Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC, Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance, 25118-25119 [2019-11212]

Download as PDF 25118 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 104 / Thursday, May 30, 2019 / Notices loading information labels that do not provide the cold tire pressure or original size information for the spare tire, and instead, incorrectly indicated that there is no spare tire. The agency agrees with GM that the subject noncompliance is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. Even though the subject vehicles have erroneously marked tire placard labels, the subject vehicles are equipped with the appropriate matched spare tire and rim combination, and that when properly mounted on the subject vehicles, would allow the vehicles to be operated safely within the manufacturer’s specified performance and loading limits. The agency agrees with GM, that should a customer question whether the vehicle comes equipped with a spare tire or what the cold tire pressure is for the spare tire, most customers would consult the Owner’s Manual, which would direct the customer to the spare tire location as well as provide the recommended tire pressure. Should the Owner’s Manual be unavailable, the customer would be able to lift the liftgate and see that there is a spare tire or contact any authorized dealer or tire replacement facility for assistance. jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with NOTICES VII. NHTSA’s Decision In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA finds that GM has met its burden of persuasion that the FMVSS No. 110 noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. Accordingly, GM’s petition is hereby granted and GM is exempted from the obligation of providing notification of, and a remedy for, the noncompliance under 49 U.S.C. 30118 and 30120. NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, this decision only applies to the subject vehicles that GM no longer controlled at the time it determined that the noncompliance existed. However, the granting of this petition does not relieve vehicle distributors and dealers of the prohibitions on the sale, offer for sale, or introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce of the noncompliant vehicles under their control after GM notified them that the subject noncompliance existed. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:08 May 29, 2019 Jkt 247001 Authority: (49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: delegations of authority at 49 CFR 1.95 and 501.8) Otto G. Matheke III, Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance. [FR Doc. 2019–11208 Filed 5–29–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–59–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [Docket No. NHTSA–2016–0143; Notice 2] Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC, Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Grant of petition. AGENCY: Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC (MBUSA) on behalf of itself and its parent company Daimler AG (DAG), has determined that certain model year (MY) 2016–2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE and GLS-Class motor vehicles do not fully comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 110, Tire Selection and Rims and Motor Home/Recreation Vehicle Trailer Load Carrying Capacity Information for Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) or Less. MBUSA filed a noncompliance information report dated December 12, 2016, and subsequently petitioned NHTSA on December 22, 2016, for a decision that the subject noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. This document announces the grant of MBUSA’s petition. SUMMARY: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kerrin Bressant, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance, NHTSA, telephone (202) 366–1110, facsimile (202) 366–5930. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Overview: MBUSA has determined that certain MY 2016–2017 MercedesBenz GLE and GLS-Class motor vehicles do not fully comply with paragraph S4.3 of FMVSS No. 110, Tire Selection and Rims and Motor Home/Recreation Vehicle Trailer Load Carrying Capacity Information for Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) or Less (49 CFR 571.110). MBUSA filed a noncompliance information report dated December 12, 2016, pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility and Reports. MBUSA subsequently petitioned NHTSA on December 22, 2016, pursuant to 49 PO 00000 Frm 00091 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) and 49 CFR part 556, Exemption for Inconsequential Defect or Noncompliance, for an exemption from the notification and remedy requirements of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the basis that this noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. Notice of receipt of MBUSA’s petition was published, with a 30-day public comment period on April 11, 2017, in the Federal Register (82 FR 17515). No comments were received. To view the petition and all supporting documents, log onto the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) web page at: http://www.regulations.gov/ and follow the online search instruction to locate docket number ‘‘NHTSA–2016– 0143.’’ II. Vehicles Involved: Approximately 142 of the following Mercedes-Benz GLE and GLS-Class motor vehicles manufactured on June 14 and June 15, 2016, are potentially involved: • 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE300d 4Matic • 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE350 • 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE350 4Matic • 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE400 4Matic • 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE550e 4Matic • 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE63S AMG 4Matic • 2017 Mercedes-Benz GL450 4Matic • 2017 Mercedes-Benz GL550 4Matic III. Noncompliance: MBUSA explains that the noncompliance is that the tire information placard affixed to the driver’s side B-pillar on the subject vehicles was improperly printed and therefore does not meet the requirements of paragraph S4.3 of FMVSS No. 110. Specifically, the column identifying whether the tire is front, rear, or spare might not be completely legible. IV. Rule Text: Paragraph S4.3 of FMVSS No. 110 includes the requirements relevant to this petition: • Each vehicle, except for a trailer or incomplete vehicle shall show the information specified in paragraph S4.3 (a) through (g), and may show, at the manufacturer’s option, the information specified in paragraph S4.3 (h) and (i), on a placard permanently affixed to the driver’s side B-pillar. • This information shall be in the English language and conform in color and format, not including the border surrounding the entire placard, as shown in the example set forth in Figure 1 of FMVSS No. 110: (c) Vehicle manufacturer’s recommended cold tire inflation pressure for front, rear and spare tires. (d) Tire size designation, indicated by the headings ‘‘size’’ or ‘‘original tire E:\FR\FM\30MYN1.SGM 30MYN1 jbell on DSK3GLQ082PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 104 / Thursday, May 30, 2019 / Notices size’’ or ‘‘original size’’ and ‘‘spare tire’’ or ‘‘spare,’’ for the tires installed at the time of first purchase for purposes other than resale. V. Summary of MBUSA’s Petition: MBUSA described the subject noncompliance and stated its belief that the noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. In support of its petition, MBUSA submitted the following reasoning: 1. The row names ‘‘front/rear/spare’’ might not be completely legible, but the tire dimensions and pressure values are legible and correct. 