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Maserati S.p.A and Maserati North America, Inc., Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Maserati

Maserati S.p.A and Maserati North America, Inc., Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

Jeffrey Giuseppe
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
September 8, 2015


[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 173 (Tuesday, September 8, 2015)]
[Notices]
[Pages 53912-53913]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-22569]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2014-0034; Notice 1]


Maserati S.p.A and Maserati North America, Inc., Receipt of 
Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

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

ACTION: Receipt of Petition.

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SUMMARY: Maserati S.p.A and Maserati North America, Inc. (collectively 
referred to as ``MNA'') has determined that certain MY 2011-2014 
Maserati passenger vehicles do not fully comply with paragraph 
S4.4(c)(2), of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 138, 
Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems. MNA has filed an appropriate report 
dated March 3, 2014, pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, Defect and 
Noncompliance Responsibility and Reports.

DATES: The closing date for comments on the petition is October 8, 
2015.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons are invited to submit written data, 
views, and arguments on this petition. Comments must refer to the 
docket and notice number cited at the beginning of this notice and 
submitted by any of the following methods:
     Mail: Send comments by mail addressed to: U.S. Department 
of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.
     Hand Deliver: Deliver comments by hand to: U.S. Department 
of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, 
Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. The 
Docket Section is open on weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. except 
Federal Holidays.
     Electronically: Submit comments electronically by: logging 
onto the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) Web site at http://www.regulations.gov/. Follow the online instructions for submitting 
comments. Comments may also be faxed to (202) 493-2251.
    Comments must be written in the English language, and be no greater 
than 15 pages in length, although there is no limit to the length of 
necessary attachments to the comments. If comments are submitted in 
hard copy form, please ensure that two copies are provided. If you wish 
to receive confirmation that your comments were received, please 
enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard with the comments. Note that 
all comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided.
    Documents submitted to a docket may be viewed by anyone at the 
address and times given above. The documents may also be viewed on the 
Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by following the online 
instructions for accessing the dockets. DOT's complete Privacy Act 
Statement is available for review in the Federal Register published on 
April 11, 2000, (65 FR 19477-78).
    The petition, supporting materials, and all comments received 
before the close of business on the closing date indicated above will 
be filed and will be considered. All comments and supporting materials 
received after the closing date will also be filed and will be 
considered to the extent possible. When the petition is granted or 
denied, notice of the decision will be published in the Federal 
Register pursuant to the authority indicated below.

[[Page 53913]]


SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. MNA's Petition

    Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 30120(h) and the rule 
implementing those provisions at 49 CFR part 556, MNA submitted a 
petition 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.
    This notice of receipt of MNA's petition is published under 49 
U.S.C. 30118 and 30120 and does not represent any agency decision or 
other exercise of judgment concerning the merits of the petition.

II. Vehicles Involved

    Affected are approximately 8,789 MY 2011-2013 Maserati Quattroporte 
and 2011-2014 Maserati Granturismo/Granturismo Convertible passenger 
vehicles.

III. Noncompliance

    MNA explains that the noncompliance is that when the vehicle's TPMS 
detects a missing or inactive wheel sensor the vehicles do not fully 
comply with paragraph S4.4(c)(2) of FMVSS No. 138 because the 
malfunction indicator does not always illuminate as required.
    Specifically, after the car's ignition is switched to the on 
position, the TPMS immediately seeks to confirm if all wheel sensors 
are present. If the TPMS then detects a sensor is not present, an 
internal timer is started. If the sensor detected as missing was also 
detected as missing during the previous ignition cycle, and the engine 
is not restarted, then the TPMS malfunction indicator will illuminate 
as required to indicate a hardware fault is still present. If the 
engine is then started and left in its steady state (engine not cold) 
idle, the warning lamp will continue to remain illuminated as required. 
However, if the car is then driven, the warning lamp will extinguish 
[in violation of the standard] as the system prepares to confirm that 
all wheel sensors are fitted to the vehicle. Once the vehicle has been 
moving above 22 mph for a period of 15 seconds the TPMS will seek to 
confirm that all wheel sensors are fitted to the vehicle. If the 
internal timer reaches 160 seconds, and the vehicle has been moving 
above 22 mph for 15 seconds, the TPMS malfunction indicator will 
illuminate correctly. Once the malfunction indicator is illuminated, it 
remains so throughout that ignition cycle, regardless of the vehicle's 
speed.
    Rule Text: Paragraph S4.4(c)(2) of FMVSS No. 138 requires in 
pertinent part:
    S4.4 TPMS Malfunction.
    (c) Combination low tire pressure/TPMS malfunction telltale. The 
vehicle meets the requirements of S4.4(a) when equipped with a combined 
Low Tire Pressure/TPMS malfunction telltale that:
    (2) Flashes for a period of at least 60 seconds but no longer than 
90 seconds upon detection of any condition specified in S4.4(a) after 
the ignition locking system is activated to the ``On'' (``Run'') 
position. After each period of prescribed flashing, the telltale must 
remain continuously illuminated as long as a malfunction exists and the 
ignition locking system is in the ``On'' (``Run'') position. This 
flashing and illumination sequence must be repeated each time the 
ignition locking system is placed in the ``On'' (``Run'') position 
until the situation causing the malfunction has been corrected . . .

V. Summary of MNA's Analyses

    MNA stated its belief that the subject noncompliance is 
inconsequential to motor vehicle safety for the following reasons:
    (A) MNA states that the malfunction indicator will illuminate no 
later than 160 seconds after the vehicle's ignition is switched on, and 
the car has traveled above 22 mph for at least 15 seconds.
    (B) MNA also states that if the TPMS fails to detect the wheel 
sensors, the TPMS will display on the TPMS pressures screen contained 
within the instrument cluster no value for the tire pressure, 
indicating that the status of the wheel sensor is unconfirmed.
    (C) MNA further stated that the primary function of the TPMS is not 
affected by the noncompliance and the vehicle will operate as intended. 
Adding, that the noncompliance is confined to one particular aspect of 
the functionality of an otherwise compliant TPMS malfunction indicator 
and that all other aspects of the low-pressure monitoring system 
functionality are fully compliant with the requirements of FMVSS No. 
138. Along with this argument, MNA also made mention that on April 8, 
2005, NHTSA published a rule where it states ``A TPMS malfunction does 
not itself represent a safety risk to vehicle occupants, and we expect 
that the chances of having a TPMS malfunction and a significantly 
under-inflated tire at the same time are unlikely.''
    (D) MNA says that NHTSA has previously granted petitions for 
Inconsequential Non-Compliances pertaining to FMVSS No. 138, Tire 
Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), in which the monitoring system would 
not illuminate in the manner required by FMVSS No. 138 due to a 
software malfunction.
    (E) MNA is not aware of any customer complaints, field 
communications, incidents or injuries related to this condition.
    MNA has additionally informed NHTSA that all unsold vehicles in 
MNA's custody and control will have a reprogramming of the TPMS 
Electronic Control Unit prior to sale.
    In summation, MNA believes that the described noncompliance of the 
subject vehicles is inconsequential to motor vehicle safety, and that 
its petition, to exempt MNA 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 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, any decision on 
this petition only applies to the subject vehicles that MNA no longer 
controlled at the time it determined that the noncompliance existed. 
However, any decision on this petition does not relieve vehicle 
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 MNA 
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.

Jeffrey Giuseppe,
Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2015-22569 Filed 9-4-15; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-59-P

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