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Old 29.01.2020, 16:28
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Electric Unicycle - Current legal status in Switzerland

Hi everybody!

I'm trying to understand the current state of Electric Unicycles (EUC) in Switzerland and whether I'd be able to use mine or not when I move to Zürich (in 3 months).
First I want to say that I am sorry for the long post and that I have already read the electric scooter thread [1] without finding the information I'm after.
I'm not posting there because EUCs and electric scooters may have different rules (that I am not aware of), and because I have already seen many electric scooters in Zürich from rental services the few times I've traveled there, whereas I don't recall seeing EUCs at all.
During the last days I have been trying to find information regarding the laws for EUCs and so far I've found that, according to official sources from 2015 (see the PDF in the link) [2]:
  • EUCs with a maximum of 2,00 kW motor are allowed.
  • EUCs that do not surpass 25 km/h are allowed.
  • Allowed EUC are equivalent to bicycles.
  • EUCs need to have a license plate attached.
  • EUCs need to have insurance equivalent to motorbikes.
Plus some other requirements, including two that I am not sure of their meaning (due to my limited German):
  • Typengenehmigung erforderlich: Ja
  • Zulassungsprüfung: Ja (gruppenweise Prüfung)
Can somebody help me there?
But the thing is that I cannot find any information regarding which insurances are available for EUCs, nor how to contract them, nor how can one get a license plate (again due to my poor German).
On top of that, I've found that some people had been fined [3] [4] and been told by the police that it is illegal to ride EUCs, contradicting what was stated in the official document from 2015. Though these people didn't provide many details of how they were driving, how they were equipped and their EUC at the moment when the police stopped them.
During the past 6 months I have been using my EUC daily for commuting, and it is so convenient and time-saver that I'm finding it hard to believe that their usage is so restricted in Switzerland... I must say that I ride 80% of the time on the road and the remaining on bicycle lanes, and I do it fully geared up (motorbike gear) and following the traffic rules.
Currently I own a Gotway Tesla V2 which has a maximum speed above the permitted one according to the 2015 Swiss law referred before, but it can be limited with a smartphone app (which I currently do to 30 km/h). But I don't know if having an EUC with a max speed of 50+ km/h limited to 25 km/h by an app is good enough for the Swiss authorities, or if they only accept less powerful EUC that can never go beyond 25 km/h.
What surprises me is that EUCs with a motor up to 2,00 kW are allowed (mine is rated 1,9 kW), and with that max power allowed of course the EUCs are going to have a max speed above 25 km/h, like mine and almost every EUC in the market has as of today.
In practice, is the usage of EUCs really that controlled by the police?
For now I am waiting for a response with these same questions from an EUC seller in Zurich [5], though I must say that they sell less powerful EUCs, like from 4-5 years ago.
Basically I'd like to know if any of you would be so kind to help me figure out whether I can ride my EUC in Zurich (or any other part in Switzerland) or not



Thank you very much!



[1] - https://www.englishforum.ch/transpor...ter-rules.html
[2] - https://www.admin.ch/gov/de/start/do...-id-56870.html
[3] - https://forum.electricunicycle.org/t...n-switzerland/
[4] - https://forum.electricunicycle.org/t...land-lausanne/
[5] - https://www.e-ride.ch
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Old 29.01.2020, 16:53
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Re: Electric Unicycle - Current legal status in Switzerland

You should start by finding out if your exact model has a road allowance.

Zurich traffic agency (STVA) can answer this question for you.

If it has no road allowance (which I strongly suspect) there is no way to drive this legally on any public road.
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Old 29.01.2020, 16:53
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Re: Electric Unicycle - Current legal status in Switzerland

Typengenehmigung erforderlich: Ja
Zulassungsprüfung: Ja (gruppenweise Prüfung)

Type apporval needed: Yes.
Admission test: Yes (group wise/bulk testing possible)

The model needs an formal and official type approval. This is done by the manufacturer or importer. In this process it must be shown that the model fulfills all the legal requirements. Some specs like noise or emission must have been measured by independent certified third party bodies (notified body).
https://www.astra.admin.ch/astra/de/...ologation.html

Each particular vehicle must be tested before it can be admitted for road use. This test can be done in bulk groups rather than individually as it is done with car or motorcycles. In this test it is cross checked that the vehicle is exactly like the one described in the type approval. After that the vehicle gets an individual grey card and can be admitted for road use once it is insured.

If the ECU has no gray card, insurance, and license plate it can only be used on non-public roads. be aware that the definition of public road is quite broad. It includes super market parking spaces which are not closed for public traffic.
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Old 30.01.2020, 23:06
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Re: Electric Unicycle - Current legal status in Switzerland

Thank you EdwinNL and aSwissInTheUS for your responses.


https://www.e-ride.ch also confirmed me that ridding EUCs is not allowed on public areas. They also gave me hope saying that the authorities have a concept for legalizing them, but no details are published officially.
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Old 31.01.2020, 13:13
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Re: Electric Unicycle - Current legal status in Switzerland

I'd be careful, electric unicycles can get you into legal troubles...
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Old 31.01.2020, 14:04
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Re: Electric Unicycle - Current legal status in Switzerland

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They also gave me hope saying that the authorities have a concept for legalizing them, but no details are published officially.
There does not seem a planned change of the VTS https://www.admin.ch/gov/de/start/bu...lassungen.html nor did I find any parliamentary motions https://www.parlament.ch/en to change the current regulations.

Do not hold your breath. A change coming in force before 2023 is very unlikely. I am also not aware of an UNECE regulation change which would cover this vehicle category (Maybe you find something https://www.unece.org/fr/transport/a...s-accueil.html ) and did neither find an EU imitative to uniformly regulated self-balancing vehicles.

Given this, the current laws are applicable and at least the classic Segway is a type approved and street legal self-balancing vehicle. Question remains, could you potentially get a type approval for an EUC given the current legal situation? I would say so see Art. 175 to 178b, and 181 a VTS https://www.admin.ch/opc/de/classifi...ndex.html#a175
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