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Trump administration puts the brakes on connected vehicle requirements

Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 09:00
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A proposed mandate for wireless vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication technology that was originally drafted under the Obama administration may be dead in the water.

In 2016, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a notice of proposed rulemaking that would have made V2V communication mandatory in vehicles after 2020.

Now, the Trump administration appears to be planning to withdraw the mandate according to an Associated Press report that cites auto industry sources and the Department of Transportation (DOT).

“They are removing the mandatory part of the language,” says Mike Ramsey, analyst at Gartner. “If companies aren’t required to do this, it changes the paradigm and the introduction schedule.”

V2V and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technologies are seen as an important enabler of both connected and autonomous vehicle initiatives.

“We have guidelines on connected and autonomous vehicles, but we don’t know if that is going to turn into regulation or sit with no action,” says Bob Redding, Washington representative for the Automotive Service Association (ASA).

The DOT did issue a statement on the V2V mandate, indicating that the proposed rule and related comments were still being reviewed.

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According to a DOT statement: “The Department of Transportation and NHTSA have not made any final decision on the proposed rulemaking concerning a V2V mandate. Any reports to the contrary are mistaken. In all events, DOT hopes to use the dedicated spectrum for transportation lifesaving technologies. Safety is the department’s number one priority.”

However, most sources believe that the administration’s general opposition to regulation make it unlikely that any new mandates will be forthcoming. In addition, NHTSA still doesn’t have a director, which means new agency initiatives are also unlikely.

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