Record smog in Paris is forcing French lawmakers to create low emission zones. In a move to curb vehicle use by 2020, cars over 20 years old will have limited access to Paris. Will this move signal a ban on classic cars in city centers?
A letter from French cabinet member Caroline Daude says this is not the case. She writes; "These new measures aim to prevent the dirtiest vehicles – the oldest, either burning petrol or diesel – from accessing some areas in Paris, so as to create low emission zones. In such a context, the classic vehicles eligible for your [classic car] events will be treated separately. They cannot be compared with less cherished older vehicles that are used in the city on a daily basis."
She adds: "I remind you that we are not restricting the use of vehicles at all during weekends, either. So you’ll be able to use them on Saturdays and Sundays in Paris. Some exceptional authorizations might be granted in addition to this."
But what constitutes a classic car to the government? Will it be up to historic car organizations such as the Vincennes en Anciennes or the Fiva (Fédération Internationale des Véhicules Anciens) to decide if your car is a classic? We still do not have an answer.
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And what happens to younger classics? Geoff Lancaster, the spokesperson for the Federation of British Historic Vehicles Clubs, thinks that younger classics may be missed by the legislation. He states; "They seem to be using the internationally accepted definition of “historic”, which is based on vehicles being over 30 years old. There is a flourishing young timers movement in France, and – of course – these would be caught by the legislation.".
Source: Classic Cars for Sale