From 1 January 2023, diesel vehicles must be tested to see if their particulate filters are working. As a result an estimated 20% of the diesel vehicles on Switzerland’s roads may not pass roadworthiness tests, reported RTS. Vehicles that fail these tests can no longer legally by driven.
According to Patrick Schnelli, an expert in the canton of St. Gallen, a dashboard light is normally triggered when there is a problem with the exhaust system, but sometimes this does not work. For this reason it is necessary to test exhaust gases.
Some particulate filters don’t work. Sometimes we find vehicles emitting millions of particulates, well above the limit of 250,000 per cm3, said Schnelli.
The problem is potentially huge. Nearly 30% of the vehicles on Swiss roads are diesel and one in five vehicles with a filter may have a defective one.
The new rules reflect a lack of consistent emissions standards and the possibility of damage to filtres over time. So testing was considered necessary.
In addition, changing particulate filters is expensive, costing between CHF 2,000 and CHF 4,000. And parts are not always available.
A significant number of diesel vehicles may need to be retired from Swiss roads over the coming years.
RTS article (in French) – Take a 5 minute French test now
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