VIN Decoder

Each manufacturer of a replica motor vehicle shall affix to each vehicle a label, of the type and in the manner described below, containing the statements specified in paragraph of this section. The first preemption issue is implicated by 49 U.S.C. 30114, which provides protection to the original manufacturer, its successor or assignee, or current owner, who grants a license or otherwise transfers rights to a low-volume manufacturer to produce replicas of vehicles. The Act states that such persons shall incur no liability to any person or entity under Federal or State statute, regulation, local ordinance, or under any Federal or State common law for such license or assignment to a low-volume manufacturer.

An update to a registration to add a manufacturer under common ownership shall allocate the exemption for 325 replica vehicles between the manufacturers. An update to the registration to adjust the allocation must be made pursuant to § 586.9. NHTSA received five comments related to the second preemption issue—its interpretation of the FAST Act provision.

Consumers will be able to instantly determine whether action is required to address an uncompleted safety recall that affects their personal vehicle, as identified by their unique VIN. While several automakers already offer this feature, those who do not, will have until next year (8/14/14) to comply with the final rule. When you receive a notification, follow any interim safety guidance provided by the manufacturer and contact your local dealership. Whether you receive a recall notification or are subject to a safety improvement campaign, it is very important that you visit your dealer to have the vehicle serviced. If a dealer refuses to repair your vehicle in accordance with the recall letter, you should notify the manufacturer immediately.

Replica motor vehiclemeans a motor vehicle meeting the definition of replica motor vehicle in 49 CFR part 586. NHTSA sought comment on whether information warning prospective purchasers about the replica vehicles’ nonconformance with applicable standards should be provided in advertisements and other marketing materials for the vehicles. Morgan stated this would be unnecessary since such warnings would be seen at the point of sale when the vehicle is viewed. The agency hopes that the tool will help cut down on the number of cars that are recalled but never repaired. It will also help the agency track the completeness of recalls, as manufacturers will log which cars get repaired and regularly update the system. That way, second-hand owners, leasers of pre-owned vehicles and others will know whether a vehicle has undergone necessary repairs linked to past recalls.

As an alternative, ElectroMeccanic and an individual suggested a simpler label that directed the reader elsewhere for more information, such as to the owner’s manual, the manufacturer’s website, or a location like the underside of the vehicle hood. Morgan Motor Company , VSCI and SEMA suggested an option of an alternative statement indicating that the vehicle is exempt from all FMVSS except those specifically identified by the manufacturer. The FAST Act provides that a replica vehicle is one “intended to resemble the body” of another motor vehicle that was manufactured at least 25 years before the replica. NHTSA proposed requirements to give objective meaning to “intended to resemble.” NHTSA explained in the NPRM that the agency would interpret the term “resemble” as requiring the same height, width, and length of the original motor vehicle. The NPRM did not specify that the replica vehicle must incorporate the original motor vehicle’s logos and emblems to “resemble” the underlying vehicle.

The NPRM also defined “body” as including any part of the vehicle that is not part of the chassis or frame. Some potential replica manufacturers suggested a vehicle’s body should be limited to the body’s exterior design and appearance. The commenters did not support NHTSA’s requiring a replica motor vehicle to include the make/model or badging on the vehicle. Commenters stated that this could create confusion between the replica vehicle and the original vehicle.

SEMA compared potential purchasers to kit car owners— i.e.,as SEMA described them, car enthusiasts who know what they are purchasing. SEMA also claimed that new car purchasers rely on the agency’s New Car Assessment Program website to understand the value of the FMVSS. If a registration were deemed approved but had not met part 586 requirements originally, the NPRM proposed a means by which NHTSA could request additional information from the “deemed approved” manufacturer to rectify the registration. NHTSA proposed that, when notified of the submission’s shortcomings, the manufacturer would have 60 days to submit information to correct and/or complete the registration. NHTSA proposed procedures to provide for registrants submitting an incomplete application. Rather than denying the incomplete application immediately and outright, the proposed procedures would permit NHTSA to inform the manufacturer that the registration is incomplete via email.

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