Rods 'n' Sods - UK Hot Rod & Street Rod Forums banner

1 - 20 of 51 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Dear all,

I had no knowledge of this but it is about to be made law (in February) unless we act.

Basically it's being done to prevent the registration of Chinese built vehicles but American vehicles are being caught in the cull.

The second phase is to evidently restrict the import of older US vehicles.

We need to write to our MEP's voicing our disagreement.

I will find out if there is a standard letter drafted to this effect and post.

If anyone has access to other related forums, clubs, groups etc then please pass this on as a matter of urgency.

I personally don't know the nuts and bolts of this but I'd be happy to try and answer any questions and/or find out the answers. Tony Cohen from ACI/AIAA is the guy heading this up but I know he is incredibly tied up with dealing with this!

This is actually real and about to happen so please make yourselves heard!

Cheers,




Stew
29th December 2009
Ms Neelie Kroes
Commissioner for Competition
European Commission
Rue de la Loi 200
B 1049 Brussels
Belgium

FROM THE AMERICAN IMPORT AGENTS ASSOCIATION
57-63 Coburg Road, Wood Green, London N22 6UB, United Kingdom
Re- Draft Proposal for Harmonised Individual Vehicle Approval



“I feel that as policy-makers we should be able to get our relationship right and together tear down remaining barriers, so that businesses on both sides of the Atlantic can continue to flourish”.
Speech by Catherine Ashton at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Washington D.C., 26 October 2009

Dear Commissioner Kroes,

On behalf of the American Import Agents Association (AIAA), who are involved in the importation of new American vehicles into the UK, we are writing to ask for your urgent support to prevent the adoption of a new draft Harmonised Individual Vehicle Approval (IVA) proposal that will undermine consumer choice and decimate a longstanding micro industry across Europe.

By failing to recognise or respect the legitimacy of the small independent vehicle import market for North American vehicles in Europe, the Commission may have been negligent in its duties. In developing these draft regulations we believe that the Commission, under intense pressure from the FIA, has been over zealous in its attempt to protect human health and life and in so doing may have been guilty of maladministration. When the AIAA first contacted the Commission about the proposal for Harmonised IVA, we were only seeking an amendment to permit left hand drive very low volume North American imports to stay within the UK’s National IVA scheme. However, as the scheme has evolved and its potential impact has been revealed, we have been forced to question the entire scheme and make the following claims.


The AIAA is a group of long-standing family run micro-businesses, typically employing 2-6 people that offer assistance to consumers in the UK, who wish to import an American vehicle not offered for sale by the manufacturers in Europe. We are typical of similar businesses all over Europe. Our members also provide or arrange servicing, parts supply, warranties and other facilities offered by a car dealer to ensure compliance with the legal obligations relating to consumer protection. As the vehicles are not imported by the manufacturers, we display an extra duty of care to look after the consumer, and often receive referrals from the manufacturers customer service help-lines in the UK to deal with customer queries. The AIAA is recognised by the UK Government as a legitimate stakeholder in the Motor Trade and is an active member of DfT’s Light Vehicle Trade User Group

Most of the cars imported are new vehicles ordered in advance by a consumer who wants to drive an unusual vehicle. The vehicles do not undermine the Type Approval system, as the volumes imported are extremely low, and they are mainly bought by enthusiasts. New American vehicles have been independently imported into Europe for over 50 years. These vehicles are not built to European standards, but are built to broadly equivalent Federal or Canadian safety and environmental standards. To register a vehicle in a Member State, each vehicle has to be submitted to a National homologation process called Individual vehicle Approval (IVA). As it says in the Commission’s Interpretative communication on procedures for the registration of motor vehicles originating in another Member State SEC/2007/0169, “National type-approval and individual approval procedures for motor vehicles to be used or registered for the first time in the EU normally fall outside the scope of EC law.”

This micro-industry supports a whole infrastructure of specialist businesses and dozens of specialist car clubs. (See attachment 1-Paper on American Vehicles in the UK) Unless the draft proposal is withdrawn, there are literally hundreds of thousands of European citizens whose lives will be adversely affected without a compelling justification. The draft regulations are only aimed at new vehicles (defined as mass produced vehicles under 6 months old), indicating the discriminatory and anti-competitive nature of the draft proposal.

In the UK, there are currently less than 500 new American vehicles imported each year, comprising dozens of different models. This compares to circa 2.25 million new passenger cars(M1) and light commercial vehicles (N1) that the SMMT’s members will register in the UK in 2009. In the 27 Member States during 2009, we estimate that for M1 and N1 vehicles, 38,000 new vehicles will have used National IVA schemes out of a total new vehicle registration figure of 16.1 million vehicles-i.e. 0.24 percent. (Source ACEA website) In other words, the ACEA’s members will have accounted for 99.76% of all new Passenger Car and Light Commercial vehicles sold in Europe in 2009. In 2010, can the European consumer not enjoy any choice beyond what the manufacturers have planned for him/her to purchase?

