The TÜV association warns that the regular main inspection (HU) of motor vehicles needs to be modernized. The association’s annual report also highlights the push for special safety checks on electric cars.
Software is becoming increasingly important, according to TÜV
In the annual report from the TÜV Association, TÜV CEO Joachim Bühler calls for “access to the original data and software of the vehicles.” This is elementarily important for the experts to be able to carry out a comprehensive inspection. In our digital age, it is no longer just mechanical things like braking power that play a fundamental role. Due to the increase in assistance systems that drivers are relying on more and more, the functionality of these systems also has to be meticulously tested. And not only that. In times of increasing cyberattacks, it is also necessary to check the extent to which a vehicle is protected against access by third parties. In addition to modernizing the main inspection, the association is also calling for digitalization in the registration of vehicles.
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If you consider that in 2022, the most important information about a car is still recorded in the associated papers, you can understand this quite well. Thus, from the point of view of the TÜV Association, it would be appropriate here rather to switch to a digital register in which the vehicles are listed. This would not only provide a better overview for the experts, but would also prevent fraud when buying or selling vehicles. But the special features of electric cars also play a major role in the desire for digitization. After all, it would be possible to view specific data such as the condition of a battery. On the other hand, they would like to get more involved with the batteries themselves. While their condition has so far only been assessed with the help of a simple inspection, in the future the entire high-voltage system will also be tested in order to minimize risks.
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Brakes are Achilles’ heel of electric cars
The report also reveals that electric cars will not only be scrutinized in the area of battery technology. On top of that, attention must be paid to their braking technology. This is because electric cars are more prone to corroding brakes than classic internal combustion engines. The principle behind this is recuperation. Here, the engine brake regularly engages to feed energy back into the battery along the lines of a dynamo. While this may make vehicles with electric drives more efficient, it also ensures that drivers of e-cars step on the brake pedal less and less often.
Instead, over time, the tendency is developing toward what is known as one-pedal driving, in which mainly the accelerator pedal is used and recuperation takes care of braking. If, in an emergency, the brake disc then fails to function due to corrosion caused by non-use, the consequences can be severe. Consequently, according to the report, owners of an electric car should have their brakes checked regularly and adjust their driving style. For example, it is advisable to also use the normal brake every time you drive. The demands of the TÜV are reasonable, as they keep in mind the great technical development of cars. Let’s hope that appropriate adjustments will be made.