2. The data, including the ‘‘front/rear/ spare’’ designations, is also available on the tank flap to the gas tank (also referred to as the ‘‘filler flap’’). 3. After identifying the potentially noncompliant B-pillar tire information placards, DAG analyzed potential technical implications, specifically with respect to the requirements of FMVSS No. 110, and did not identify any technical implications since the label remains substantially legible and the same information is provided elsewhere on the vehicle. 4. MBUSA has received neither customer complaints nor information about any accidents or injuries alleged to have occurred as a result of this noncompliance. 5. DAG has correct labels in production as of June 15, 2016. MBUSA concluded by expressing the belief that the subject noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety, and that its petition to be exempted from providing notification of the noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118, and a remedy for the noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120, should be granted. VI. NHTSA’s Analysis: MBUSA explained that the noncompliance is that the subject vehicles are equipped with an FMVSS No. 110 tire and information vehicle placard which isn’t properly printed. FMVSS No. 110 requires that the vehicle placard identify the installed tire sizes and recommended inflation pressures for each vehicle axle (i.e. front and rear) and the size of the spare tire, if equipped. The axle and spare tire identification labeling on the affected vehicles is not completely legible, however, the given tire dimensions and inflation pressure values on the label are correct. Assuming a worst-case scenario where the axle and spare tire identification information (i.e., front, rear and spare) were totally missing, the vehicle operator could inadvertently be misguided to the incorrect inflation pressure for the tires installed on each VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:08 May 29, 2019 Jkt 247001 axle and the spare tire. The operator could easily identify the tire size by visually looking at the tires fitted to each axle and the spare tire. By comparing the actual tire sizes to the information on the vehicle placard, the spare tire could be easily differentiated from the tires mounted on the axles because of its much smaller size. The same tire size is used on both the front and rear axles. The vehicle placards on the subject vehicles recommend 41–45 psi for the front axle and 44–51 psi for the rear axle, depending on the model type. The concern is that the vehicle placards list two different inflation pressures for the tires mounted on the vehicles, but does not properly identify what pressure is for the front axle and which is for the rear axle. FMVSS No. 110 requires the tires, at the recommended inflation pressures, be appropriate for the vehicle’s gross axle weight ratings (GAWRs). The agency evaluated the affected vehicles against this FMVSS No. 110 requirement and in the unlikely event that the operator ‘‘guessed’’ incorrectly or simply opted to inflate all four tires to the lowest stated pressure, the tires would be appropriate for the vehicle’s GAWRs. Information provided by the ETRTO (European Tire and Rim Technical Organization) validates that at the lower pressures, the tires on the subject vehicles, are adequate to handle maximum vehicle loads. In further communications regarding this petition, MBUSA mentioned that the subject vehicles are also equipped with gas tank flap labels that provide the recommended inflation pressures for the tires and corresponding axles. The gas tank flap label clearly states what inflation pressures should be used for each axle. Upon evaluation of the information provided on the gas tank flap labels, the agency noted that some of the pressures are exactly the same as those specified on the vehicle placard label discussed above, however, on many of the vehicles the pressures on both axles are 4 psi less than those listed on the vehicle placard. The agency conducted a second evaluation to see if the tires on the subject vehicles, at the lower gas tank flap labeled inflation pressures, would still be appropriate for the respective vehicle GAWRs in accordance with the requirements of FMVSS No. 110. The agency determined that the tires on the subject vehicles, at the inflation pressures stated on the alternative gas tank flap labels, would still be appropriate for the respective vehicle’s GAWRs. The agency also considered the safety implications of providing a partially PO 00000 Frm 00092 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 9990 25119 legible FMVSS No. 110 vehicle placard on the subject vehicles. Vehicle placards are typically referenced by vehicle operators and relay important information pertaining to tire and loading information. As MBUSA mentioned, the labels on the subject vehicles are substantially legible and clearly provide the vehicle capacity weight, seating capacity and position, as well as the tire sizes with corresponding recommended tire inflation pressures. These labels also recommend that the owner’s manual can be referenced for further information. The tire related information that may not be legible can be readily found in other locations (i.e. gas tank filler flap, tire sidewall, and owner’s manual). VII. NHTSA’s Decision: In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA has decided that MBUSA has met its burden of persuasion that the subject noncompliance with FMVSS No. 110 is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. Accordingly, NHTSA hereby grants MBUSA’s petition. MBUSA is therefore exempted from the obligation of providing notification of and free remedy for, that noncompliance under 49 U.S.C. 30118 AND 30120. NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, this decision only applies to the subject vehicles that MBUSA no longer controlled at the time it determined that the noncompliance existed. However, the granting of this petition does not relieve vehicle distributors and dealers of the prohibitions on the sale, offer for sale, or introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce of the noncompliant vehicles under their control after MBUSA notified them that the subject noncompliance existed. Authority: (49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: delegations of authority at 49 CFR 1.95 and 501.8). Otto G. Matheke III, Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance. [FR Doc. 2019–11212 Filed 5–29–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–59–P E:\FR\FM\30MYN1.SGM 30MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 104 (Thursday, May 30, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 25118-25119]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-11212]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2016-0143; Notice 2]


Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC, Grant of Petition for Decision of 
Inconsequential Noncompliance

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 
Department of Transportation (DOT).

ACTION: Grant of petition.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC (MBUSA) on behalf of itself and its 
parent company Daimler AG (DAG), has determined that certain model year 
(MY) 2016-2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE and GLS-Class motor vehicles do not 
fully comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 
110, Tire Selection and Rims and Motor Home/Recreation Vehicle Trailer 
Load Carrying Capacity Information for Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of 
4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) or Less. MBUSA filed a noncompliance 
information report dated December 12, 2016, and subsequently petitioned 
NHTSA on December 22, 2016, for a decision that the subject 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety. 
This document announces the grant of MBUSA's petition.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kerrin Bressant, Office of Vehicle 
Safety Compliance, NHTSA, telephone (202) 366-1110, facsimile (202) 
366-5930.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 
    I. Overview: MBUSA has determined that certain MY 2016-2017 
Mercedes-Benz GLE and GLS-Class motor vehicles do not fully comply with 
paragraph S4.3 of FMVSS No. 110, Tire Selection and Rims and Motor 
Home/Recreation Vehicle Trailer Load Carrying Capacity Information for 
Motor Vehicles with a GVWR of 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) or Less 
(49 CFR 571.110). MBUSA filed a noncompliance information report dated 
December 12, 2016, pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, Defect and 
Noncompliance Responsibility and Reports. MBUSA subsequently petitioned 
NHTSA on December 22, 2016, pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) 
and 49 CFR part 556, Exemption for Inconsequential Defect or 
Noncompliance, for an exemption from the notification and remedy 
requirements of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the basis that this 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety.
    Notice of receipt of MBUSA's petition was published, with a 30-day 
public comment period on April 11, 2017, in the Federal Register (82 FR 
17515). No comments were received. To view the petition and all 
supporting documents, log onto the Federal Docket Management System 
(FDMS) web page at: http://www.regulations.gov/ and follow the online 
search instruction to locate docket number ``NHTSA-2016-0143.''
    II. Vehicles Involved: Approximately 142 of the following Mercedes-
Benz GLE and GLS-Class motor vehicles manufactured on June 14 and June 
15, 2016, are potentially involved:

