DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

49 CFR Part 571

[Docket No. NHTSA 2000-8572]

RIN 2127-AI33


Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards;
Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems; Controls and Displays

 

PDF Version (size:1,020KB)

    AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

    ACTION: Final Rule.

    SUMMARY: In response to a mandate in the Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability, and Documentation (TREAD) Act of 2000, this agency is issuing a two-part final rule.

    The first part is contained in this document. It establishes a new Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard that requires the installation of tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMSs) that warn the driver when a tire is significantly under-inflated. The standard applies to passenger cars, trucks, multipurpose passenger vehicles, and buses with a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 pounds or less, except those vehicles with dual wheels on an axle.

    This document establishes two compliance options for the short-term, for the period between November 1, 2003, and October 31, 2006. Under the first compliance option, a vehicle''s TPMS must warn the driver when the pressure in any single tire or in each tire in any combination of tires, up to a total of four tires, has fallen to 25 percent or more below the vehicle manufacturer''s recommended cold inflation pressure for the tires, or a minimum level of pressure specified in the standard, whichever pressure is higher. Under the second compliance option, a vehicle''s TPMS must warn the driver when the pressure in any single tire has fallen to 30 percent or more below the vehicle manufacturer''s recommended cold inflation pressure for the tires, or a minimum level of pressure specified in the standard, whichever pressure is higher. Compliance with the options would be phased in during that period by increasing percentages of production.

    The second part of this final rule will be issued by March 1, 2005, and will establish performance requirements for the long-term, i.e., for the period beginning on November 1, 2006. In the meantime, the agency will leave the rulemaking docket open for the submission of new data and analyses concerning the performance of TPMSs. The agency also will conduct a study comparing the tire pressures of vehicles without any TPMS to the pressures of vehicles with TPMSs, especially TPMSs that do not comply with the four-tire, 25 percent compliance option.

    Based on the record now before the agency, NHTSA tentatively believes that the four-tire, 25 percent option would best meet the mandate in the TREAD Act. However, it is possible that the agency may obtain or receive new information that is sufficient to justify a continuation of the options established by this first part of this rule, or the adoption of some other alternative.

    DATES: This final rule is effective [insert date that is 30 days after publication in the Federal Register]. Under the rule, vehicles will be required to comply with the requirements of the standard according to a phase-in beginning on November 1, 2003. If you wish to submit a petition for reconsideration of this rule, your petition must be received by [insert date that is 45 days after the date of publication in the Federal Register].

    ADDRESSES: Petitions for reconsideration should refer to the docket number and be submitted to: Administrator, Room 5220, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, SW, Washington, D.C. 20590.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical and other non-legal issues, you may call Mr. George Soodoo or Mr. Joseph Scott, Office of Crash Avoidance Standards (Telephone: 202-366-2720) (Fax: 202-366-4329).

    For legal issues, you may call Mr. Dion Casey, Office of Chief Counsel (Telephone: 202-366-2992) (Fax: 202-366-3820).

    You may send mail to these officials at National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 400 Seventh Street, SW, Washington, D.C. 20590.

    You may call Docket Management at 202-366-9324. You may visit the Docket on the plaza level at 400 Seventh Street, SW, Washington, D.C., from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:



