New Type Approval Regulation for Automotive Industry Introduced in Turkey

Last Sunday on April 19th, 2020, the Regulation on Approval and Market Surveillance of Motor Vehicles and their Trailers (the “MARTOY” as its Turkish abbreviation or the “new Regulation”) was published in the Official Gazette and thus was adapted to the European Union’s (EU) revised new Directive no: 2018/858/EC.

This regulation essentially regulates the administrative provisions and technical requirements for the type-approval procedure and placing on the market of all passenger (Category M) and commercial vehicles (Category N) and their trailers (Category O), and their systems, components and separate technical units. In short, it determines how the automotive industry will be shaped and how it will work. The new version of the regulation will come into force on 1 September 2020 in parallel with the European Union, and the current regulation provisions will continue to be applied until that date.

Former MARTOY, with the full name of Regulation on Type Approval of Motor Vehicles and Trailers (2007/46/EC), was also the replica of the Directive No 2007/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 September 2007 establishing a framework for the approval of motor vehicles and their trailers, and of systems, components and separate technical units intended for such vehicles.

With more than 1,000 component suppliers supporting the production of OEMs, Turkey is home to many global suppliers. Almost three quarters of the production in Turkey is destined for foreign markets, making Turkey the biggest vehicle exporter to European markets.

In order to meet the global as well as European technical requirements, Turkey follows a strict technical legislation in the manufacturing and automotive industries. The secondary legislation is much like identical to Acquis Communautaire, which is automatically adopted into local regulations, whereas the primary legislation follows the similar approach and mindset. The EU acquis is embedded in Turkey’s national regulations as possible, as in MARTOY, while in especially deep technical areas the regulations of the EU and the United Nations (UN) are automatically applicable as national legislation.

As the backbone of the automotive industry is destined to the European market, it is inevitable that the New Regulation should also follow the EU legislation. Therefore it is natural that the changes in the EU’s bible for automotive production is identically reflected in Turkish technical regulation.

At the beginning of 2016, even when the diesel scandal had not yet erupted, the European Commission had started work on amending the 2007/46 regulation. The diesel scandal has made this need much sharper and urgent. All these discussions continued for two years and finally came to a conclusion with the directive no 2018/858/EC published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 14/06/2018. The Directive No.: 2018/858/EC will enter into force in the European Union on 01/09/2020, roughly four months from today. Member countries – and as a result, automotive manufacturers (both the main industry and the supplier base) will be able to conclude applications for components, systems and type approvals under the new regulation from 5 July 2020 onwards.

Let’s jump after this long introduction, to the particulars of the EU Directive No. 2018/585/EC, or from the perspective of our national legislation, the MARTOY:

The new regulation lays down rules on technical requirements and procedures across the EU to ensure that new types of motor vehicles and trailers comply with EU-approved safety and environmental protection requirements. Turkey, being outside of the EU on one hand and being within the Customs Union (“CU”) on the other hand comes into play at this point. Any type approval for a complete vehicle or a system or component that bears the stamp of an EU member is valid in Turkey. Yet, a manufacturer may acquire a Turkish national type approval for Turkish or non-EU markets.

Although the regulation does not contain significant changes in technical requirements applicable to vehicles, systems, and components, it includes major revisions to applicable processes and procedures and introduces a number of additional controls to ensure the robustness of the type approval process. In addition to specifying individual EU Regulations and UN ECE regulations that vehicles, systems, and components must comply with, it regulates issues such as type approval documents (information documents, type approval certificates, Certificate of Conformity, etc.) and production compliance requirements. The regulation covers the passenger (M category) and commercial vehicles (N category) and the trailers to be used in these vehicles.

The most significant change to the current MARTOY and naturally to the Directive No.: 2007/46/EC refers to the issuance of the type approvals, in order to establish sound measures to avoid repeating of such scandal as a lesson learnt. Under the current regulation, type approvals were given mainly through prototypes provided at the stages of production and before. The new regulation introduces a stronger market surveillance mechanism that the former system may not have served well as observed in the diesel scandal.

In this respect, worth to mention that following the European experience and practice, the Turkish side has taken a number of steps and adapted the new Law No.: 7223 on Product Safety and Technical Regulations (a short review of the new law here), replacing Law No.: 4703 on Technical Legislation and introduced the Market Surveillance Regulation of the Ministry of Trade (a short review of the law regulation here). The new set of regulations also form up a whole together with the Council of Ministers’ Regulation on Market Surveillance and Inspection of the Products, no: 2001/3529 and the Ministry of Industry’s Regulation on Market Surveillance and Inspection of Automotive Products. I once drafted a paper on recall of automotive products, taking advantage of this occasion, let me open it to public access.

In this way, through the framework of effective market surveillance, regular inspection of vehicles already introduced to the market and sharing of these control results with the public are integrated into the legislation.

It is obvious that testing and inspection of a vehicle or its components or systems is the heart of the whole process. This crucial function is performed by the technical services. This system, which already exists in the current MARTOY and Directive No. 2018/858/EC, is further strengthened by the new regulation. In the diesel scandal, it was observed that technical services were able to produce misleading results. With the new regulation, a strict set of performance criterion and independent auditing system are introduced for granting to and maintaining for the technical services the authority to test and inspect vehicles, components and systems. This authority given in the Directive No.: 2018/858/EC to the European Commission and the member countries will be carried out by the Ministry of Industry and Technology in Turkey according to our national legislation.

