The German Road Traffic Licensing Regulations (StVZO for short) is a nationwide legal regulation that is based on Section 6 of the Road Traffic Act and is regulated by the Ministry of Transport, Building and Housing. Put simply, the StVZO regulates the general registration of motor vehicles in German road traffic and has existed since 1937. Although the title of the regulation has been changed several times over the decades, the well-known abbreviation StVZO has remained unchanged since 1938. The last new version by the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Housing comes from 2012.
Why is the StVZO losing importance?
Until 1998, the road traffic approval regulations together with the road traffic regulations (StVO) regulated almost all of the nationwide road traffic law. But for some time now, work has been done to dismantle the StVZO and to replace it with other regulations. In a first step, the Federal Ministry began in 1999 with the new regulations for the approval of people in road traffic. This was spun off from the StVZO and replaced by the newly created driving license regulation (FeV). In a further step, the area for the approval of vehicles for road traffic was revised. On March 1, 2007, the approval of motor vehicles in road traffic, including Sections 24-28, Part IIa and Annexes I-VII was finally deleted from the StVZO and replaced by the newly created Vehicle Registration Ordinance (FZV). Most recently, some regulations of the StVZO were in the EC vehicle approval regulation transfer.
the StVZO will be completely abolished at some point
It is currently not yet possible to predict whether and when the obsolete road traffic approval regulations will be abolished in the end. In the near future, however, it is planned to divide the StVZO into two separate regulations, namely the Vehicle Operation Regulation and the Vehicle Authorization Regulation. At what point in time this step is taken by the Federal Ministry, however, cannot currently be precisely estimated. However, the entry into force of these two regulations would mean the final end of the StVZO. Until then, the StVZO will continue to regulate all formal and technical principles for the official registration of motor vehicles in public transport, as well as on public roads and squares.
What is the exact structure of the StVZO?
The currently still valid StVZO is divided into 3 areas. The first part deals exclusively with the general registrations of motor vehicles. The second part of the StVZO deals with operating permits and type approvals. However, this part is not of great importance due to competing EU directives and is also criticized quite sharply because it goes into great detail and sometimes hinders progress. The last and third part of the StVZO concerns the building and operating regulations. This part of the StVZO regulates, for example, the well-known TÜV and emissions inspection, without which no motor vehicle may take part in public transport. In contrast to the Road Traffic Ordinance (StVO), the StVZO does not contain any traffic rules, but rather regulations regarding what vehicles can take part in road traffic under what conditions.
the most important key points & characteristics of the StVZO
- with §§ 63-67 the StVZO contains important rules for cyclists / bicycles
- the StVZO regulates everything that has to do with the registration of the motor vehicles
- the StVZO also regulates the approval of trucks and other vehicles
- StVZO, for example, prescribes a first-aid kit in section 35h
- StVZO regulates the definition of administrative offenses
- The StVZO regulates the engine power and seats as well as the seat belts of the vehicles in § 35 (a)
- the StVZO regulates safety measures for motor vehicles
- the StVZO regulates the type approval for vehicles and things such as license plate lighting, front protection systems, logbook regulations, trailers, lighting devices, warning triangles and warning vests, speed measurement
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