France's highest administrative court said yesterday that authorities must resume registering Daimler vehicles, which were formally banned in late July, Automotive News reports, even though they are still equipped with R134a air-conditioning refrigerant.

The refrigerant is illegal in the European Union and is the reason for this legal battle, which has restricted the registration of Mercedes-Benz A-, B-, CLA- and SL-Class vehicles in France. But it turns out that the French government's use of an EU "safeguard" provision to ban registration of the Mercedes-Benz vehicles, which allows countries to block sales of vehicles that would "seriously harm the environment," wasn't justified. Why? Because the use of R134a doesn't appear to be an immediate danger to the environment, the Paris-based court said.

The new chemical, R1234yf, was made the EU's standard for a/c systems because it emits fewer greenhouse gases into the environment. Daimler says it continues to use R134a because it found R1234yf to be flammable in testing. The German automaker also argues that approval of the use of R134a by the German Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA) should be good enough permission for it to sell cars in Europe.

The current state of the situation prompted Daimler to say it expects French authorities to start registering its vehicles tomorrow.

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
  • 2015 Toyota Highlander
    MSRP: $29,765 - $44,140
    2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee
    MSRP: $29,995 - $64,895
    2015 Honda Accord
    MSRP: $22,105 - $33,630
    2015 Honda Civic
    MSRP: $18,290 - $26,740
    2015 Mazda Mazda3
    MSRP: $16,945 - $25,545
    Share This Photo X