 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE300d 4Matic
 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE350
 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE350 4Matic
 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE400 4Matic
 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE550e 4Matic
 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE63S AMG 4Matic
 2017 Mercedes-Benz GL450 4Matic
 2017 Mercedes-Benz GL550 4Matic

    III. Noncompliance: MBUSA explains that the noncompliance is that 
the tire information placard affixed to the driver's side B-pillar on 
the subject vehicles was improperly printed and therefore does not meet 
the requirements of paragraph S4.3 of FMVSS No. 110. Specifically, the 
column identifying whether the tire is front, rear, or spare might not 
be completely legible.
    IV. Rule Text: Paragraph S4.3 of FMVSS No. 110 includes the 
requirements relevant to this petition:
     Each vehicle, except for a trailer or incomplete vehicle 
shall show the information specified in paragraph S4.3 (a) through (g), 
and may show, at the manufacturer's option, the information specified 
in paragraph S4.3 (h) and (i), on a placard permanently affixed to the 
driver's side B-pillar.
     This information shall be in the English language and 
conform in color and format, not including the border surrounding the 
entire placard, as shown in the example set forth in Figure 1 of FMVSS 
No. 110:
    (c) Vehicle manufacturer's recommended cold tire inflation pressure 
for front, rear and spare tires.
    (d) Tire size designation, indicated by the headings ``size'' or 
``original tire

[[Page 25119]]

