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Decision That Nonconforming 1992 Ferrari 348TB Passenger Cars Are Eligible for Importation

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Ferrari 348

Decision That Nonconforming 1992 Ferrari 348TB Passenger Cars Are Eligible for Importation

William A. Boehly
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
Federal Register
December 16, 1994

[Federal Register: December 16, 1994]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
[Docket No. 94-54; Notice 2]

 
Decision That Nonconforming 1992 Ferrari 348TB Passenger Cars Are 
Eligible for Importation

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

ACTION: Notice of decision by NHTSA that nonconforming 1992 Ferrari 
348TB passenger cars are eligible for importation.

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SUMMARY: This notice announces the decision by NHTSA that 1992 Ferrari 
348TB passenger cars not originally manufactured to comply with all 
applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards are eligible for 
importation into the United States because they are substantially 
similar to a vehicle originally manufactured for importation into and 
sale in the United States and certified by its manufacturer as 
complying with the safety standards (the U.S.-certified version of the 
1992 Ferrari 348TB), and they are capable of being readily altered to 
conform to the standards.

DATES: This decision is effective December 16, 1994.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Ted Bayler, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance, NHTSA (202-366-5306).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Under 49 U.S.C. 30141(a)(1)(A) (formerly section 108(c)(3)(A)(i) of 
the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act (the Act)), a motor 
vehicle that was not originally manufactured to conform to all 
applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards shall be refused 
admission into the United States unless NHTSA has decided that the 
motor vehicle is substantially similar to a motor vehicle originally 
manufactured for importation into and sale in the United States, 
certified under 49 U.S.C. 30115 (formerly section 114 of the Act), and 
of the same model year as the model of the motor vehicle to be 
compared, and is capable of being readily altered to conform to all 
applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards.
    Petitions for eligibility decisions may be submitted by either 
manufacturers or importers who have registered with NHTSA pursuant to 
49 CFR Part 592. As specified in 49 CFR 593.7, NHTSA publishes notice 
in the Federal Register of each petition that it receives, and affords 
interested persons an opportunity to comment on the petition. At the 
close of the comment period, NHTSA decides, on the basis of the 
petition and any comments that it has received, whether the vehicle is 
eligible for importation. The agency then publishes this decision in 
the Federal Register.
    Champagne Imports, Inc. of Lansdale, Pennsylvania (Registered 
Importer R-90-009) petitioned NHTSA to decide whether 1992 Ferrari 
348TB passenger cars are eligible for importation into the United 
States. NHTSA published notice of the petition on July 20, 1994 (59 FR 
37126) to afford an opportunity for public comment.
    As stated in that notice, the vehicle which Champagne claimed to be 
substantially similar is the version of 1992 Ferrari 348TB that Ferrari 
S.p.A. manufactured for importation into and sale in the United States 
and certified as conforming to all applicable Federal motor vehicle 
safety standards. The petitioner alleged that it had carefully compared 
the two vehicles, and found them to be substantially similar with 
respect to compliance with most applicable Federal motor vehicle safety 
standards.
    Specifically, the petitioner claimed that the non-U.S. certified 
1992 Ferrari 348TB is identical to its U.S. certified counterpart with 
respect to compliance with Standard Nos. 102 Transmission Shift Lever 
Sequence . . . ., 103 Defrosting and Defogging Systems, 104 Windshield 
Wiping and Washing Systems, 105 Hydraulic Brake Systems, 106 Brake 
Hoses, 107 Reflecting Surfaces, 109 New Pneumatic Tires, 112 Headlamp 
Concealment Devices, 113 Hood Latch Systems, 116 Brake Fluid, 124 
Accelerator Control Systems, 201 Occupant Protection in Interior 
Impact, 202 Head Restraints, 203 Impact Protection for the Driver Form 
the Steering Control System, 204 Steering Control Rearward 
Displacement, 205 Glazing Materials, 206 Door Locks and Door Retention 
Components, 207 Seating Systems, 210 Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages, 211 
Wheel Nuts, Wheel Discs and Hubcaps, 212 Windshield Retention, 216 roof 
Crush Resistance, 219 Windshield Zone Intrusion, and 302 Flammability 
of Interior Materials.
    Additionally, the petitioner stated that the non-U.S. certified 
1992 Ferrari 348TB complies with the Bumper Standard found in 49 CFR 
Part 581.
    Petitioners also contended that the non-U.S. certified 1992 Ferrari 
348TB is capable of being readily modified to meet the following 