With these draft Harmonised regulations, the Commission seems to have grossly over-reacted to a case from a few years ago where 300 allegedly unsafe identical Chinese Landwind vehicles were unwisely approved by a rubber-stamp method in Germany. This has led to an intensive lobbying campaign from the FIA to restrict any vehicles that did not have European type approval, a process only available to manufacturers. (See attachment 2 -Statement from the FIA-Loophole in the European Type Approval?). This inappropriate method of rubber-stamping approval is not in the spirit of single vehicle approval and is not condoned by the AIAA. This “customer orientated” approach has certainly never occurred in the UK where every single vehicle is independently and objectively inspected by the UK authorities.

It is worth noting that contrary to what was said by the FIA in their media statement, the reason the former German Single Vehicle Approval process was used as a popular method to gain approval for American vehicles, is not because it was normally lax or the lowest common denominator. After the Second World War, Germany had many American forces stationed on its territory, and as a result, it had to find a way to legally accept the American vehicles, even though they were not built to German standards. The German system of single vehicle approval (Einzelbetriebserlaubnis) was therefore developed under the scope of the StVZO, in order to legally exempt a non-compliant, yet safe vehicle, so that it could be registered and driven on the road. The German system naturally became favoured by citizens in other Member States as it provided the applicant with a legal document, the Fahrzeugbrief, which contained many of the vehicles’ technical characteristics and standards it had been assessed against. This German system, in many parts of Europe, became the benchmark for single vehicle approval and could often be relied upon in gaining mutual recognition.

It is only seen as a loophole by the FIA who are taking a dispoportionate and protectionist line. Far from it, this German system helped to ensure that the single market rules actually worked, in the absence of harmonisation. The system of Mutual Recognition is explained fully for vehicles approved on an individual basis in the Commission’s Interpretative communication on procedures for the registration of motor vehicles originating in another Member State (SEC/2007/0169). Consequently, the FIA media statement was not just attacking the right to import an individual vehicle through a well established and legitimate National approval process. It was also attacking the whole concept of Mutual Recognition - one of the most fundamental legal concepts of the Single Market in the absence of harmonised standards.

To respond to the Chinese Landwind problem, the Commission made it mandatory for each Member State to operate a National Individual Vehicle Approval scheme. The regulations on this new scheme are found in Article 24 of the Framework Directive 2007/46/EC. This article relies on Member States to provide administrative provisions and technical requirements which aim to ensure a level of road safety and environmental protection, which is equivalent to the greatest extent practicable to the level provided for by the provisions of the European Type Approval standards. Under the scope of these regulations, the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality apply, and the rights of businesses and consumers are protected. For reasons of proportionality, the UK has a right hand drive - high volume IVA test and a left hand drive - low volume IVA test. (See attachment 3 - Regulatory Impact Assessment from the UK Better Regulation Executive) The left hand drive low volume approval process is one that the Commission insisted that the UK authorities adopt in 2000 and was also endorsed by the SMMT.

Cont'd V V
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Even though American vehicles are built to slightly different standards to those in Europe, there has never been a fundamental safety problem with American vehicles on European roads. Unsurprisingly, neither the FIA nor the European Commission have documented one single issue with an American vehicle. Indeed the FIA, in another press release recently admitted that Europe is falling behind the USA in the use of life saving ‘esafety’ technology.

The new National IVA regulations only became mandatory in April 2009, having been notified and accepted under the 98/34 Directive. Why has the European Commission decided to regulate further, when there is no new vital safety or environmental problem? (See attachment 4 -Statement from the FIA-“Sub-standard cars loophole in EU legislation still wide open 31st March 2008.) If the Commission is only interested in safety, why is it discriminating against brand new mass-produced cars built to the latest Federal or Canadian standards when it could ban amateur built cars or older imports? The Commission officials, however, seem to have lost touch with their sense of proportionality and reasonableness by allowing the FIA leadership through their membership of the Cars 21 High level group, to appear to dictate European competition policy in respect of single imports. The draft scheme is riddled with technical racism and protectionism, and represents the Commission’s implementation of the FIA’s pressure. (See attachment 5 -Letter from the Commission.) Why is there no independent SME representation in the Cars 21 group so that there is a fair balance of opinion?

This is a case of where the imposition of administrative procedures and technical regulations designed for major vehicle manufacturers, are being applied inappropriately to individual citizens and SME’s, in the full knowledge by the Commission that they are impossible to comply with. Furthermore, to apply more stringent technical standards to newer products, constitutes an arbitrary discrimination not justified under either International or European law. The Commission is effectively telling consumers that they have no right to drive a new car in Europe, unless it has been bought from a European car manufacturer. In other words, one cannot import a new car that is not marketed officially in Europe !