The regulation also necessitates that manufacturers will allow access to external controls in the vehicle’s software protocol, including the prohibition of defeat devices, which was one of the most important actors of the diesel scandal.

The most prominent points in the new MARTOY, that is the transposition of Directive No.: 2018/858/EU are as follows:

  • Approval Authority: As in the past, in accordance with Directive No. 2018/858/EC, each Member State is required to appoint an Approval Authority responsible for type approvals and an agency responsible for market surveillance. Where an Institution is responsible for both activities, roles and responsibilities need to be strictly separated and the two activities should be managed autonomously as part of separate structures. Each member state is also obliged to review and evaluate the functioning of the Type Approval Authority and the Market Surveillance Agency at least once every four years and to transmit the results of this assessment to the Commission. This duty and authority with MARTOY belongs to the Ministry of Industry and Technology as in the current MARTOY.
  • Assessment of Type Approval Bodies: The European Commission will evaluate the procedures applied by each Type Approval Agency to issue type approvals, ensure the suitability of production, and identify and monitor technical services, and publish the results of these assessments every five years. Turkey also agree with this assessment of the principle of reciprocity with the new MARTOY.
  • Identification, monitoring and review of Technical Services: 2018/858/EC and the new MARTOY introduce detailed regulations to ensure the competence, impartiality and independence of Technical Services. The Technical Service applications will be evaluated by the respective Type Approval Authority together with two other Type Approval Authorities and an evaluation team composed of the European Commission. The assignment of the Technical Service will be valid for five years. After this period, the evaluation application needs to be repeated. In addition, during the appointment period, the Type Approval Authority will continuously monitor the performance of the Technical Service and evaluate the Technical Service every 30 months at the latest.
  • Information Sharing and Execution Forum: Regulation No. 2018/858/EC created an Implementation Information Exchange Forum within the European Union, which will be attended by representatives of Member States’ Type Approval Authorities and Market Surveillance Institutions. The forum includes best practices, enforcement issues, interpretation issues, etc. It is responsible for exchanging information and coordinating sanction activities such as compliance verification testing. With the lessons learned from the diesel scandal, the Forum aims to provide a more homogeneous interpretation of the legislation, transparency in cases of non-compliance, and better and coordinated market surveillance activities. Turkey also adopted this forum into its national legislation.
  • Market surveillance: New requirements on market surveillance have been introduced to ensure that the vehicles and components introduced in the market comply with type approval requirements, are safe and are not harmful to the environment. Each Market Surveillance Agency is required to conduct at least one conformity verification test and at least five conformity verification tests per year for every 40,000 new motor vehicles registered in the country of preceding year. For Market Surveillance Agencies performing more than five compliance verification tests per year, at least 20% of the tests must be emission tests. Turkey also joins in such cooperation with the precedent that it has sufficient infrastructure and integration with the European Commission and the member states.
  • Responsibilities of manufacturers, representatives, importers and distributors: The new MARTOY more specifically defines the specific responsibilities of manufacturers, manufacturers’ representatives, importers and distributors for both type approval and market surveillance.
  • Frequency of Compliance with Production Controls: The new Regulation obliges manufacturers to carry out compliance checks and tests at least once every three years.
  • Validity of all vehicle type approval documents: New MARTOY requires that the type approvals information package be re-validated for compliance with the applicable legislation if the type approval information package has not been updated for seven years for category M1 (passenger cars) and N1 (light commercial vehicles, which are also based on market dynamics used as passenger cars in Turkey) and for ten years for other category vehicles.
  • Safety measures and recall: The new regulation provides more detailed provisions on safety measures such as restriction of the placing the vehicle into the market or recalls and coordination of those activities. The provisions also allow the European Commission to implement safety measures and initiate EU-wide recalls. The new MARTOY allows the integration of Turkish Ministry of Industry into EU systems, including RAPEX and ICSMS.
  • Access to Repair and Maintenance Information: Existing regulations for accessing internal diagnostic (OBD) system information and other repair and maintenance information for independent operators defined essentially under 715/2007/EC and 595/2009/EC are re-identified under the 2018/858/EC and the new MARTOY. The manufacturers will provide independent operators with unlimited, standardized and fair access to OBD information, diagnostics and other equipment, software tools, including full references and current downloads of applicable software and vehicle repair and maintenance information, and this information will be available for machine reading and will be presented in an easily accessible format.
  • Penalties: 2018/858/EC introduces a proportionate and dissuasive penalty arrangement, and fines up to 30,000 € for each vehicle, component or system that carries nonconformity, while the new MARTOY leaves such measures under already existing legislation of Law No: 4703 and the market surveillance regulations.

The new MARTOY will take effect on September 1, 2020, on the same date as 2018/858/EC, but the type, component and system approvals issued under the current MARTOY will continue to be valid.

You can find the comparative text of the old MARTOY and the new MARTOY here (only in Turkish), and the comparative text of the 2018/858/EC and the new MARTOY here (English text of 2018/858/EC and Turkish text of MARTOY).

There is much more to talk about the new MARTOY and the EU / 2018/858 in particular, and automotive legislation in general, but it would not end with writing, so I’m cutting it here.