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BMW of North America, LLC, a Subsidiary of BMW AG, Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  BMW X6

BMW of North America, LLC, a Subsidiary of BMW AG, Grant of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

Claude H. Harris
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
July 22, 2013


[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 140 (Monday, July 22, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 43964-43965]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-17432]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2012-0075; Notice 2]


BMW of North America, LLC, a Subsidiary of BMW AG, Grant of 
Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

AGENCY: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, DOT.

ACTION: Grant of petition.

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SUMMARY: BMW of North America, LLC \1\ a subsidiary of BMW AG.\2\ has 
determined that certain model year (MY) 2012 BMW X6M SAV multipurpose 
passenger vehicles (MPV) manufactured between April 1, 2011 and March 
23, 2012, do not fully comply with paragraph S4.3 (b) of 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. BMW has filed an appropriate report dated April 4, 
2012,

[[Page 43965]]

pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility 
and Reports.
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    \1\ BMW of North America, LLC is a U.S. company that 
manufacturers and imports motor vehicles.
    \2\ BMW AG is a German company that manufactures motor vehicles.
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    Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) and the rule 
implementing those provisions at 49 CFR part 556, BMW has petitioned 
for an exemption from the notification and remedy requirements of 49 
U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the basis that this noncompliance is 
inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. Notice of receipt of the 
petition was published, with a 30-day public comment period, on June 
25, 2012 in the Federal Register (77 FR 37956.) No comments were 
received. To view the petition and all supporting documents log onto 
the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Web site at: http://www.regulations.gov/. Then follow the online search instructions to 
locate docket number ``NHTSA-2012-0075.''
    Contact Information: For further information on this decision 
contact Ms. Amina Fisher, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance, the 
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), telephone (202) 
366-1018, facsimile (202) 366-5930.
    Vehicles Involved: Affected are approximately 364 MY 2012 BMW X6M 
SAV MPVs manufactured between April 1, 2011 and March 23, 2012.
    Rule Text: Section S4.3(b) of FMVSS No. 110 specifically states:

    S4.3 (b) Placard. Each vehicle, except for a trailer or 
incomplete vehicle, shall show the information specified in S4.3(a) 
through (g), and may show, at the manufacturer's option, the 
information specified in S4.3(h) and (i), on a placard permanently 
affixed to the driver's side B-pillar. * * *
    b) Designated seated capacity (expressed in terms of total 
number of occupants and number of occupants for each front and rear 
seat location); * * *

    Summary of BMW'S Analyses: BMW explains that the noncompliance is 
that the tire placard on the affected vehicles incorrectly identifies 
the rear designated seating capacity as ``2'' when in fact it should be 
``3,'' and the total designated seating capacity as ``4'' when in fact 
it should be ``5.''
    BMW states that while the tire placard incorrectly identifies the 
vehicle seating capacity, this noncompliance is inconsequential to 
motor vehicle safety for the following reasons:
    1. It would become clear to a vehicle owner that the rear seat of 
the affected vehicles contains three sets of seat belts, and provides 
adequate space for three people to occupy the rear seat and that the 
vehicle in fact does accommodate five passengers not four as labeled.
    2. The tire pressure value on the tire placard is correct. In fact, 
the recommended tire inflation pressure for both the five passenger and 
the four passenger vehicles is the same. Therefore, there is no risk of 
under-inflation.
    3. The vehicle capacity weight listed on the tire placard is 
correct, and is the same for X6M model vehicles built for four or five 
occupants. Therefore, there is no risk of overloading.
    4. The vehicle's Monroney label contains a listing of all options 
that have been equipped on the affected vehicles. The option regarding 
the rear seat for three occupants is noted on the Monroney label; 
therefore, an owner would have been notified at time of purchase of the 
vehicle that the rear seat is equipped to accommodate three occupants.
    5. The vehicle Owner's Manual contains information pertaining to 
the vehicle's tires, tire pressure, and the vehicle capacity weight. 
Therefore, if owners check the Owner's Manual, correct information is 
available for their use.
    6. BMW also offers Roadside Assistance\TM\ and BMW Assist\TM\ which 
are available 24 hours/day with representatives that are available to 
provide drivers with all of the available tires sizes and 
specifications for the affected vehicles.
    7. BMW has received no customer complaints and are unaware of any 
accidents or injuries regarding this noncompliance of the affected 
vehicles.
    BMW has additionally informed NHTSA that it has corrected future 
production and that all other required markings are present and 
correct.
    BMW also expressed its belief that NHTSA has previously granted 
similar petitions.
    In summation, BMW believes that the described noncompliance of the 
subject vehicles is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety, and that 
its petition, to exempt from providing recall notification of 
noncompliance as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118 and remedying the recall 
noncompliance as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120 should be granted.
    NHTSA Decision: NHTSA has reviewed and accepts BMW's analyses that 
the noncompliance is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety. BMW has 
provided sufficient documentation that other than the labeling error, 
the vehicles comply with all other safety performance requirements of 
FMVSS No. 110. Since the correct information is provided in other 
locations, BMW has met its burden of persuasion. Accordingly, BMW's 
petition is hereby granted, and BMW is exempted from the obligation of 
providing notification of, and a 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 364 vehicles that BMW no longer controlled at the 
time it determined that a noncompliance existed. However, the granting 
of this petition does not relieve 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 BMW 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)

    Issued on: July 9, 2013.
Claude H. Harris,
Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2013-17432 Filed 7-19-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-P



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