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Old 28.09.2020, 15:10
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Vehicle modification registration

Hello everyone,

I have recently had a car suspension failure that would be too expensive to fix by using OEM parts. The only available alternatives would be technically seen as 'modifications' and it's the procedure of registering vehicle modifications in Switzerland that gets me confused.

I have got in touch with local Strassenverkehrsamt (ZH). They refused to answer any of my questions and have just forwarded me to the following handbook. The 'modifications' that I am planning to do fall into category G and therefore require "Eignungserklärung Fahrzeughersteller oder Garantie Umbauer mit Nachweis APS" where APS stands for "Anerkannte Prufstelle".

My questions are:

1) The aftermarket parts manufacturer can provide me with a "Eignungserklärung für Federnsätze und Gewindefahrwerke". Given they are not the OEM (Fahrzeughersteller) would this be sufficient or is there additional paperwork / certifications that I need to obtain?

2) Are there any requirements to the garage that installs the suspension (certifications, location) and/or is there any additional paperwork that they would need to fill?

Thank you in advance!
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Old 28.09.2020, 21:49
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

If the aftermarket Dealer is Swiss dealer they most likely will provide you with the correct papers. If it is German they might be not suitable as the German TÜV is not a Swiss recoginized APS.

As far as I know there are no special requirements or paperwork needed regarding installation. But you must get a re-test after installation at the MFK/STvA/SAN (you have to book a special modification approval test).

Simpler if you do not change the type of the suspension (any reason for that?) A suspension o the same type is a class E change which only needs a parts manufacture declaration of fitness. This is much simpler.
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Old 28.09.2020, 23:43
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

Thanks for the response!
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Simpler if you do not change the type of the suspension (any reason for that?) A suspension o the same type is a class E change which only needs a parts manufacture declaration of fitness. This is much simpler.
The car in question is an Audi RS4, which comes from factory with a suspension system where all shock absorbers are interconnected so the car can pump the hydraulic fluid from side to side whenever it sees fit. DRC (or Dynamic Ride Control) is its marketing name. These systems tend to leak so they require refilling once in a while. Naturally, doing so requires custom tooling which virtually no garages outside of the dealer network have. As a result, each such service is well into four figures so it's very common (even among the purists) to go for aftermarket setups, which ultimately require type change and fall into category G.
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If the aftermarket Dealer is Swiss dealer they most likely will provide you with the correct papers. If it is German they might be not suitable as the German TÜV is not a Swiss recoginized APS.
The aftermarket parts will likely come from a company called KW, who will happily sell you the Eignungserklärung für Federnsätze und Gewindefahrwerke through their website. My main concern is whether this is sufficient.
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Old 29.09.2020, 13:25
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

If you buy a KW coilover from any Swiss shop or their direct sales, you will receive a paper with the box. I'm guessing this will be installed in a shop, who will sign the paper. They could also pass the inspection for you.

If you want to take care of the MFK yourself, you'll register for a voluntary inspection for a specific chane, and you will tell them it's a change in the type of suspension. You'll get an appointment, and you will take the car there, where they will only check the suspension and nothing else. They will check your paper, that should match the car Typenschein on your grey card, and the serial/model designation on the dampers and springs. They will also check the stamp/signature of importer, and the stamp/signature of the shop that did the installation.

Job done.
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Old 29.09.2020, 13:44
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

DTC (Dynamic Test Center) is one of the few Swiss approved APS.
What KW calls "DTC Prüfbericht" is more generally said a "Nachweis APS".

The simplest is to get in touch with KW and ask them directly if they have the needed "DTC Prüfbericht" for your specific car and your favorite springs. The Problem might be that you have an RS and not just a simply an A. The needed "DTC Prüfbericht/Nachweis APS" might not exists as the absence of a variable, adaptive suspension might not be safe in all possible driving conditions the RS offers.

