TÜV inspection - major defects again on the increase
The percentage of vehicles exhibiting major defects in the general vehicle inspection at TÜV NORD has now increased to 19.6 %. This means that more than 2.2 million defective cars would be on the roads in northern Germany if their faults had not been repaired as a result of the TÜV inspection. If this percentage were applied to all the vehicles in Germany, there would be a total of 8.4 million vehicles which could place the safety of other road users and/or the integrity of the environment at risk. But there is also an upwards trend at the other end of the spectrum: the number of vehicles which passed the inspection without any faults at all has also increased again - to an impressive 58 %. These are the results of statistical analysis of the TÜV inspections which were performed by the TÜV independent experts at the 220 TÜV STATIONS and at more than 10,000 partner workshops between July 2010 and June 2011. Harald Reutter and Klaus Jürgensen presented the current figures from TÜV NORD in Bremen in the year which marked the 60th anniversary of the general vehicle inspection and the 50th anniversary of the TÜV badge.
The past year was a special year in the history of the general inspection, as it was introduced for the first time exactly 60 years ago, on 1 December 1951. There had been technical inspections before, but these were performed on the specific instruction of the relevant authorities, and there were no fixed intervals. Then, fifty years ago, in other words in 1961, the TÜV inspection badge was introduced - providing a visible sign that vehicles had been tested for road safety by the TÜV and also showing the date for the next inspection.
As Harald Reutter, Managing Director of TÜV NORD Mobilität, says: "The TÜV badge has been a success story of wide-ranging significance. It stands for technically reliable vehicles, a high level of traffic safety and also ease of administration."
However, the results from 2011 are not necessarily a cause for celebration.
The reason: The negative trend is continuing. In the past five years, the percentage of cars with major defects has risen steadily (from 17.1% in 2007 to the present level of 19.6 % (previous year: 19.0 %).
But: The number of vehicles that have presented themselves for inspection and had no faults has also continuously increased: this year, almost 58 out of every 100 cars were considered defect-free (previous year: 57.5 %, the percentage for 2007 was 52.7 %).
The number of vehicles with slight defects has fallen, now amounting to 22.7 per cent (previous year: 23.5 %, 2007: 30.2 %).
The number of vehicles considered to be totally unroadworthy is relatively constant at between 0.03 and 0.04 per cent.
The contrasting trends (on the one hand more vehicles with major defects, on the other hand also more vehicles without any defects whatsoever) were explained by Klaus Jürgensen when presenting the current TÜV NORD figures: "On the one hand, manufacturers produce good cars which can still be defect-free after many years. On the other hand, too many drivers do not concern themselves sufficiently with the technical aspects of their cars. Drivers want to have a well-functioning means of transport to take them safely from A to B, but do not want to devote the necessary attention to it. Many also shy away from regular workshop inspection and maintenance for reasons of cost, and that is a mistake. On the other hand, those who take care of their vehicles and have them serviced by a qualified workshop need have no fear of the inspection."
The type of defects that are found also indicate that many drivers do not take enough care to ensure that their vehicles are safe. "Lights and electrical systems" are still by far top of the list – despite the fact that it is relatively easy to check the vehicle lighting. The list of defects which occur more than once also shows that there is often more than one defect as regard the lights. These results accord with the experiences from the lighting initiative, which is also always carried out by the TÜV in the month of October.
Altogether, the most frequently found defects appear in this order: "lights, electrical systems", "brakes", "axles, wheels, tyres" and "environmental pollution".
The older the vehicles become, the higher the number of those which do not receive their TÜV badge straight away. At the first inspection, at the age of three years, 5.6 per cent of the cars exhibit major defects (previous year: 5.2 per cent). At the age of five, it is already 10.2 per cent (previous year: 10.4%) and so it goes on up to the eleven-year-olds, where 27.9 per cent have to visit the workshop for repairs.
The average mileage which is to be considered as an additional factor in the number and type of defects is now 52,656 kilometres in the case of three-year-old cars and 133,528 kilometres in the case of eleven-year-olds.
The Toyota Prius was the best car again this year and was winner of the "Golden Badge". The Prius is designed as a hybrid vehicle, and is powered by a combination of internal combustion engine and electric drive. The well-dimensioned batteries did not exhibit negative features in the safety inspections and also demonstrated a long lifetime.
Harald Reutter: "In 2011 it has again become clear that the Prius, as a hybrid vehicle, offers high levels of safety. And we at TÜV NORD are seriously committed to ensuring that this is true of all vehicles in the electromobility sector. We support the objective of bringing attractive and safe electric vehicles into circulation as rapidly as possible. In fact, just a short time ago we opened an eSTATION as a solar vehicle charging station and we now operate a small fleet of electric vehicles ourselves. Our engineers are very involved with the theme of electromobility - for vehicle and traffic safety, for reliable batteries, improved range and more consumer-friendly and secure handling of data."
About TÜV NORD Mobilität
TÜV NORD Mobilität aims to help people enjoy driving, whilst promoting road safety. Services offered to the public include vehicle inspections and driving tests, vehicle assessments and valuations. However, the company also offers advisory services to the automotive and automotive supply industries during product development, and provides consulting and marketing services to a wide variety of customers. A further aspect is the Medical and Psychological Institute, where doctors and psychologists assess drivers who have lost their licences in order to help them re-enter the world of driving.
About the TÜV NORD Group
With over 10,000 employees, TÜV NORD Group is one of the largest technical service providers, offering its advisory, service and inspection expertise in over 70 countries throughout the world. Areas of activity include Industry Services, Mobility, and Education and Training. TÜV NORD Group occupies a unique position in the sector based on its work in the fields of raw materials and aerospace.
Guiding principle: "Making our world safer".
Contact for this press release:
TÜV NORD Group
Rainer Camen Telephone +49 (0)201 825-2331, Fax -2559
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