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Notice

Final Decision That Certain Nonconforming Vehicles Are Eligible for Importation

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, DOT.

ACTION:

Final decision that certain nonconforming vehicles are eligible for importation.

SUMMARY:

This document announces a final decision by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that certain vehicles that do not comply with all applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards, but that are certified by their original manufacturer as complying with all applicable Canadian motor vehicle safety standards, are eligible for importation into the United States. The vehicles in question either (1) are substantially similar to vehicles that were certified by their manufacturers as complying with the U.S. safety standards and are capable of being readily altered to conform to those standards, or (2) have safety features that comply with, or are capable of being altered to comply with, all U.S. safety standards.

DATE:

This decision is effective on September 19, 2002.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Luke Loy, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance, NHTSA (202-366-5308).

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

Under 49 U.S.C. 30141(a)(1)(A), a motor vehicle that was not originally manufactured to conform to all applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards (FMVSS) shall be refused admission into the United States unless NHTSA has decided, either pursuant to a petition from the manufacturer or registered importer or on its own initiative, that the motor vehicle (1) is substantially similar to a motor vehicle of the same model year that was originally manufactured for importation into and sale in the United States and certified by its manufacturer as complying with all applicable FMVSS, and (2) is capable of being readily altered to conform to all applicable FMVSS. Where there is no substantially similar U.S.-certified motor vehicle, 49 U.S.C. 30141(a)(1)(B) permits a nonconforming motor vehicle to be admitted into the United States if its safety features comply with, or are capable of being altered to comply with, all applicable FMVSS based on destructive test data or such other evidence as NHTSA decides to be adequate.

On August 6, 2002, NHTSA published a notice in the Federal Register at 67 FR 50979 announcing that it had made a tentative decision that certain motor vehicles that do not comply with all applicable FMVSS, but that are certified by their original manufacturers as complying with all applicable Canadian motor vehicle safety standards, are eligible for importation into the United States. The notice identified these vehicles as:

(a) All passenger cars manufactured on or after September 1, 2002 and before September 1, 2007, that, as originally manufactured, are equipped with an automatic restraint system that complies FMVSS No. 208, and that comply with FMVSS No. 201, 214, 225, and 401; and

(b) All multipurpose passenger vehicles, trucks and buses with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 4,535 kg (10,000 lb) or less that were manufactured on or after September 1, 2002, and before September 1, 2007, and that, as originally manufactured, comply with FMVSS Nos. 201, 202, 208, 214, and 216, and, insofar as it is applicable, with FMVSS No. 225.

The reader is referred to the August 6 notice for a full discussion of the factors leading to the tentative decision. In accordance with 49 U.S.C. 30141(b), the notice solicited public comments on the tentative decision. No comments were submitted in response to the notice. Accordingly, we are adopting the tentative decision as a final decision.

Final Decision

In consideration of the foregoing, the Administrator of NHTSA hereby decides that:

(a) All passenger cars manufactured on or after September 1, 2002 and before September 1, 2007, that, as originally manufactured, are equipped with an automatic restraint system that complies with FMVSS No. 208, and that comply with FMVSS No. 201, 214, 225, and 401; and (b) All multipurpose passenger vehicles, trucks and buses with a GVWR of 4,535 kg (10,000 lb) or less that were manufactured on or after September 1, 2002, and before September 1, 2007, and that, as originally manufactured, comply with FMVSS Nos. 201, 202, 208, 214, and 216, and, insofar as it is applicable, with FMVSS No. 225;

that are certified by their original manufacturer as complying with all applicable Canadian motor vehicle safety standards, are eligible for importation into the United States on the basis that either:

1. they are substantially similar to vehicles of the same make, model, and model year originally manufactured for importation into and sale in the United States, or originally manufactured in the United States for sale therein, and certified as complying with all applicable FMVSS, and are capable of being readily altered to conform to all applicable FMVSS, or

2. they have safety features that comply with, or are capable of being altered to comply with, all applicable FMVSS.

Vehicle Eligibility Number

The importer of a vehicle admissible under any final decision must indicate on the form HS-7 accompanying entry the appropriate vehicle eligibility number indicating that the vehicle is eligible for entry. All passenger cars admissible under this decision are eligible for entry under vehicle eligibility number VSA-80, and all MPVs, trucks, and buses admissible under this decision are eligible for entry under vehicle eligibility number VSA-81.

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Authority: 49 U.S.C. 30141(a)(1)(A), (a)(1)(B), and (b)(1); 49 CFR 593.8; delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50.

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Issued on: September 13, 2002.

Annette M. Sandberg,

Deputy Administrator.

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[FR Doc. 02-23756 Filed 9-18-02; 8:45 am]

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