7 Ways Biden’s Infrastructure Bill Could Change Your Future Car

  • In addition to repairing bridges and roads, the 1039-page infrastructure bill that is about to be signed by President Biden addresses safety concerns for future vehicles.
  • Carmakers may be asked to make future car hoods and bumpers more protective, to incorporate DUI prevention technology, and to make active safety technology and features such as rear seat alerts and retractable protection in features. standard.
  • Perhaps best of all, we will soon have a European-style adaptive light beam headlights.

    HR3684, better known as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, is no longer just a bill sitting on Capitol Hill. It is now a bill waiting for the president to sign it into law, which President Biden is expected to do on Monday.

    While the 1039-page legislative block encompasses a wide range of infrastructure and jobs-related investments, it also incorporates a number of provisions for standardizing vehicle safety features. The bill also includes safety clauses for commercial trucks and limousines, but for now let’s focus specifically on how the legislation can affect the vehicles that individuals buy or rent for private use.

    Biden talks about infrastructure at a meeting with governors and mayors in August.

    ALMOND NGANGetty Images

    Active safety at the front

    The change can come to the hoods and bumpers of cars. Within two years of its approval, the law requires the Secretary of Transportation to issue a notice of potential upgrades to these specific body parts. The target. the goal? To better incorporate active safety features within these two outer pieces, as well as to improve the protection of pedestrians and cyclists in the event of a collision with a car.

    The Secretary of Transportation, currently Pete Buttigieg, must then submit a notification report to Congress within the same two-year period. The information gleaned from both the notice and the report could ultimately result in the United States adopting new standards for hoods and bumpers that not only improve vehicle safety but can also affect vehicle design.

    After all, see how the pedestrian impact standards of the European Union influenced the styling of the vehicles now that they are built to meet similar regulations. The standards there aim to reduce the chance of a pedestrian or other vulnerable road user suffering a head injury by increasing the space between the underside of a car’s hood and the top of any hard part underneath (this includes items such as motor, wiper motor and more). The rules, which came into effect in the early part of the previous decade, eventually led car manufacturers to lift the hoods of vehicles they intended to sell in EU countries. Some manufacturers have come up with methods, such as hoods that automatically pop up in the event of an accident, to meet regulatory requirements by keeping a lower hood line.

    Likewise, Congress includes provisions within the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to ensure that connected vehicle systems take pedestrians and cyclists into account when implementing those capabilities. It is possible that this part of the bill affects the way some car manufacturers are launched V2X communication technology in their future products.

    Stop DUIs before they happen

    According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), about 28 people die every day in the United States in a drunk driving accident. The government hopes to be able to curb this by requiring vehicles manufactured after a certain date to be equipped with technology to prevent drunk and visually impaired driving. This will take effect within three years of the approval of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

    That said, there is a good deal of leeway in this time frame. The bill also includes language that dictates what the Secretary of Transportation must do in the event that a rule to standardize such technology fails to meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS) 10 years after the date of approval of the law.

    Adaptive high beams are coming to America!

    Americans are left to kick the dust as other markets, including Europe, are coming to drive cars equipped with adaptive high beams. Fortunately, this is bound to end soon, as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act grants the Secretary of Transportation a maximum of two years after its passage to amend Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard Number 108 (FMVSS 108) and enable car manufacturers to integrate this deceptive headlight technology into the vehicles they ship to our shores.

    In addition, the bill includes provisions to establish a performance-based standard for projectors. We assume this means NHTSA will soon adopt a headlight performance rating system, such as the Road Safety Insurance Institute it already does.

    Standard FCW, AEB, LDW and LKA

    Front Collision Warning, Automated Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keeping Assist systems are coming to your future car, whether you like it or not. When, however, it is still up for debate, as the law gives the Secretary of Transportation the power to set a date to make this technology mandatory.

    Standard rear seat reminder

    Rear seat reminders, which alert the driver of a possible rear seat occupant, such as a child or pet, as they prepare to get out of the vehicle, are becoming more common in today’s vehicles. However, this technology is not universally enforced.

    That may soon change, however, as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act grants the Secretary of Transportation up to two years after the law is passed to issue a ruling requiring all vehicles with a gross weight of 10,000 pounds or less to be equipped with such a system.

    Additionally, the bill includes provisions for the Secretary of Transportation to make updates to vehicle seat safety standards within two years of the law being passed. It remains to be seen what changes, if any, will be.

    Automatic engine shutdown

    Although the days of the internal combustion engine seem numbered (at least in passenger cars), its probable disappearance is still a few years away. In order to prevent such energy sources from killing (intentionally or inadvertently) people due to carbon monoxide poisoning, the government wants to impose automatic engine shutdown systems in new vehicles with ICE powertrains. Such a system automatically switches off the engine after a certain idle period without interruption. The specific time period can vary between vehicles depending on the amount of carbon monoxide emitted by each, by law. Unlike today’s automatic stop and start systems, which aim to save fuel by starting and stopping the car in motion, this setup will presumably work when the car is parked.

    Given the current shortage of chips, we bet the Secretary of Transportation will work with automakers to gradually introduce or even delay the implementation of this feature until the supply of microchips catches up with demand. Once the government has formally issued this warrant, however, it plans to enforce the addition of this feature on September 1 of the following calendar year.

    Stop, drop and (don’t) roll

    The NHTSA It reports that unattended retractable vehicles killed 142 people and injured 2,000 more in 2015. To prevent such incidents, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act gives the Secretary of Transportation one year from its passage to conduct a study to determine potential benefits and consequences of the technology requirement that vehicles with automatic transmission and prevents keyless ignition systems from inadvertently rolling over.

    Only time will tell if anything will come out of this study. That said, a number of vehicles already automatically activate parking if the driver’s door opens with the gear selector in neutral, reverse or drive to prevent an unattended rollaway.

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