To protect the rights of SME’s and the consumer, any possible desire to harmonise regulations, should not take precedence over the fundamental legal principles of proportionality and subsidiarity enshrined in European Law. The Commission states that the “Directive that has been repealed by Directive 2007/46/EC has proven to create distortion of the functioning of the internal market.” However, this comment is a protectionist smokescreen as the Commission has failed to fulfil its obligation to provide quantitative or qualitative evidence or justifications of why the fundamental principle of subsidiarity has been withdrawn for vehicles constructed to the latest Federal and Canadian safety and environmental technologies.

The Commission has acted inappropriately and has appeared to succumb to unyielding pressure that discriminates against small business and is inherently anti-consumer, eliminating any competition with European Car manufacturers, however small. Furthermore, in the development of the Draft Proposal for Harmonised IVA, no account has been taken of the Better Regulation Guidelines and there has been no Stakeholder Involvement, Consultation or Regulatory Impact Assessment. For passenger cars (M1), the National IVA regulations in force , only came into affect on April 29th 2009. The existing regulations already ensure that fundamental safety and environmental issues are complied with to the “greatest extent practicable” with the European Type Approval Directives. For light goods vehicles (N1), the new regulations have not yet even come into effect.

The Draft Harmonised IVA proposals are impossible for private individuals and small businesses to comply with, as the proposals contain technical standards and administrative procedures designed for manufacturers that are well in excess of the “greatest extent practicable” benchmark in Article 24 of the Directive. (See attachment 6 from the UK Department for Transport to the Commission)

The concept of ”greatest extent practicable” represents for all intents and purposes, the limit of what is reasonable or necessary, from a proportionality perspective. However, for the UK market and for very low volume imports elsewhere in Europe, the Commission’s statements in the preamble to the Draft Harmonised Regulations have no validity and have ignored many different legal principles and policies that they are obliged to comply with. To make reference to Working Party 29 and UNECE regulations, for individual vehicles imported by citizens, their agents or SME’s, this language is an attempt to appear reasonable, under what is in reality a regulatory smokescreen. The Commission knows that these technical committees are only for International experts to work towards a more globalised approach to developing vehicle standards for the benefit of vehicle manufacturers. There are dozens of type approval standards and whilst a number of international standards have been incorporated into the Draft proposal as a ploy to appear reasonable, the Commission knows that the administrative requirements and technical standards that remain, make the import procedure totally uneconomic for SME’s and private European citizens to undertake. Furthermore, the AIAA has evidence from the UK that the number of IVA applications is well below estimate, countering the justification from the Commission that the new regulations are fostering bigger volumes.

To protect the rights of the consumer and individual importer, individual vehicles can only gain an approval by complying with reasonable standards that are equivalent to the “greatest extent practicable to European Type Approval Standards.” Otherwise, by definition, the vehicles are banned. What evidence is there under the scope of Article 24 of the Framework Directive 2007/46/EC that each of the Member States are incapable of setting and monitoring safety and environmental standards? Incidentally, is the Commission aware that even though the FIA’s leadership wants to ban the imports, the FIA’s European member clubs sell after-market warranties for these new cars?

The Commission has therefore chosen to ignore the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality; both crucial and over-riding tenets of European Law, and is trying to enforce constraints that are illogical, superfluous and excessive through the use of harmonised standards. There is no huge trade issue here, as most new American vehicles are generally imported by private individuals and independent SME’s all over Europe, predominantly in response to an order for an end-user.

Unless the Draft Harmonised IVA regulations are withdrawn, the Commission officials may be guilty of Maladministration, in breach of several articles in The European Code of Good Administrative Behaviour, by failing to act correctly in the following areas.

1) The Commission has failed to follow the principle of proportionality as clearly laid down in primary law under Article 5 of the Treaty establishing the European Community and subsequently endorsed in the Lisbon Treaty. There have never been any safety or environmental problems with American vehicles built to Federal or Canadian standards to warrant a change in the way these cars are homologated in Europe.

2) The Commission has failed to provide quantitative or qualitative evidence why the fundamental principle of subsidiarity has been withdrawn from Member States only for newer and safer vehicles. On what legal basis have Member States given up their shared competence to regulate individual approvals under Article 24 of 2007/46/EC as confirmed by SEC/2007/0169, and as supported by Article 3b of the Treaty of Lisbon

3) The Commission has ignored the warnings from the AIAA that there could be a serious risk to road safety and the environment when American car drivers are unable to have access to specialist American vehicle maintenance facilities and parts supply after the businesses in this sector fail, due to the impact of these new Draft proposals. The AIAA estimates that there are in excess of 250,000 vehicles built to FMVSS and CMVSS standards on European roads.

