RHD (less than 25yrs old) can now be considered under petition - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 15th, 2010, 01:01 PM
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RHD (less than 25yrs old) can now be considered under petition

REGISTERED IMPORTER NEWSLETTER No. 40
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance
December 1, 2010
IMPORT ELIGIBILITY PETITIONS FOR RIGHT-HAND DRIVE (RHD) VEHICLES

An RI can petition NHTSA under 49 CFR 593.6(a) to decide that a nonconforming vehicle is eligible for importation if the vehicle is substantially similar to a vehicle of the same model and model year that was certified by its manufacturer as complying with all applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards (FMVSS). If there is no substantially similar U.S.-certified vehicle, the RI must petition the agency under 49 CFR 593.6(b) and support its petition with dynamic crash test data to demonstrate that the vehicle is capable of being modified to the FMVSS for which such testing is prescribed. This is to notify you that NHTSA will no longer accept petitions filed under 49 CFR 593.6(a) for RHD versions of vehicles for which no U.S.-certified RHD model was produced. The agency does not consider these vehicles to be substantially similar to U.S. certified left-hand drive (LHD) versions. Import eligibility petitions for these vehicles must therefore be filed under 49 CFR 593.6(b) and include dynamic crash test and crash avoidance data to demonstrate compliance. The reasons for this decision are set forth below.
In our administration of the vehicle import and certification program, we have gained the understanding that only manufacturers who chose to certify an RHD version of a vehicle to all applicable FMVSS will possess the necessary incentive to conduct due care evaluations to establish the conformity of the RHD version to those standards. Very few RHD vehicle models have been certified by their manufacturer for sale in the United States during the past 25 years. When NHTSA has asked manufacturers whether crash test results for the left-hand drive (LHD) version of a specific vehicle could be extrapolated to apply to a non-U.S. certified RHD version of the same vehicle, the manufacturers have consistently informed us that they have no data to support this position because the RHD version was not intended for sale in the United States.
NHTSA has also been informed by at least one manufacturer that designing a vehicle platform for both LHD and RHD markets requires crash testing of each version separately in order to meet differing occupant protection standards. This is attributable in part to the fact that the orientation of the engine/drive train and auxiliary components in relation to the driverís seating position in an RHD vehicle is not a mirror image of that in the same model produced in an LHD configuration. The unique requirements of U.S. and other market occupant crash protection systems, including air bags, seat belt tensioners, occupant protection system control systems (including control logic), interior materials, chassis structural components, and assembly methods all effect crashworthiness and militate against the development of a single platform for both LHD and RHD markets.
We are also aware that RHD vehicles intended for markets other than the United States and manufactured on the same production line as similar LHD vehicles do not necessarily have the same features required to meet all applicable FMVSS, since those standards would not apply, or would differ from those that do apply, in the market for which the RHD model is produced. For example, unbelted occupant, side impact, and upper interior occupant protection requirements do not exist in many foreign markets or cannot be compared to US requirements. In addition, vehicle assembly tooling, component attachment points, methods of assembly and mechanical fastening may be different between LHD and RHD vehicles even when those vehicles are produced on the same assembly line.
If you have any questions, please contact George Stevens at 202-366-5308.
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  #2  
Old December 15th, 2010, 01:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 130Tdi View Post
This is to notify you that NHTSA will no longer accept petitions filed under 49 CFR 593.6(a) for RHD versions of vehicles for which no U.S.-certified RHD model was produced.
Did I understood this wrong...
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  #3  
Old December 15th, 2010, 01:47 PM
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it does seem to indicate that a conversion to LHD would make it ok. but, we'll see...
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Old December 15th, 2010, 02:47 PM
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damn, that does not sound good for importing.
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  #5  
Old December 15th, 2010, 03:49 PM
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Wow!

Boy I totally miss read that!
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Old December 15th, 2010, 04:22 PM
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Why does this change anything in the LR community?

For RI's they have always had to start with a LHD vehicle (factory build). So if you are going to import and certify a 1993 110 it can't be RHD, that was always the case. Even the RI could not convert the truck. If they can now petition for to do a RHD model, it still doesn't cross all the other hurdles that make getting a 110 (LHD or RHD) federalized a huge pain in the ass and basically not worth it.
Doesn't code 49 only apply to the newer trucks/ cars that RIs are bringing into compliance?

I could have missed something, but don't see this applying to 25 year exempt vehicles.

You can still import 25 year old RHD stuff if you like.
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Old December 15th, 2010, 04:22 PM
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it says less than 25 years. What bearing does this have on anything older? None right?
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Old December 15th, 2010, 04:42 PM
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I think I am now confused, not that its hard to do that
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Old December 15th, 2010, 05:08 PM
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I think I am now confused, not that its hard to do that
That makes 2 of us
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Old December 15th, 2010, 05:30 PM
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Do I read this as it's legal to import a RHD 93 110 or 94-97 D90 since there was a comparable legal LHD version in the US?
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  #11  
Old December 15th, 2010, 05:39 PM
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Its business as usual:

This is to notify you that NHTSA will no longer accept petitions filed under 49 CFR 593.6(a) for RHD versions of vehicles for which no U.S.-certified RHD model was produced.

The first part where it says they will is just them stating the current rule (as in you used to be able to petition that a RHD was close to a LHD). Then they state the change (as listed above).

What I read it as is that you can no longer Federalize a RHD Defender, nor can you petition that a RHD is so close to a LHD that it doesn't matter. You couldn't do that anyway (even prior to this) as the regs for Defenders already said the vehicle had to be factory LHD and could not be a converted RHD.

It was likely different for Mercedes and other makes, and they squashing that. So it may impact some RIs who Federalize those other makes, but for LRs...nothing new.

Doug, what did you read this as?????
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  #12  
Old December 15th, 2010, 05:48 PM
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I read it as more Detroit protectionism. I think that there are far more Japanese home market candidates than any Brit junk. That's what is scaring the distinguished gentlepersons from Michigan.
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  #13  
Old December 15th, 2010, 07:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ECR View Post

Doug, what did you read this as?????

LOL. Glad to see everyone elses head is spinning as well.

I read it to say that the previous petitioning mechanism is now dead. Any new petitions must have crash data included- something only a manufacturer could afford to provide-if they offered a rhd version for the US market. As we already know only a very limited bandwith of 93-97 trucks that were built as left hand drives with fuel injected V8's can be considered for import. I know of 1 1993 110 that has entered and been granted this unique honor. It belongs to a board member here and is actually a 300tdi Camel Trophy support truck. To get it entered the owner (through a former US CT contestant with factory ties) got Solihull to write the DOT/USHTSA a letter stating that the truck was actually built to a "higher specification" than its NAS 110's. Don't think anyone else is going to be able to pull that rabbit out of their hat.
I don't see this as having any impact for defenders.


To summarize, If its not already here its got to be 25yrs old-business as usual.
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