Thursday, January 19, 2017

NHTSA Publishes V2V Communications NPRM

Last week the DOT’s National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register (82 FR 3854-4019) to establish a new Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS), No. 150, to mandate vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications for new light vehicles and to standardize the message and format of V2V transmissions.

The new FMVSS would establish a requirement for all new light vehicles (< 10,000 lbs gross vehicle weight) would include include vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology able to transmit standardized Basic Safety Messages (BSMs) over dedicated short-range radio communication (DSRC) devices. The requirement would be phased in over a three year period starting two years after the issuance of the final rule.

The lengthy NPRM (434 pages) breaks the NTSA proposal into seven sections:

• The actual communications technology itself;
• Proposed messaging format and content requirements;
Authenticating V2V messages;
Malfunction indication requirements;
Software and certificate updating requirements; and
• Proposed cybersecurity related requirements.

The discussion of cybersecurity requirements is rather extensive in the preamble to the proposed rule. The actual specific cybersecurity requirements in the proposed FMVSS, however, are currently space holding messages where the cybersecurity requirements will be listed (see for example here). This is because NHTSA still has a lot of questions for which it is seeking responses on cybersecurity issues. NHTSA is addressing the cybersecurity concerns with the following general comment (and then a number of questions about specific issues):

“NHTSA seeks comments regarding the cybersecurity needs and requirements and how regulatory language could be crafted to appropriately express the requirements in terms that industry can implement and in terms by which performance can be objectively evaluated.”

NHTSA is seeking public comments on this NPRM. Comments may be submitted via the Federal eRulemaking Portal (; Docket # NHTSA-2016-0126). Comments need to be submitted by April 12th, 2017.

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