4) The Commission has discriminated against private citizens and SME’s, by introducing excessive standards and administrative arrangements for new vehicles that it knows can only be conformed to by vehicle manufacturers. This is anti-competitive behavior, not sufficiently justified. The American car scene is a tiny fraction of one percent of new vehicle registrations in Europe. In the UK it is even smaller as the vehicles imported are left hand drive, entering a right hand drive market.

5) The Commission may have failed to act objectively and impartially by allowing itself to be unduly influenced by the FIA, even after the Commission acted correctly, proportionately and legally with the introduction of the new National IVA regulations in Article 24 of the Framework Directive 2007/46/EC

6) The Commission has failed to undertake any Consultation with European consumers or SME stakeholders. Even though the AIAA has been the lead stakeholder in respect of American cars with the UK Government for the last 13 years and has been in contact with the Commission several times since 1996, the Commission has not made any attempt to contact the established stakeholders in the industry. When the AIAA approached the Commission last year, its recommendations about applying the principles of Better Regulation to the proposal were not adopted. Furthermore, the minutes of many of the meetings held by the Technical Committee for Motor Vehicles (TCMV) have never been made public, as they are password protected on the Commission’s website.

7) The Commission has failed to undertake any Regulatory Impact Assessment and has not followed the guidelines on Regulatory Impact Assessments in the Cars 21 report. By failing to recognise or respect the legitimacy of the independent vehicle import market in Europe, the Commission may have been grossly negligent in its obligations.

8) The Commission has failed to apply any Better Regulation Guidelines or the specific Better Regulation Guidelines as outlined in the Cars 21 Final Report for the Automotive Industry. The AIAA worked as an active Stakeholder with the UK Authorities for 3 years in the run up to the new National IVA. The UK government does respect the legitimacy of the small independent vehicle import market for North American vehicles not sold in Europe by the manufacturers and did follow the Better Regulation Guidelines in arriving at the new National IVA regulations. (see attachment-7-The Department for Transport’s Simplification Plan-Update 2009 - page 6.--- and attachment 4)

9) The Commission has ignored the core principles of recognising the central role of SME’s in the EU economy, as outlined in its own Small Business Act for Europe entitled “Think Small First”. The current economic recession further substantiates this criticism. If these regulations come into effect, the reality is that dozens of small businesses may fail and hundreds of jobs may be lost in the UK and thousands more across Europe.

10) The Commission has ignored its own obligations of Transatlantic Economic Integration. The Commission should be aware that American cars are of one of the best icons and symbols of North American culture and technology in Europe today. What possible reason or benefit is there for Europe in 2010 to suddenly erect such a trade barrier with our transatlantic partners to undermine this relationship when so many jobs are at stake? All over Europe these vehicles are only mostly sold to enthusiasts many of whom belong to American car clubs. The AIAA estimates that more than 50,000 Europeans belong to American car clubs.

11) The Commission has created a discriminatory technical barrier to trade, which prevents the importation of new vehicles built to the latest safety and environmental standards. This protectionist activity can only be seen as an arbitrary discrimination, not justified by the protection of human health and life, contravening the principles of the GATT treaty and the Single Market rules. The banning of new vehicles will distort import markets to foster the importation of vehicles with older safety and environmental technologies.


Cont'd v v
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Commissioner Kroes, we are appealing to you for help. As we are only a tiny trade body we do not have the same influence and resources as the FIA with the Commission. However, we represent the individual consumer and many hundreds of automotive jobs in the UK and thousands more across Europe. Most of the businesses concerned are small family businesses. Our voice must be listened to.

Unless these Draft Harmonised IVA regulations are withdrawn, the Commission will have acted in a disproportionate way that is anti-consumer, anti small business, and failing to comply with so many of the legal principles and regulatory good practices that it is obliged to follow. Indeed the Commission officials may be guilty of Maladministration, in breach of several articles in The European Code of Good Administrative Behaviour. What makes matters even worse is that the senior officials responsible for drafting these regulations deny they are trying to stop imported vehicles. "Imported vehicles built in compliance with the US legislation will therefore continue to be accepted as is the case today in the United Kingdom" (See attachment- 8 - Letter from the Commission) These disingenuous statements are very troubling. Why are we being treated as 2nd class Europeans and not afforded full rights under the Treaty?

The policies of the Commission should not undermine transatlantic cooperation or bring Europe into disrepute with its citizens. There is no need for new regulations at all. The new existing National IVA schemes which require equivalence to the "greatest extent practicable" with the many European Type Approval directives, are a thoroughly proportionate way for Member States to administer a tiny fraction of a percent of vehicles that European consumers want to buy, and the manufacturers do not sell.

In the name of Competition, we urge you to intervene, so that the Commission prevents the creation of a huge injustice for its citizens, not sufficiently mandated by the protection of human health and life.

