What changes in France in July

A stricter contrôle technique test, new vehicle restrictions in Paris, and an extension to the eco loans scheme...

Stricter contrôle technique

A tougher new version of France’s contrôle technique “MoT test” comes into effect on July 1, after being delayed in January due to the gilets jaunes protests.

The main target is vehicles which emit clouds of dark smoke. Industry analysts say it will be difficult for diesels more than 15 years old to pass unless they have been well maintained and regularly decoked.

More than 15 million diesels face extra tests targeting pollution, cutting emissions to almost the same level as when the vehicles were new. The test now involves testers pressing harder and longer on the accelerator and vehicles must operate within 25% of the car’s factory pollution settings.

The moves follow last May’s change, which was intended to bring France into line with EU road safety standards.

Petrol cars will also face new tests on emissions of carbon monoxide and CO2, unburned hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides.

Car ban

If you drive an older vehicle, you may now be unable to take it into Paris. Cars or other vehicles that display a Crit’air 5 sticker – meaning vehicles registered between January 1997 and 31 December 2000 for diesel engines, and before 1997 for petrol engines – will no longer be allowed in greater Paris from July 1.

Those with Crit'Air 4 stickers will face greater restrictions. Passenger cars with this sticker will no longer be allowed to drive within Paris between 8am and 8pm. Some websites have said this restriction will be in force Monday to Friday, but it is every day, according to paris.fr, the website of the city's Mairie.

All diesel vehicles, regardless of age, will be banned from 2024, and petrol ones from 2030. all vehicles driving in Paris – and several other cities – must show a Crit’air anti-pollution sticker.

Eco loans

France's zero-interest eco-loans are now extended to include work on all properties over two years old. the éco-prêt à taux zéro (éco-PtZ) – which is capped at €30,000 – was launched in 2009, and is intended to cover work to improve environmental efficiency, such as insulation or double glazing. The scheme that covers the loan ends on December 31, 2021.

Game of drones

From 1 July 2019, information notices must be on display where drones are sold, detailing the 10 rules to follow for any use of a recreational drone.

Rent caps are back in Paris

From July 1 rents in the centre of the capital cannot be 20% higher than a reference rent price set for individual arrondissements. Caps had been imposed in 2015 but were cancelled by courts two years later. now they have been reintroduced and allow for price differences across the city.

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