size'' or ``original size'' and ``spare tire'' or ``spare,'' for the 
tires installed at the time of first purchase for purposes other than 
resale.
    V. Summary of MBUSA's Petition: MBUSA described the subject 
noncompliance and stated its belief that the noncompliance is 
inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety.
    In support of its petition, MBUSA submitted the following 
reasoning:
    1. The row names ``front/rear/spare'' might not be completely 
legible, but the tire dimensions and pressure values are legible and 
correct.
    2. The data, including the ``front/rear/spare'' designations, is 
also available on the tank flap to the gas tank (also referred to as 
the ``filler flap'').
    3. After identifying the potentially noncompliant B-pillar tire 
information placards, DAG analyzed potential technical implications, 
specifically with respect to the requirements of FMVSS No. 110, and did 
not identify any technical implications since the label remains 
substantially legible and the same information is provided elsewhere on 
the vehicle.
    4. MBUSA has received neither customer complaints nor information 
about any accidents or injuries alleged to have occurred as a result of 
this noncompliance.
    5. DAG has correct labels in production as of June 15, 2016.
    MBUSA concluded by expressing the belief that the subject 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety, 
and that its petition to be exempted from providing notification of the 
noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118, and a remedy for the 
noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120, should be granted.
    VI. NHTSA's Analysis: MBUSA explained that the noncompliance is 
that the subject vehicles are equipped with an FMVSS No. 110 tire and 
information vehicle placard which isn't properly printed. FMVSS No. 110 
requires that the vehicle placard identify the installed tire sizes and 
recommended inflation pressures for each vehicle axle (i.e. front and 
rear) and the size of the spare tire, if equipped. The axle and spare 
tire identification labeling on the affected vehicles is not completely 
legible, however, the given tire dimensions and inflation pressure 
values on the label are correct.
    Assuming a worst-case scenario where the axle and spare tire 
identification information (i.e., front, rear and spare) were totally 
missing, the vehicle operator could inadvertently be misguided to the 
incorrect inflation pressure for the tires installed on each axle and 
the spare tire. The operator could easily identify the tire size by 
visually looking at the tires fitted to each axle and the spare tire. 
By comparing the actual tire sizes to the information on the vehicle 
placard, the spare tire could be easily differentiated from the tires 
mounted on the axles because of its much smaller size. The same tire 
size is used on both the front and rear axles. The vehicle placards on 
the subject vehicles recommend 41-45 psi for the front axle and 44-51 
psi for the rear axle, depending on the model type. The concern is that 
the vehicle placards list two different inflation pressures for the 
tires mounted on the vehicles, but does not properly identify what 
pressure is for the front axle and which is for the rear axle.
    FMVSS No. 110 requires the tires, at the recommended inflation 
pressures, be appropriate for the vehicle's gross axle weight ratings 
(GAWRs). The agency evaluated the affected vehicles against this FMVSS 
No. 110 requirement and in the unlikely event that the operator 
``guessed'' incorrectly or simply opted to inflate all four tires to 
the lowest stated pressure, the tires would be appropriate for the 
vehicle's GAWRs. Information provided by the ETRTO (European Tire and 
Rim Technical Organization) validates that at the lower pressures, the 
tires on the subject vehicles, are adequate to handle maximum vehicle 
loads.
    In further communications regarding this petition, MBUSA mentioned 
that the subject vehicles are also equipped with gas tank flap labels 
that provide the recommended inflation pressures for the tires and 
corresponding axles. The gas tank flap label clearly states what 
inflation pressures should be used for each axle. Upon evaluation of 
the information provided on the gas tank flap labels, the agency noted 
that some of the pressures are exactly the same as those specified on 
the vehicle placard label discussed above, however, on many of the 
vehicles the pressures on both axles are 4 psi less than those listed 
on the vehicle placard. The agency conducted a second evaluation to see 
if the tires on the subject vehicles, at the lower gas tank flap 
labeled inflation pressures, would still be appropriate for the 
respective vehicle GAWRs in accordance with the requirements of FMVSS 
No. 110. The agency determined that the tires on the subject vehicles, 
at the inflation pressures stated on the alternative gas tank flap 
labels, would still be appropriate for the respective vehicle's GAWRs.
    The agency also considered the safety implications of providing a 
partially legible FMVSS No. 110 vehicle placard on the subject 
vehicles. Vehicle placards are typically referenced by vehicle 
operators and relay important information pertaining to tire and 
loading information. As MBUSA mentioned, the labels on the subject 
vehicles are substantially legible and clearly provide the vehicle 
capacity weight, seating capacity and position, as well as the tire 
sizes with corresponding recommended tire inflation pressures. These 
labels also recommend that the owner's manual can be referenced for 
further information. The tire related information that may not be 
legible can be readily found in other locations (i.e. gas tank filler 
flap, tire sidewall, and owner's manual).
    VII. NHTSA's Decision: In consideration of the foregoing, NHTSA has 
decided that MBUSA has met its burden of persuasion that the subject 
noncompliance with FMVSS No. 110 is inconsequential to motor vehicle 
safety. Accordingly, NHTSA hereby grants MBUSA's petition. MBUSA is 
therefore exempted from the obligation of providing notification of and 
free remedy for, that noncompliance under 49 U.S.C. 30118 AND 30120.
    NHTSA notes that the statutory provisions (49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 
30120(h)) that permit manufacturers to file petitions for a 
determination of inconsequentiality allow NHTSA to exempt manufacturers 
only from the duties found in sections 30118 and 30120, respectively, 
to notify owners, purchasers, and dealers of a defect or noncompliance 
and to remedy the defect or noncompliance. Therefore, this decision 
only applies to the subject vehicles that MBUSA no longer controlled at 
the time it determined that the noncompliance existed. However, the 
granting of this petition does not relieve vehicle distributors and 
dealers of the prohibitions on the sale, offer for sale, or 
introduction or delivery for introduction into interstate commerce of 
the noncompliant vehicles under their control after MBUSA notified them 
that the subject noncompliance existed.

    Authority:  (49 U.S.C. 30118, 30120: delegations of authority at 
49 CFR 1.95 and 501.8).

Otto G. Matheke III,
Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2019-11212 Filed 5-29-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-59-P