France’s top court has cleared the way for the sale of new Mercedes-Benz autos equipped with a banned air-conditioning fluid. The decision overturns a June ruling by the country’s environment minister blocking the sale of about 4,600 Mercedes-Benz cars with the refrigerant hydrofluorocarbon (HFC)-134a because they did not meet a European Union law requiring use of alternatives with lower global-warming potential in new model cars. But France’s Conseil d’État said the number of cars involved poses little harm to the environment and promised to soon decide the fate of HFC-134a-equipped cars in France. Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz, maintains that the only viable alternative at this point, hydrofluoroolefin (HFO)-1234yf, poses an unacceptable fire hazard. Honeywell International and DuPont, which make HFO-1234yf, say the new refrigerant is safe and expect European officials to enforce the phaseout of HFC-134a. Carmakers such as General Motors are using the new refrigerant in Europe, but now Toyota says it will stop selling cars with HFO-1234yf in response to customers’ safety concerns.