Yours sincerely

Anthony Cohen
Chairman American Import Agents Association
Tel: +44 20 8889-4545
[email protected]

Attachments
1) - Paper on the American Car scene in the UK
2) - Statement from the FIA-Loophole in the European Type Approval?
3) - Letter from the Commission 23-9-2008
4) - Regulatory Impact Assessment from the UK Better Regulation Executive
5) - FIA Statement-"Sub-standard cars loophole in EU legislation still wide open
6) - Letter from the UK Department for Transport to the Commission
7) - Department for Transport's - Simplification Plan -Update 2009-Page 6
8) - Letter from the Commission saying the American vehicles will be accepted

Cc

-Philippe Jean -Head of Unit-Automotive-Enterprise and Industry-Commission
-Members of the Technical Committee of Motor Vehicles
-Ami Levin-Chairman-Committee on Technical Barriers to Trade, World Trade Organisation
-Ron Kirk-US Trade Representative, United States Trade Compliance Center
-Ross Hornby-Ambassador-Mission of Canada to the EU
-Catherine Dickson-Head of Trade-Mission of Canada to the EU
-Juergen R. Thumann-Co Chairman-Transatlantic Business Dialogue
-Sylvia Mohr-Automotive Commercial Attaché-US Mission to the European Union
-Sara Jones, Commercial Assistant, U.S. Commercial Service U.S. Embassy, London
-Dieter Zetsche- President ACEA
-Paul Everitt-Chief Executive SMMT
-Edmund King-President AA
-Tina Sommer, President -European Small Business Alliance
-Mark Spelman-Chairman American Chamber of Commerce to the European Union
-Ian Yarnold-Deputy Head of Vehicle Technology and Standards Dft -UK
-Mike Lowe-Senior Policy Advisor, Transport Technology and Standards DfT-UK
-John Maddox-Associate Administrator for Vehicle Safety Research-NHTSA
-Christian Lavoie-Director, Motor Vehicle Standards-Transport Canada
-Harry Sanne-President European Association of Independent Vehicle Traders
-Brian Osler-President North American Automobile Trade Association

5th January 2010
Anthony Cohen
Chairman-American Import Agents Association
57-63 Corburg Road
Wood Green
London N22 6UB
United Kingdom

RE: Letter to Commissioner Kroes on Draft Proposal for Harmonised Individual Vehicle Approval

Dear Mr Cohen,

Many thanks for your recent note to Mr Thumann, our European Co Chair, regarding your letter to Commissioner Neelie Kroes. He read it with great interest and asked me to respond to you.

First of all, let me reassure you that TABD has sympathy for your views. What you seem to be facing are unintended consequences of a broader harmonization initiative for vehicles - The Harmonized Individual Approval proposal.

As you are no doubt aware, the TABD is the leading voice in promoting barrier free trade across the transatlantic market place and in advancing transatlantic economic integration. To this end, the TABD was chosen to advise the Transatlantic Economic Council (TEC) on transatlantic business priorities for pursuing greater integration and harmonization.

TABD will include reference to the issues you raise as part of our ongoing TEC stakeholder consultation work, which we will probably be re-launching in March ahead of the next TEC meeting which is likely to take place in May. Given the overall economic impact on your members I assume you would be satisfied with some kind of de minimus exemption to the proposal that would work to keep your part of the motor business operating.

I have included with this letter a copy of the TABD 2009-2010 recommendations as well as the executive summary.

With kind regards,

Jeffries Briginshaw
EU Director TABD
 

·
Semi Proffessional Prat
Joined
·
3,489 Posts
Ok, I have read through that, and get the gist, but could you put it in to plain terms so we may understand it better?

Regards

Andy
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Ok, I have read through that, and get the gist, but could you put it in to plain terms so we may understand it better?

Regards

Andy
Andy,

Of course you are right and I have requested the same and will post on here.

As I gather, they are making the SVA type test impossible for an individual or dealer to comply with meaning that vehciles cannot be registered on a Europewide basis.

This has evidently been instigated by the FIA who are amongst other things, the body that is in charge of crach testing vehicles I believe on a world wide basis - I didn't know that, I thought they were a motorsport body!

I'll come back as soon as I have info!

Cheers,

Stew
 

·
Compulsive chicken choker
Joined
·
6,361 Posts
This concerns the new HIVA to harmonise European Type Approval. ACE is aware of this and monitoring it. But, I'll wait for Kev to reply as he has far more understanding of this.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
This concerns the new HIVA to harmonise European Type Approval. ACE is aware of this and monitoring it. But, I'll wait for Kev to reply as he has far more understanding of this.
Thanks mate,

I'm sure there will be some duplication - I wasn't aware and several of the people I deal with also were not.

further to the point ANdy made, Tony Cohen is going to draft a kind of Laymans view of how it will/could affect us plus a letter that should be printed in it's entirety and addressed to your local MEP as a matter of urgency - I believe it is important that we bring as much pressure as possible to stop this change!