Or in other words: KW might have the needed papers, may be not. Only they now if they have them for your actual car.
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Old 29.09.2020, 17:38
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

Clear. Thanks guys!
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They will also check the stamp/signature of importer, and the stamp/signature of the shop that did the installation.
One final silly question - would it also work if I buy and fit the suspension outside of Switzerland?
It seems that KW also supports this flow, albeit at a slightly higher price for the paperwork.
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Old 02.03.2021, 10:11
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

I am also looking to change my suspension(front and rear dampers) as I failed the suspension test during MFK. Spoken to 2 different shops around pricing out the change and it seems like the parts are quite expensive. One of the shops mentioned I could bring my own parts and he would only charge for the labor.


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Simpler if you do not change the type of the suspension (any reason for that?) A suspension o the same type is a class E change which only needs a parts manufacture declaration of fitness. This is much simpler.
My question is around what sort of paperwork I will need if I am not changing the suspension system(staying with shock and spring) but just replacing the faulty dampers. Would any aftermarket shock be OK as a replacement or does it have to be on an approved list?

I've priced out 4 different options, the two lower end options coming from https://www.teile-direkt.ch/ which I would assume would provide the necessary paperwork and are mentioned as OEM replacements(Bilstein B4 and SACHS).

As I'm still thinking like I'm in the US, I am also wondering if I can step up and upgrade my suspension since I'm going to be paying for the labor. The first option would be Bilstein B12 which would change both the shock and the spring. Would also lower the car 15MM in the front and 20MM in the back which I could already see as a problem during inspection. The spring and shock are both sold on many .ch sites, so I'm assuming the part has been approved. My doubt is if I buy the part from a .de site(as its 40% cheaper after shipping + duties), does the Strassenverkehrsamt have a part list of approved parts or does every part require separate paperwork? Logically, I would think they have a database but DMV around the world aren't typically associated with logic

Last option is KONI Special ACTIVE which I found at an excellent price point from a .de site but I haven't found any resellers in CH for my specific shock. I've emailed KONI.de to see if this specific part is approved in CH and am waiting to hear back. I'm assuming if they come back that they haven't gone thru with swiss approval for that specific part, I wouldn't be able to install without potentially having problems during the re-test?
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Old 02.03.2021, 12:22
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

If you get OEM spec, you can buy from wherever.

If you change something in the spec, then you either buy cheap from abroad and then pay extra for the paperwork from a swiss shop, or you buy directly from a swiss shop. Second option might even be cheaper.
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Old 02.03.2021, 13:19
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

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If you get OEM spec, you can buy from wherever.

If you change something in the spec, then you either buy cheap from abroad and then pay extra for the paperwork from a swiss shop, or you buy directly from a swiss shop. Second option might even be cheaper.
Thank you for the reply. Might be too much of a gamble for me to order from outside Switzerland. Going to run it by the mechanic and see what he thinks but mostly going to err on the side of caution and just buy the cheaper OEM replacements from the Swiss shop. The website I referenced seems to just be a German part supplier with a .ch address. Other swiss sites have specifically mentioned the "CH Report Included" but this one does not. Do I need to specifically request documentation or would they know which parts would "change something in the spec" and send the report if neede?
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Old 02.03.2021, 16:29
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Re: Vehicle modification registration

With the eibach springs being dark grey they look quite OEM already and if you want you could rub off the logo. I never had any questions with mine but they were a few years old before the car was tested. I also had no questions on the uprated adjustable anti-roll bars but again they were black. Anything black basically won't get looked at. The Konis if they're the adjustable ones are bright yellow so may well draw attention, to themselves but also the springs, but so are the Bilstein B12s. Whether they would be a problem with the MFK or not I don't know. I mean, they're certainly safe enough for the car but I don't know if they'd really be counted as a modification.

You could also maybe go for Sachs "m-technic" shocks with eibach springs for a less obvious look. Sachs are considered OEM.

If your old shocks are no good then any new shock will be a large improvement.

If you google "bilstein b12 mfk" or "eibach pro kit mfk" etc you will find the same questions in German but possibly not any real answer. I would suppose as long as you bought from a proper Swiss supplier that whatever you got would come with Swiss approval.
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