Table of Contents

I.Executive Summary
 A.Highlights of the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking
 B.Highlights of the Preliminary Determination About the Final Rule
 C.OMB Return Letter
 D.Highlights of the Final Rule
  1.Part One -- Phase-in (November 2003 through October 2006)
  2.Part Two -- November 2006 and Thereafter
 E.Summary Comparison of Preliminary Determination and the Final Rule
II.Background
 A.The Transportation Recall Enhancement, Accountability, and Documentation Act
 B.Previous Rulemaking on Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems
 C.Summary of the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking
 D.Summary of Public Comments on Notice
  1.Vehicles Covered
  2.Phase-in Options and Long-Term Requirements
   a.Definition of ""Significantly Under-Inflated""
   b.Number of Tires Monitored
  3.Lead Time
  4.Reliability
  5.Costs and Benefits Estimates
 E.Submission of Draft Final Rule to OMB
 F.OMB Return Letter
 G.Public Comments on OMB''s Return Letter
 H.Congressional Hearing
III.Safety Problem
 A.Infrequent Driver Monitoring of Tire Pressure
 B.Loss of Tire Pressure Due to Natural and Other Causes
 C.Percentage of Motor Vehicles with Under-Inflated Tires
 D.Consequences of Under-Inflation of Tires
  1.Reduced Vehicle Safety -- Tire Failures and Increases in Stopping Distance
  2.Reduced Tread Life
  3.Reduced Fuel Economy
IV.Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems
 A.Indirect TPMSs
 B.Direct TPMSs
 C.Hybrid TPMSs
V.Summary of Preliminary Determination About the Final Rule
 A.Alternative Long-Term Requirements Analyzed in Making Preliminary Determination
 B.Phase-In and Long-Term Requirements
VI.Response to Issues Raised in OMB Return Letter About Preliminary Determination
 A.Criteria for Selecting the Long-Term Requirement
  1.Tire Safety and Overall Vehicle Safety
  2.Statutory Mandate
 B.Relative Ability of Direct and Current Indirect TPMSs to Detect Under-Inflation
 C.Analysis of a Fourth Alternative Long-Term Requirement: One-Tire, 30 Percent Under-Inflation Detection
 D.Impact of One-Tire, 30 Percent Alternative on Installation Rate of ABS
 E.Overall Safety Effects of ABS
 F.Technical Foundation for NHTSA''s Safety Benefit Analyses
VII.The Final Rule
 A.Decision to Issue Two-Part Final Rule
 B.Part One of the Final Rule -- November 2003 through October 2006
  1.Summary
  2.Congressional Intent
  3.Vehicles Covered
  4.Phase-In Options and Requirements
   a.Alternatives Considered
    i.Threshold Level of Under-Inflation
    ii.Number of Tires Monitored
   b.Option One: Four Tires, 25 Percent Under-Inflation
   c.Option Two: One Tire, 30 Percent Under-Inflation
   d.Special Written Instructions for Option Two TPMSs
  5.Other Requirements
   a.Time Frame for Telltale Illumination
   b.Duration of Warning
   c.Temporary Disablement
   d.System Calibration
   e.Replacement Tires
   f.Monitoring of Spare Tire
   g.Temperature Compensation
   h.Low Tire Pressure Warning Telltale
    i.Color
    ii.Symbol
    iii.Self-Check
   i..General Written Instructions for All TPMSs
   j.Test Conditions
   k.Test Procedures
  6.Lead Time
 C.Study of Effects of TPMSs That Do Not Meet a Four-Tire, 25 Percent Under-Inflation Requirement
  1.Effect on Tire Pressure
  2.Effect on Number of Significantly Under-Inflated Tires
 D.Part Two of the Final Rule -- November 2006 and Thereafter
VIII.Benefits
 A.Tire Safety Benefits
  1.Skidding/Loss of Control
  2.Stopping Distance
  3.Flat Tires and Blowouts
  4.Unquantified Benefits
 B.Non-Tire Safety Benefits
 C.Total Quantified Safety Benefits
 D.Economic Benefits
  1.Fuel Economy
  2.Tread Life
IX.Costs
 A.Indirect TPMSs
 B.Direct TPMSs
 C.Hybrid TPMSs
 D.Vehicle Cost
 E.Maintenance Costs
 F.Testing Costs
 G.Unquantified Costs
 H.ABS Costs
 I.Net Costs and Costs Per Equivalent Life Saved
X.Rulemaking Analyses and Notices
 A.Executive Order 12866 and DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures
 B.Regulatory Flexibility Act
 C.National Environmental Policy Act
 D.Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)
 E.Civil Justice Reform
 F.Paperwork Reduction Act
 G.National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act
 H.Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
 I.Regulation Identifier Number (RIN)