840 SE Summit Drive
Roseburg, OR 97470
Dear Mr. Welch:
This responds to your request for an interpretation whether the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) specify "the type of odometer" placed in a motor vehicle. As explained below, the FMVSS do not so specify. If an odometer is provided, its mileage may be stated in kilometers.
Standard No. 101, Controls and displays, specifies requirements for the location, identification, and illumination of motor vehicle controls and displays. Neither Standard No. 101 nor any other FMVSS specifies that an odometer be placed in a motor vehicle or that it register distance in miles, rather than kilometers. However, S5.3.1 (referencing Table 2 "Identification and Illumination of Displays") of Standard No. 101, specifies that if an odometer is provided and the odometer measures mileage in kilometers, the mileage must be stated as "KILOMETERS" or "km."
I hope this information is helpful. If you have any further questions, please contact Dorothy Nakama of my staff at (202) 366-2992.
Philip R. Recht Chief Counsel ref:101 d:4/10/95