May 20, 2024

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All new American cars must have automatic braking by 2029

All new American cars must have automatic braking by 2029

Starting in 2029, a new federal safety regulation will require all new cars and trucks in the U.S. to be sold with automatic emergency braking — sensors that apply brakes to avoid a collision if the driver doesn't do so.

The new rule, which became final Monday, imposes more stringent requirements than the automatic emergency braking technology now sold in most cars, even going beyond the point of current technological feasibility, the automakers said. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has set a September 2029 date for compliance, saying it is confident the systems will be ready by then.

According to the standards set forth in A A 317-page documentAll “light vehicles,” including cars, pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles, must be able to automatically apply their brakes to avoid colliding with another vehicle at speeds of up to 62 mph. The system would also have to at least begin to apply the brakes at speeds up to 90 mph if a collision was imminent. This is higher than the US speed limit of 85 mph. The system will have to detect pedestrians as well.

Biden administration officials said the rules are necessary because of the steady rise in traffic deaths in recent years. “The new vehicle safety standards we finalized today will save hundreds of lives and prevent tens of thousands of injuries every year,” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said in a statement.

An estimated 41,000 people will be killed in car accidents in the United States in 2023.

Automatic braking systems are a relatively new feature, and regulators and automakers alike agree they have already helped save lives. Introduced in 2011, they typically use cameras, radar, or both to identify other vehicles, pedestrians, or obstacles in front of the vehicle.

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They usually alert the driver if a collision is likely to occur, and then force them to apply the brakes if necessary.

Automakers said they needed no prompting to adopt the systems, noting that they voluntarily agreed in 2016 to make the technology standard on all new cars and trucks. About 90 percent of new cars for sale now have some form of automatic emergency braking.

Regulators said on Monday that carmakers had expressed concern about “taking away driver authority” at high speeds.

The industry's main lobby group, the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, “believes that expectations that manufacturers will be able to provide unlimited levels of avoidance at all speeds are neither practical nor reasonable,” regulators said.

The Biden administration estimated the cost of the rule at an average of $23 per vehicle.