Stew
 

·
Semi Proffessional Prat
Joined
·
3,489 Posts
further to the point ANdy made, Tony Cohen is going to draft a kind of Laymans view of how it will/could affect us plus a letter that should be printed in it's entirety and addressed to your local MEP as a matter of urgency - I believe it is important that we bring as much pressure as possible to stop this change!

Stew
Yes Stew, but on the other hand it would be best methinks if we have clarification of WTF they are talking about, before jumping at them like a pig at a tater. A united front of opposed parties, rather than a ramshackle crowd of moaners, not knowing what they are talking about.

Regards
Andy
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Yes Stew, but on the other hand it would be best methinks if we have clarification of WTF they are talking about, before jumping at them like a pig at a tater. A united front of opposed parties, rather than a ramshackle crowd of moaners, not knowing what they are talking about.

Regards
Andy
Agree with both the above - I'll post more as soon as I have it!
 

·
Off the Xmas card list
Joined
·
24,055 Posts
We were first made aware of the HIVA proposals some 6 months back but there was nothing available that we could look through to see how this would affect modifiers / importers in this country.
It was only 4 days ago that we receievd a copy of the draft regulations and have not had time to fully assess their possible impact ( see below )

http://www.scribd.com/doc/24592411/Draft-Harmonised-Individual-Vehicle-Approval

We were however already aware of concern re the continuation of the BIVA and contacted VOSA , their replies are quoted verbatim in the link below .

http://www.the-ace.org.uk/biva-under-threat.html

The BIVA ( as is HIVA ) was in response to the EUWVTA ( European Union Whle Vehicle Type Approval ) that is to come into effect in April 2012 .

The EUWVTA is the finalised version of the Type Approval regs that were first proposed in 1977 and which rodders and kit car manufacturers successfully fought to enable the SVA ,now BIVA, to be created.

What thisidoes show again is that is is IMPERATIVE that all legislation is monitored to ensure the contunuation of our automotive freedom.

We are still trying to grow ACE to encompass ALL type of automotive modifying as rodding does not have enough strength to do this alone, we need all genres to stand shouler to shoulder to provid the strength in numbers to fight

I will speak to my contacts and see what I can make of this..
 

·
Off the Xmas card list
Joined
·
24,055 Posts
I should also add that we know of nothing proposed that would prevent the importation of older American ( or otherwise ) cars as they are not required to pass BIVA ( unless modified outside the DVLA 8 points rule ) as they are older than 10 years old.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
I should also add that we know of nothing proposed that would prevent the importation of older American ( or otherwise ) cars as they are not required to pass BIVA ( unless modified outside the DVLA 8 points rule ) as they are older than 10 years old.
re: registration of older American cars - as I understand from Tony Cohen, this directive for 'new' (up to 6 months old) will eventually be extended to cover older vehciles as well.
 

·
Off the Xmas card list
Joined
·
24,055 Posts
Only up to 10 years old ,I'll speak with him at some stage to confirm his info after I've spent forever going through the HIVA proposals.

What deadline is there supposed to be on this as it should be April 2012 along with EUWVTA.?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Just reading the reply re: BIVA, this seems to be based on the logistics of where a test may be carried out rather than the type of test.

I'm not sure if we're talking at cross-purposes. The concern here is that the EU is on the brink of implementing a test for vehciles manufactured outside the EU which is basically impossible for an individual or small business to comply to!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Only up to 10 years old ,I'll speak with him at some stage to confirm his info after I've spent forever going through the HIVA proposals.

What deadline is there supposed to be on this as it should be April 2012 along with EUWVTA.?
As I understand, it will be voted on to go in to European law next month!
 

·
Off the Xmas card list
Joined
·
24,055 Posts
Just reading the reply re: BIVA, this seems to be based on the logistics of where a test may be carried out rather than the type of test.

I'm not sure if we're talking at cross-purposes. The concern here is that the EU is on the brink of implementing a test for vehciles manufactured outside the EU which is basically impossible for an individual or small business to comply to!
BIVA is the current test used (as of April this year) and was created from the old SVA in response to the EUWVTA regs . It is the test currently used to test imported modern American cars . So even without the threat of HIVA the loss of the current BIVA testing facilities would have had the same effect.

HIVA appears to be required if a member state wishes to sell that vehicle into other EU member states . The EU has always been against SVA , and therefore BIVA , as it felt the test inadequate to allow free passage. However under current EU law another member state does not have to accept BIVA whereas it had to accept SVA.

I have looked at the HIVA draft proposals and they include everything that the EU wanted the BIVA to be but that DfT ,after consultation with stakeholders ,removed from OUR test.

