What are the advantages and disadvantages?

The collection gray card, officially called CIC (collection registration certificate), is intended for all vehicles over 30 years old, which are no longer produced and whose characteristics have not changed. It is not issued automatically, nor is it obviously mandatory, it must be requested by the vehicle owner.

Since 2009 and the transition to the new SIV (vehicle registration system), it is less restrictive, as it allows you to travel outside your department, without having to request authorization from the City Hall. More advantageous then. However, it imposes certain restrictions. What are the advantages and disadvantages? Caradisiac takes stock.

The advantages of the gray collection card

1/ One CT (technical control) every 5 years instead of two

From the moment the gray card is a “CIC”, the validity of the CT increases to 5 years. But beware, the current one remains valid for two years. It is the first made under CIC that becomes valid for 5 years. Better, for pre-1960 cars, it is simply removed.

This is a perk that has led many homeowners to take the plunge, especially since 2018 and the grip of said CT.

2/ No more geographic traffic restrictions

As we have seen, you can now drive anywhere in France and even abroad, like a car with a normal gray card.

3/ No traffic restrictions on ZFEms

In ZFEm (low mobility emission zones), it is necessary to affix a Crit’Air sticker to circulate, more or less severe depending on the location or the pollution of the day. With a CIC, these restrictions disappear completely, except in the case of a pollution spike. For example, a 1989 Peugeot 205 with a normal gray card is prohibited from driving on weekdays in Paris, the same passed in the CIC is authorized to drive at all times.

4/ Free enrollment

Cars with normal gray card must display European license plates (black on white background, regional logo). Those who are at CIC can go back to the old signs (silver writing on a black background, no need to mention the region). They can even become square, rounded, etc.

5/ No more gray card withdrawals in case of a serious accident

Vehicles with a gray collection card lose the status of object of use to become “heritage object”. Consequently, in the event of a serious accident, the expert cannot apply the VEI (economically irreparable vehicle) or VGE (severely damaged vehicle) procedure. Therefore, there is no more administrative hold of the gray card pending repairs. You can therefore IN ALL CASES repair the car. It will still require new knowledge to resume circulation.

6/ Cheapest insurance

Each insurer is free to charge lower premiums for older vehicles. Some also start to have attractive prices from the age of 15 or 20. But in gray card collection, it’s even simpler and even cheaper. Given the very low average mileage covered by the “old men”, the premiums are on par with the daisies.

The disadvantages of the gray collection card

1/ A mandatory certificate

In addition to the usual documents for obtaining the registration certificate, it will be necessary to present a certificate proving that the vehicle is billable in the legislative sense (over 30 years old, no longer on the market, unaltered characteristics, etc.). This certificate can be issued by the manufacturer itself, or by the FFVE (French Federation of Antique Vehicles), in the amount of €60. It will prove that it will prove that the vehicle”complies with the provisions of article R. 311-1 6.3 of the Highway Code and can be registered using a collection vehicle“. The deadlines are 6 to 7 weeks to get it.

2/ No more concept of hidden defect

Spending your used car registration: what are the advantages and disadvantages?

When buying a vehicle with a collection registration document, there is no longer any way to turn against the seller for a hidden defect. Therefore, it is necessary to be particularly vigilant in case of acquisition.

3/ The vehicle must remain strictly original

Under CIC, no major modifications are possible to the car. Of course, we can make an electrical circuit more reliable or install air conditioning, if it is offered as an option at the time, for example. But impossible to modernize the brakes by changing from drums to discs, or to “pump” the car. She would lose her status.

4/ Prohibition of professional use of the car

It is no longer possible to rent your old one if you have the gray collection card.
It is no longer possible to rent your old one if you have the gray collection card.

When moving to the gray card charge, the car automatically loses the possibility of commercial service. Can only be used for personal use. It is no longer possible to rent it for a wedding, for example, or film in a period film. It is also no longer possible to turn a van into a food truck. Even home/work travel is, in principle, prohibited, a tolerance that may be appropriate for some insurers.

5/ No turning back

The transition to CIC is “considered” final. In fact, although theoretically it is possible to return to a normal gray card, through an isolated reception by the DREALs (regional directorates for the environment, planning and housing, ex-DRIRE), they systematically refuse requests for vehicles over 30 years old! CQFD. Therefore, it is necessary to think carefully, especially if a commercial use of the vehicle is envisaged.


We can see that today, and unless you want to make commercial use of your old card, the disadvantages of the gray charge card are minor compared to the advantages. Only the impossibility of turning against the seller for hidden defect can make you think.

But when you see the lifting of traffic restrictions, less restrictive technical control, the ability to have your car repaired no matter what, reduced insurance rates, objectively there’s not much to hesitate.

A question in the second-hand sector? Do not hesitate to send us an email to: question.occasion@caradisiac.com. It can be selected to appear in this new section.

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