French Court Overturns Sales Ban Of Daimler Vehicles Using R134a

Cameron Aubernon
by Cameron Aubernon
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french court overturns sales ban of daimler vehicles using r134a

France’s Conseil d’Etat announced Monday that it has overturned the government’s ban of a handful of Mercedes-Benz vehicles over parent company Daimler’s refusal to cease usage of R134a coolant currently under phase-out by the European Union.

Reuters reports the ban — issued by France’s ecology minister Ségolène Royal — was overturned after the court found her order unjustified, stating the vehicles affected did not show “a serious threat to the environment.”

Though vehicles sold in the EU were mandated to use R1234yf beginning in 2013, Daimler cited potential, unacceptable safety issues with the new coolant. Instead, the automaker continued to use R134a in its A-Class, B-Class, CLA and SL models, which were the vehicles banned from being sold in France. Daimler plans to replace the outgoing coolant with CO2 systems by 2017.

Cameron Aubernon
Cameron Aubernon

Seattle-based writer, blogger, and photographer for many a publication. Born in Louisville. Raised in Kansas. Where I lay my head is home.

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10 of 13 comments
  • Sproc Sproc on May 06, 2014

    I believe it's a competing technology with R1234yf. It's referred to as R744. Nice summary here: Gotta be safer from a flammability standpoint. I'm just slightly weary of a complex high pressure CO2 system in an enclosed garage.

    • See 2 previous
    • Redav Redav on May 06, 2014

      @cdotson I believe CO2 is toxic at high enough concentrations--not just an asphyxiant. I don't know if 4 lb in a garage is enough to be a hazard, but I suspect it's less of an issue than having a gasoline link.

  • Psychoboy Psychoboy on May 06, 2014

    carbon dioxide? intentionally concentrated and installed in the front end of cars where it could be easily released into the atmosphere and awaken ManBearPig? tell me it can't be so! I hope Daimler has bought all the carbon credits they need from AlGore.

    • See 1 previous
    • Rpn453 Rpn453 on May 19, 2014

      @piro No, he's totally serial.

  • NeilM NeilM on May 06, 2014

    I propose a heat activated release valve for the CO2 system. If your car catches fire, the A/C puts it out. Genius!

    • Piro Piro on May 08, 2014

      Good point! Massively safer than most refrigerants, especially 1234yf, boycotted for this exact reason (horrific chemical fire).

  • Corey Lewis Corey Lewis on May 08, 2014

    That's a nice photo of a Toyota Matrix with redesigned grille.