From 1985 up to now quite a few changes have been applied to the design of the vignettes. Not only in the colour combination, but also in the field of security adjustments have been made in order to prevent especiallly reuse and fraud of the vignette. In this part of the site I will get to the core of this.
The first Swiss Autobahnvignet.
The first adjustments in 1995 followed by further changes in 1996 and 1999.
1995 – Because of a bad adhesive this year, a vignette with an extra coating.
This year the vignette had a bad adhesive and came off. The Oberzolldirektion in Bern looked for solutions and finally had a cover made which had to be glued over the original vignette. The design was a transparant layer, in the middle in a separate frame work the year 95, printed in the same colour as the original vignette. The size of the cover was larger than the original vignette. The frame work in the middle covers precisely the vignette and the remaining part was fixed to the vehicle.
1996 – Changes in the colour combination of the year;
Up to 1996 the colours of the year were identical on the front and the back of the vignette. This changed in 1996. From that year up to now the colour of the year is always white. Each year the colour differs at the front. By this colour adjustment of the year when checking it had to be clear straight away whether the vignette was applied correctly. White, visible from the outside on the windscreen, meant by definition that the vignette was not applied to the windscreen as required.
1999 – Adding a watermark
In 1999 a watermark was added to the vignette to prevent fraud. The watermark is the year of the vignette and visible on the back. The design includes a pattern of years spread over the vignette with a special detail that one year is turnedd round. That year is in 1999 on the right side of the vignette in sixth position.
The adjustments from 2000 to 2005
2000 – the year in full
In 2000 we find, contradictory tot the previous years, that the year on the vignette is completely visible No -00- but 2000 -99- instead of 1999. By this adjustment the watermark goes up to the top of the year and not down. Also here a year in the watermark is turned round visible. To make sure that the year on the back is clearly visible a light grey was selected instead of white.
2001 – A different X-screen pattern.
There are changes in the screen pattern of the vignette. The X-screen has on both sides of the X an angular pattern. In 2001 this angular pattern was replaced by curves. Since 1985 there has been an X-shaped screen through the vignette. This screen makes sure that when removing the vignette from the windscreen it will come off in pieces. This will prevent reuse.
2002 – X-screen pattern changed again and different background.
The pattern on the background of the vignette has changed. Till 2002 this was a kind of a fan out beginning similar to small ovals which change into egg-shaped curves, diagonally waving through the vignette from bottom to top. These small ovals became larger during the waving and transformed into curves. From 2002 a totally different pattern is visible. The small ovals are replaced by egg-shaped curves which become larger during the fan and change into small ovals. The small ovals are connected by squares.
2003 – Adjustment in the watermark
From 1999 to 2003 there was one year upside down visible in the watermark. In 2003 there are two, one up left and one right under.
2004 – Colour adjustment
Till 2004 the vignette had a flat colour. In 2004 this became metallic.
The adjustments of 2005 to 2009
2005 – The “Jubilee Vignette” and the paint is crumbling off.
This year is a Jubilee year for the Swiss Autobahnvignet; the twentieth anniversary of the vignette. A year in which the Oberzolldirektion – in particular Mr. B. Rohner – wanted to celebrate esspecially by the issue of a special vignette. The jubilee-vignette has a new design at the front. The pattern at the back has been replaced by black outlined crosses and the turned round years in the watermark have got a different position. A shortcoming in the vignette is the crumbling off the colour after one year. When this came to light there were tests to be aware to apply this paint in the following years as well. This would have made the reuse difficult or even impossible . However, this was never implemented and in 2006 the ordinairy paint was used again. An article is devoted to the coming about of this Jubilee-vignette as shown in the menu “Images.”
2006 – Different background and security.
After the previous background in the Jubilee-vignette, small ovals and curves had to make room for the crosses , a completely new design of the background was chosen for the front in 2006. This design no longer shows subtle curves but clearly fully black curves, which go from small to large from the inside to the outside. If being removed these full curves must have the quality to come off and leave a tranparency on that spot. So reuse will become more difficult.
2007 – Colour combination background, watermark and serial number.
In 2006 the background was changed into fully black curves. From 2007 the curves received a derivative colour of the vignette colour. In 2007 it was a blue tint, not quite derived from the colour of the vignette. The serial number of the vignette – up to 2007 printed sparsely in black, is now printed in bold. The watermark with more years on the back are now composed of a single year and the combination of two of the same years together. The combination appears six times and the single year eight times. Till 2007 there was a single year turned round, in 2007 there is also a year visible of which the numbers are inverted in the combination. For instance a single year 07, in the combination 0707 and turned round 7007, of which the first 7 is reflected.
2008 – Colour and background serial number.
In 2007 the small curves at the front received a derivative colour of the vignette. That was the intention,however, in 2007 not clearly visible. In 2008 this became clearer. The colour is now totally derived from the colour of the vignette. The background of the serial number was white till 2008. In 2008 the background became transparant. Now the serial number is also visible on the windscreen, though reflected.
The adjustments of 2009 up to now.
2009 – Screen pattern from X to Round.
In 2009 the X-screen pattern disappeared. In order to prevent reuse another screen was placed. The now round screen consists of 3 circles and a round in the middle. The circles are only connected occasionally with one another and with the vignette. If removed from the windscreen, the vignette will easily fall apart. The X-screenr had in-between a more solid connection and therefore it became more difficult to fall apart.
2013 – Watermark from large to small.
The watermark is in smaller print than previous years.
2014 – Colour from metallic to flat and the curves.
In 2004 the metallic colour was introduced. In 2014 the metallic colour was replaced by flat. The curves, which received a derived colour of the vignette colour in 2007, are now light grey. There is no link anymore to the colour of the vignette.
2015 – Colour from flat to metallic, the watermark large again and the curves.
With a digress in 2014, where the metallic colour became flat and the curves a different colour, everything is back to normal like in 2009. Metallic is back for the vignette and the colour of the curves are derived from the colour of the vignette. Also the watermark is printed in large again.