EU approval and market surveillance measures for motor vehicles and their trailers
Regulation (EU) 2018/858 — approval and market surveillance of motor vehicles and their trailers, and of systems, components and separate technical units intended for such vehicles
WHAT IS THE AIM OF THE REGULATION?
The regulation sets out EU-wide rules on technical requirements and procedures to ensure that new types of motor vehicles and their trailers conform to EU-approved requirements on safety and environmental protection.
It aims to:
- raise the quality level and independence of vehicle type approval* and testing
- increase checks of cars that are already on the EU market and
- strengthen the overall system with EU oversight.
The regulation applies to:
motor vehicles used for the carriage of passengers with at least 4 wheels (category M);
motor vehicles intended for the transportation of goods with at least 4 wheels (category N);
trailers (category O).
Type approval and testing before a car is placed on the market
Technical services will be regularly and independently audited on the basis of strict performance criteria to obtain and maintain the authority given by EU countries to test and inspect new car models. The European Commission and other EU countries will be able to challenge this authorisation when something is wrong.
National type-approval authorities will be subject to Commission audits to ensure that the relevant rules are implemented and rigorously enforced across the EU.
The Commission’s proposal to modify the remuneration system to avoid technical services being paid directly by the manufacturer was not maintained.
Checks of cars on the market
Pre-existing type-approval rules deal mainly with checks on prototypes taken from the production line; this regulation introduces market surveillance and additionally requires EU countries to carry out regular spot-checks on vehicles already on their market and make such results publicly available.
All EU countries can now take immediate safeguard measures against non-compliant vehicles on their territory without having to wait for the authority that issued the type approval to take action.
The Commission can carry out market checks independently of EU countries and has the possibility to initiate EU-wide recalls.
It can challenge the designation of technical services and impose administrative penalties on manufacturers or technical services of up to €30 000 per non-compliant car.
The Commission will chair a new enforcement forum to ensure a more uniform interpretation of relevant EU legislation, complete transparency on cases of non-compliance, and better and more coordinated market surveillance activities by EU countries.
In addition to the existing ban on ‘defeat devices’ which alter the performance exhibited during test procedures, manufacturers must provide access to the car’s software protocols to allow for external checks.
FROM WHEN DOES THE REGULATION APPLY?
It applies from 1 September 2020.
The EU type-approval directive has been transformed into a directly applicable regulation and reinforced following the discovery that certain manufacturers had incorporated systems to alter the performance of their vehicles during testing (‘defeat devices’).
This reform is part of the Commission’s wider work on the car sector set out in the communication ‘Europe on the move’.
For more information, see:
Type approval: procedure whereby an approval authority certifies that a type of vehicle, system, component or separate technical unit meets the relevant administrative rules and technical requirements.
Regulation (EU) 2018/858 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 30 May 2018 on the approval and market surveillance of motor vehicles and their trailers, and of systems, components and separate technical units intended for such vehicles, amending Regulations (EC) No 715/2007 and (EC) No 595/2009 and repealing Directive 2007/46/EC (OJ L 151, 14.6.2018, pp. 1-218)
Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions — Europe on the move — Sustainable mobility for Europe: safe, connected, and clean (COM(2018) 293 final, 17.5.2018)
last update 30.01.2019