France continues to dispute over Mercedes sales ban
PARIS/FRANKFURT (Reuters) -
Following the German luxury carmaker contested the move in court the authorities vowed to keep a sales halt on the Mercedes A - Class, B - CLA and Class.
Registrations "will remain forbidden in France as long as the business does not to adapt to European regulations", the surroundings ministry said in an emailed statement.
France has stopped sales of Mercedes automobiles assembled since June 12 because of Daimler's refusal to cease utilizing the airconditioning coolant R134a, prohibited from new vehicles since the beginning of the full year. The blocked models account for the majority of the brand's French company and 2 percent of international deliveries.
An administrative court had ordered France on Thursday to reexamine the case after Daimler asserted that the sales halt had not followed the right EU "safeguard" processes.
Daimler responded angrily to Friday's statement, calling it "certainly incomprehensible" and vowing further legal action.
The dispute focuses on a decision to let Daimler continue using R134a - a globalwarming gas 1, 400 times more powerful than co2 - because of security issues about the replacement compound R1234yf.
That choice sidesteps the demand to use R1234yf, made by Dupont and Honeywell.
The EU's "mobile air conditioning" directive prohibits R134a in vehicles approved for sale because the beginning of 2011, but those certified before have until 2017 to abide.
Both compounds may ignite when in connection with exceptionally hot surfaces or engine parts, releasing hazardous hydrogen fluoride gas, but the Honeywell coolant can do this at somewhat lower temperatures.
German Transport Minister Peter Ramsauer has urged Brussels to let until the KBA finishes additional crashtest evaluation in coming weeks Daimler continue utilizing the coolant.
However, safeguard procedures enable until Brussels decides whether their KBA certification complies with European law EU authorities to prevent sales of the Mercedes automobiles.
National authorities can block sales once they imagine an "incorrect application" of EU regulations and when the vehicles would "severely damage the environment", based on the guidelines.
The carmaker said it would now return to court to challenge the sales halt on the grounds that the compound being phased out does not present a serious environmental hazard.
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