I'll attempt to clarify the current situation with VOSA and DfT tomorrow.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
BIVA is the current test used (as of April this year) and was created from the old SVA in response to the EUWVTA regs . It is the test currently used to test imported modern American cars . So even without the threat of HIVA the loss of the current BIVA testing facilities would have had the same effect.

HIVA appears to be required if a member state wishes to sell that vehicle into other EU member states . The EU has always been against SVA , and therefore BIVA , as it felt the test inadequate to allow free passage. However under current EU law another member state does not have to accept BIVA whereas it had to accept SVA.

I have looked at the HIVA draft proposals and they include everything that the EU wanted the BIVA to be but that DfT ,after consultation with stakeholders ,removed from OUR test.
So what are the implications?

IS the HIVA workable in terms of an individual and/or small business being able to register a vehicle?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,827 Posts
Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
This is obviously longwinded from the FIA:


The Eurocouncil of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile
European Bureau
Rue d'Arlon 50 B - 1000 Brussels Tél. +32 2 280 07 58 Fax. +32 2 280 07 44
MEDIA STATEMENT
FIA CONFERENCE: LOOPHOLE IN THE EUROPEAN TYPE APPROVAL?
STAKEHOLDERS PRONOUNCE EUROPE’S SAFETY CERTIFICATION REGIME LEGAL
BUT QUESTION SAFETY ETHICS
The FIA brought stakeholders together in Brussels, Tuesday 29th November to discuss the
current safety certification regime for putting cars on the roads in Europe. The European Type
Approval framework Directive 70/156/EC currently under review (in the modified legislative
proposal COM (2004) 0738) has revealed itself in recent weeks to be open to misuse with
serious potential threats to passenger vehicle safety.
The catastrophic results of the frontal crash tests of the Chinese Jiangling Landwind Sports
Utility Vehicle (SUV) performed by the German automobile club ADAC was the catalyst for
this debate. Incredible but true, this life-threatening vehicle has been legally placed on various
EU markets (Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands) in sizeable quantities without a
European Type Approval and without complying to the European crash standard.
In principle all serial produced passenger cars registered on the territory of the European
Union need a European type approval in accordance with Directive 70/156/EC. However, the
Chinese sports utility vehicle (SUV) Jiangling Landwind has been introduced using a milder
procedure ‘the individual vehicle approval’ whereby member states may allow vehicles as
“individual” units to be imported into their territory as long as they meet national safety and
environment requirements. Using this procedure, a Dutch importer infiltrated the Landwind
unit by unit, via Germany for sale on various European markets.
At a time when the European Commission’s road safety policy has been actively pursuing
since 2001, a 50% reduction in the annual number of death on the roads by 2010, the FIA
asked the various stakeholders, EU institutions, vehicle manufacturers and national type
approval authorities how we could arrive at the current state of affairs.
“With all the trouble that car manufacturers go through to protect the consumer by
making sure that type approval is as it should be, we can’t have exceptions.”
Max Mosley
FIA President, Max Mosley opened the conference underlining that the objective was to
resolve a serious potential threat to passenger vehicle safety irrespective of what the legal
situation might be. On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the European New Car
Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) which has succeeded in motivating car manufacturers
to significantly improve the safety of their vehicles it was ironic that Mr Mosley, founding
Chairman of Euro NCAP should be discussing how to close loopholes that allow vehicles
using technologies of thirty years ago on today’s roads. “With all the trouble that car
manufacturers go through to protect the consumer by making sure that type approval is as it
should be, we can’t have exceptions, or backdoors or unusual routes for securing a market for
vehicles which don’t actually comply with the regulations in force.”
“We are not protectionist when it comes to trade policies, but we are very protectionist
when it comes to human lives.”
Ari Vatanen
In his introduction Ari Vatanen, Member of the European Parliament and road safety
rapporteur pointed out that “Whatever is in the consumer’s interest is also in the car
The Eurocouncil of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile
European Bureau
Rue d'Arlon 50 B - 1000 Brussels Tél. +32 2 280 07 58 Fax. +32 2 280 07 44
manufacturer’s interest” and added that besides being a legal question to be discussed in the
conference it is also a moral question. Speaking about the Landwind being the first Chinese
car circulating on European roads he stated that “we are not protectionist when it comes to
trade policies, but we are very protectionist when it comes to human lives.” He added that “it
is very sad that Germany seems to play the role of the weakest link of the EU when it comes
to importing unsafe cars into the Community!”
“We observed the catastrophic performance at the impact of 64 km/h… The
compartment itself is used as the crash zone! The driver is squeezed totally by
intrusion and the collapsing compartment.”
Dr Wilfried Klanner
Dr Wilfried Klanner, Head of the ADAC’s Technical Laboratory which carried out crash tests
on the Jiangling Landwind Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) explained why he performed this test
