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WLTP “Worldwide harmonized light vehicle test procedure”

WLTP has been introduced incrementally in the EU and Switzerland since September 2017. As of September 2018, all newly registered vehicles must have WLTP measurement values.

WLTP replaces the previously applicable “New European Driving Cycle” (NEDC). This change is intended to ensure that the indicated consumption values of new vehicles are more representative of reality. WLTP takes longer, uses higher speeds, and features a shorter stopping time.

This results in official fuel consumption and emission data which is higher than the values measured using the older NEDC procedure. Increases of up to 25% in vehicles’ CO2 values can be expected as part of the WLTP procedure. The increased emission and energy efficiency values may also have negative effects on vehicle taxation.

Our tip: when buying new vehicles, pay attention to the energy efficiency value (ideally A or B), look for a low CO2 emission value and investigate alternatives using electric or hybrid drive technology.

In contrast to the EU, a special provision applies to the introduction of WLTP in Switzerland. The set date for the change is the import date, not the date on which the vehicle was first registered. This means that vehicles with the old Euro 6b emission standard can still be registered after 1 September 2018, but can no longer be imported. Vehicles that have been verified according to WLTP can be identified through emission standard Euro 6c or higher.

A minor difference with major impact. Here is a small excerpt as an illustration (source: UNECE):

Test content WLTP vs NEDC
Test route
23.25 km / 11 km
Test duration
30 min. / 20 min.
Test temperature
14 and 23 degrees / 20–30 degrees
74 to 131 km/h / 34 to 120 km/h
Special equipment
Taken into account / not taken into account

FAQ: The Swiss Federal Roads Office (FEDRO) has compiled an FAQ for the introduction of WLTP in Switzerland: https://www.newsd.admin.ch/newsd/message/attachments/54736.pdf