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General safety of motor vehicles

Since the mid-1970s, many directives have contributed to harmonising technical requirements relating to the type-approval of motor vehicles as regards certain aspects of safety and environmental protection. This Regulation aims at reinforcing the applicable rules by introducing the mandatory installation of advanced safety equipment and systems intended to reduce noise and C02 emissions.


Regulation (EC) No 661/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 July 2009 concerning type-approval requirements for the general safety of motor vehicles, their trailers and systems, components and separate technical units intended therefor (Text with EEA relevance).


This Regulation establishes requirements for the type-approval of:

  • the safety of motor vehicles and their trailers;
  • the energy efficiency of motor vehicles by introducing the mandatory installation of tyre pressure monitoring systems and gear shift indicators;
  • the safety and energy efficiency of tyres and their levels of noise emissions.

Types of vehicles concerned

This Regulation applies to:

  • motor vehicles used for the carriage of passengers having at least four wheels (category M);
  • motor vehicles intended for the transportation of goods having at least four wheels (category N);
  • trailers (category O).

Obligations of manufacturers

Manufacturers shall guarantee that new vehicles that are sold, registered or put into service within the European Union (EU) are type-approved in accordance with the provisions of this Regulation.

The Regulation aims at making several UNECE regulations obligatory. Type-approval in accordance with these UNECE regulations shall be considered as EC type-approval.

In order to improve road safety, all vehicles must be equipped with an electronic stability control system. Furthermore, vehicles in categories M2, M3, N2 and N3 must be equipped with an advanced emergency braking system and a lane departure warning system.

Tyres shall satisfy requirements relating to:

  • wet grip;
  • rolling resistance;
  • rolling noise.

In addition, vehicles in category M1 must be equipped with a tyre pressure monitoring system and gear shift indicators.

Obligations of the Member States

Member States shall not grant EC type-approval or national type-approval to vehicles which do not meet the requirements laid down in this Regulation.

Transitional provisions

This Regulation contributes to the simplification of legislation insofar as it repeals a considerable number of basic directives and their amending acts.

This Regulation repeals Directives 70/221/EEC, 70/222/EEC, 70/311/EEC, 70/387/EEC, 70/388/EEC, 71/320/EEC, 72/245/EEC, 74/60/EEC, 74/61/EEC, 74/297/EEC, 74/408/EEC, 74/483/EEC, 75/443/EEC, 76/114/EEC, 76/115/EEC, 76/756/EEC, 76/757/EEC, 76/758/EEC, 76/759/EEC, 76/760/EEC, 76/761/EEC, 76/762/EEC, 77/389/EEC, 77/538/EEC, 77/539/EEC, 77/540/EEC, 77/541/EEC, 77/649/EEC, 78/316/EEC, 78/317/EEC, 78/318/EEC, 78/549/EEC, 78/932/EEC, 89/297/EEC, 91/226/EEC, 92/21/EEC, 92/22/EEC, 92/24/EEC, 92/114/EEC, 94/20/EC, 95/28/EC, 96/27/EC, 96/79/EC, 97/27/EC, 98/91/EC, 2000/40/EC, 2001/56/EC, 2001/85/EC, and 2003/97/EC from 1 November 2014.

It repeals Directive 92/23/EC from 1 November 2017.


ActEntry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Regulation (EC) No 661/2009



OJ L 200 of 31.7.2009

Last updated: 31.08.2010
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