standards, in the manner indicated:
    Standard No. 101 Controls and Displays: (a) substitution of a lens 
marked ``Brake'' for a lens with an ECE symbol on the brake failure 
indicator lamp; (b) installation of a seat belt warning lamp; (c) 
recalibration of speedometer/odometer from kilometers to miles per 
hour.
    Standard No. 108 Lamps Reflective Devices and Associated Equipment: 
(a) installation of U.S.-model headlamp assemblies which incorporate 
sealed beam headlamps; (b) installation of front and rear sidemarker/
reflector assemblies; (c) installation of a high mounted stop lamp.
    Standard No. 110 Tire Selection and Rims: installation of a tire 
information placard.
    Standard No. 111 Rearview Mirrors: replacement of the passenger 
side rearview mirror, which is convex but lacks the required warning 
statement.
    Standard No. 114 Theft Protection: installation of a buzzer 
microswitch and a warning buzzer in the steering lock electrical 
assembly.
    Standard No. 115 Vehicle Identification Number: Installation of a 
VIN plate that can be read from outside the left windshield pillar, and 
a VIN reference label on the edge of the door or latch post nearest the 
driver.
    Standard No. 118 Power-Operated Window System: rewiring of the 
power window system so that the window transport is iniperative when 
the ignition is switched off.
    Standard No. 208 Occupant Crash Protection: (a) installation of an 
ignition switch-actuated seat belt warning lamp and buzzer; (b) 
installation of a passive restraint system consisting of driver and 
passenger side automatic seat belt assemblies, tracks, and a control 
unit that have part numbers identical to those found on the U.S. 
certified 1992 Ferrari 348TB. The petitioner claimed that the lower 
dash panel on the non-U.S. certified 1992 Ferrari 348TB is identical to 
that found on its U.S. certified counterpart, and that a knee bolster 
is not supplied on the U.S. certified vehicle.
    Standard No. 209 Seat Belt Assemblies: installation of seat belts 
labeled in accordance with the standard.
    Standard No. 214 Side Door Strength: installation of reinforcing 
beams.
    Standard No. 301 Fuel System Integrity: installation of a rollover 
valve in the fuel tank vent line between the fuel tank and the 
evaporative emissions collection canister. The reader is referred to 
that notice for a thorough description of the petition.
    One comment was received in response to the notice of the petition, 
from Fiat Auto U.S.A., Inc. (Fiat), the United States representative of 
Ferrari. In its comment, Fiat stated that Ferrari, and other companies 
within the Fiat Group, have invested considerable resources in the 
design and production of vehicles that comply with the Federal motor 
vehicle safety standards. Although it stated that it has not determined 
what modifications are necessary to bring a vehicle into compliance 
with the Federal safety standards, Fiat contended that it is not 
possible to achieve such compliance by simply retrofitting a vehicle 
built for the European market, without conducting extensive development 
and testing.
    NHTSA accorded Champagne an opportunity to respond to Fiat's 
comment. In its response, Champagne stated that the entire passive 
restraint system that it proposes to install in the non-U.S. certified 
1992 Ferrari 348TB, including the control unit and the wiring harness, 
is available from Ferrari in kit form. Champagne further stated that it 
is simple to install this equipment because all mounting points are 
supplied on the non-U.S. certified vehicle.
    As they have been performed with relative ease on thousands of 
vehicles imported over the years, none of the other modifications 
described in the petition would preclude NHTSA from determining that 
the non-U.S. certified 1992 Ferrari 348TB is eligible for importation. 
NHTSA has accordingly decided to grant the petition.

Vehicle Eligibility Number for Subject Vehicles

    The importer of a vehicle admissible under any final decision must 
indicate on the form HS-7 accompanying entry the appropriate vehicle 
eligibility number indicating that the vehicle is eligible for entry. 
VSP 86 is the vehicle eligibility number assigned to vehicles 
admissible under this decision.

Final Determination

    Accordingly, on the basis of the foregoing, NHTSA hereby decides 
that a 1992 Ferrari 348TB not originally manufactured to comply with 
all applicable Federal motor vehicle safety standards is substantially 
similar to a 1992 Ferrari 348TB originally manufactured for importation 
into and sale in the United States and certified under 49 U.S.C. 30115, 
and is capable of being readily altered to conform to all applicable 
Federal motor vehicle safety standards.

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 30141(a)(10(A) and (b)(1); 49 CFR 593.8; 
delegations of authority at 49 CFR 1.50 and 501.8.

    Issued on: December 13, 1994.
William A. Boehly,
Associate Administrator for Enforcement.
[FR Doc. 94-31014 Filed 12-15-94; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-59-M

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