements for regular vehicle checks. The EU Commission is also calling for minimum standards for testing equipment and the training of examiners.
In Germany, these proposals may cause irritation. But EU experts explain that inspection conditions and training of inspectors vary widely across Europe in some cases.
Annual inspections after 160.000 kilometers
Frequent drivers must be prepared to bring their car or light commercial vehicle (up to 3.5 tons) to the TÜV every year after four years. This is to become the rule if someone drives a car a total of 160 times in the first four years.000 kilometers driven.
EU Commission also requires owners of motorcycles and scooters to have their vehicles checked regularly. In Germany, these two-wheelers must be inspected every two years. In other countries, such as France and Belgium, there are no such regulations to date.
What the critics say?
The ADAC considers the Brussels plans to be a "rip-off". In Germany, technical defects caused only 0.5 percent of all accidents. Therefore, the new EU rules would mainly benefit vehicle inspectors, as motorists would have to bring their cars to the check more often.
According to the German automobile club ADAC, the new EU rules would affect around 21 million cars in this country. A general inspection costs according to the data about 60 euros.
Also the Federal Ministry of Transport complains above all that the control frequency is to increase. The Europeans should better take the high German standards as an example.
Are older cars more susceptible to interference?
Yes. This is shown by statistics of the TÜV. The test/company has looked at the cars that are checked in its workshops. Conclusion:The older the car, the more repairs are needed.
In three-year-old cars, 5.9 percent have significant defects. According to TÜV these are faulty brakes, but also a broken exhaust pipe. For seven year old cars on average 17.5 percent need to be repaired. For nine-year-old cars, it's 22.2 percent.
How to proceed now?
The bill now goes to the EU parliament and to the states. You can change it. The EU Commission expects the new traffic safety rules to apply from 2016 onwards.