The U.S. federal National Highway Traffic Safety administration (NHTSA)has issued a final rule that requires all passenger cars weighing 10,000 pounds or less to have tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) by model year (MY) 2008. Vehicle manufacturers will be required to install a system that can detect when one or more of the vehicle’s tires are 25% or more below the recommended inflation pressure. The new safety standard, Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 138, will be phased in starting on September 1, 2005. Twenty percent of MY 2006 cars will be required to comply with the rule, increasing to 70% of MY 2007 cars, followed by 100% of all MY 2008 cars. While the rule is technology neutral, NHTSA estimates that the new systems will cost between $48 and $70 per vehicle using systems currently in the marketplace. This is the second time NHTSA has issued the rule. A federal court struck down the first rule that gave automakers the option of installing indirect sensors since they could not independently monitor each tire. Canadian Ministry of Transportation regulations generally follow U.S. federal motor vehicle safety standards to create a common North American vehicle technical standards.
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