and identified the loopholes which permitted this vehicle to be legally placed on the European
market.
“Low priced products are booming”, he said, “our members, when they see a SUV for only
€15,000 euros, are of course interested. But they come to us (ADAC) wanting to know if they
are safe. This is why we decided to crash test the Landwind”. He explained that even during
the inspection of the vehicle prior to the crash test ADAC’s concerns were raised. “Due to the
position of the steering gear directly behind the bumper and the design of the steering column
it was foreseeable that in a crash there would be a huge steering wheel intrusion into the
passenger area” he said. And indeed from the video footage shown it was clearly
demonstrated that the Jiangling Landwind does not pass the European frontal impact crash
standard (96/79/EC) (i.e. when crashed at a speed of 56 km/h) in terms of vertical and
horizontal steering wheel intrusion. Using the Euro NCAP frontal impact crash protocol (64
km/h) the Landwind collapsed completely. “We observed the catastrophic performance at the
impact of 64 km/h” he explained and added that “there is nearly no energy absorbance in the
crash zone itself leading to a huge compartment deformation. The compartment itself is used
as the crash zone! The driver is squeezed totally by intrusion and the collapsing
compartment.”
Dr Klanner described the three ways in which vehicles can be approved for entry on the
European market:
European type approval – cars have to meet requirements set out in 56 EU
Directives. Among these, cars up to 2.5 t gross vehicle weight ( i.e. weight of the
vehicle plus the maximum weight a vehicle can carry as determined by the
vehicle manufacturer) must meet European crash standards (frontal and side
impact) under Directives 96/79/EC and 96/27/EC.
Small series type approval – under Directive 70/156/ EEC cars do not need to
meet European crash standards when produced in a limited number (maximum of
500 units per year per Member State). This is intended to save small
manufacturers from disproportionate costs.
Individual vehicle approval – via nationally operated approval systems cars do
not need to meet European crash standards. However they must satisfy (milder)
national safety and environmental checks. Although each individual vehicle unit
has to be separately approved there is no limitation on the number of vehicles an
individual may have approved. Once approved and registered by one Member
State, thanks to mutual recognition other Member States are obliged to accept
such vehicles on their roads.
Dr Klanner explained that “for single vehicle approval one can choose the country with the
lowest national requirements for approval and registration. With this a car can be circulated
around the European Union because of the mutual recognition. He added that “any number
The Eurocouncil of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile
European Bureau
Rue d'Arlon 50 B - 1000 Brussels Tél. +32 2 280 07 58 Fax. +32 2 280 07 44
of cars of a model not meeting the crash regulations can be placed on the market with the
help of this procedure without any restrictions.”
Dr Klanner concluded by making a plea for stricter individual vehicle approval procedure with
a fixed maximum number of vehicles (less than that for small series approval) that can be
approved in this way.
“It is the responsibility of each Member State to act responsibly. There is no loophole if
everyone takes its responsibility.”
Dr Dolf Lamerigts
Dr Dolf Lamerigts, Technical Affairs Director of the ACEA (The European Automobile
Manufacturer Association) gave an overview of the existing European type approval regime.
While in his view there was no loophole to be closed, “There is always room for
improvements” and he stated that ACEA members were looking forward to the forthcoming
adoption of the Recast Type Approval Directive in 2006 that would extend the current regime
to cover more types and heavier vehicles.
About the individual approval Dr Lamerigts noted that “single vehicle approval by an individual
Member State is only valid in that Member State. It is the responsibility of each Member State
to act responsibly.” He concluded that “there is no loophole if everyone takes its
responsibility.”
“To argue whether it is a loophole or not is not helpful. There is a car for sale which should not
be for sale and therefore something should be done.”
Max Mosley
Following the statement of Dr Lamerigts Mr Mosley commented that “if we assume that Dr
Klanner’s test is correct, that he is right in saying that this car does not comply with European
legislation, then, if the car is for sale in the EU there is something wrong. To argue whether it
is a loophole or not is not helpful.” He added that “there is a car for sale which should not be
for sale and therefore something should be done.”
“Had I been asked to inspect the Landwind and had I found a design of a steering
column going straight to the front bumper I would have been extremely careful in
giving an approval.”
Dr Horst Safarovic
Dr Horst Safarovic of TÜV Nord, a German regional test centre for vehicle approval
explained the operation of such centres. The Jiangling Landwind entered the European
market after having been tested in accordance with the single vehicle approval procedure, by
the TÜV. He focused on the issue of whether there was a need for a harmonisation of the
individual vehicle approval in the EU.
Under German legislation (based on the StVZO) regional TÜV test centres inspected about
260,000 individual M1 vehicles in 2004. He explained that the individual vehicle approval
exists to facilitate various customer needs. In Germany any car that has been off the road for
more than 18 months must be approved before being put back into circulation.


Cont'd vv
 
1 - 20 of 51 Posts
Top