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Nissan North America, Inc., Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Nissan Titan

Nissan North America, Inc., Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance

Jeffrey M. Giuseppe
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
23 June 2017


[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 120 (Friday, June 23, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 28737-28739]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-13084]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

[Docket No. NHTSA-2017-0041; Notice 1]


Nissan 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: Nissan North America, Inc. (Nissan), has determined that 
certain model year (MY) 2016-2017 Nissan Titan Crew Cab motor vehicles 
do not fully comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 
No. 201, Occupant Protection in Interior Impact. Nissan filed a 
noncompliance report dated April 24, 2017. Nissan also petitioned NHTSA 
on May 16, 2017, for a decision that the subject noncompliance is 
inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety.

DATES: The closing date for comments on the petition is July 24, 2017.

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 in the title 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 Delivery: 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 https://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 comments you have submitted by mail were 
received, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard with the 
comments. Note that all comments received will be posted without change 
to https://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information 
provided.
    All comments and supporting materials received before the close of 
business on the closing date indicated above will be filed in the 
docket and will be considered. All comments and supporting materials 
received after the closing date will also be filed and will be 
considered to the fullest extent possible.
    When the petition is granted or denied, notice of the decision will 
also be published in the Federal Register pursuant to the authority 
indicated at the end of this notice.
    All comments, background documentation, and supporting materials 
submitted to the docket may be viewed by anyone at the address and 
times given above. The documents may also be viewed on the Internet at 
https://www.regulations.gov by following the online instructions for 
accessing the dockets. The docket ID number for this petition is shown 
in the heading of this notice.
    DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement is available for review in a 
Federal Register notice published on April 11, 2000, (65 FR 19477-78).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 
    I. Overview: Nissan North America, Inc. (Nissan), has determined 
that certain model year (MY) 2016-2017 Nissan Titan Crew Cab motor 
vehicles

[[Page 28738]]

do not fully comply with paragraphs S7 and S10.4(b)(2) of FMVSS No. 
201, Occupant Protection in Interior Impact. Nissan filed a 
noncompliance report dated April 24, 2017, pursuant to 49 CFR part 573, 
Defect and Noncompliance Responsibility and Reports. Nissan also 
petitioned NHTSA on May 16, 2017, pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 30118(d) and 
30120(h) and 49 CFR part 556, for an exemption from the notification 
and remedy requirements of 49 U.S.C. Chapter 301 on the basis that this 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety.
    This notice of receipt of Nissan'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: Approximately 44,264 MY 2016-2017 Nissan 
Titan Crew Cab motor vehicles, manufactured between August 7, 2015, and 
February 24, 2017, are potentially involved.
    III. Noncompliance: During an FMVSS No. 201 test performed by NHTSA 
and conducted at MGA Research Corporation (MGA) on January 12, 2017, 
the 2017 Nissan Titan Crew Cab NHTSA test vehicle, failed the HIC(d) 
value test and therefore did not meet the requirements of paragraphs S7 
and S10.4(b)(2) of FMVSS No. 201. Specifically, NHTSA's test vehicle 
had a HIC(d) value of 1,007.9, exceeding the value permitted by the 
standard, which states that it should not exceed 1,000.
    IV. Rule Text: Paragraph S7 of FMVSS No. 201 states in pertinent 
part:

    S7 Performance Criterion. The HIC(d) shall not exceed 1000 when 
calculated in accordance with the following formula:
[GRAPHIC] [TIFF OMITTED] TN23JN17.000


Where the term a is the resultant head acceleration expressed as a 
multiple of g (the acceleration of gravity), and t1 and t2 are any 
two points in time during the impact which are separated by not more 
than a 36 millisecond time interval. . .

    Paragraphs S10.4(b)(2) of FMVSS No. 201 states in pertinent part:

S10.4 Rearmost pillar targets.
(b) Target RP2. . .
    (2) If a seat belt anchorage is located on the pillar, Target 
RP2 is any point on the anchorage. . .

    V. Summary of Nissan's Petition: Nissan described the subject 
noncompliance and stated its belief that the noncompliance is 
inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety.
    In support of its petition, Nissan submitted the following 
reasoning:
    1. In the subject vehicles, the HIC(d) value deviation for target 
RP2 observed in the MGA test is inconsequential because it is 
impossible for an occupant's head to strike this target at the same 
angle as the MGA test.
    (a) When attempting to replicate the MGA test condition with an 
AM50 Hybrid III dummy (AM50 ATD), the AM50 ATD's head cannot contact 
the RP2 compliance test impact point when the rear seat is in the 
design position. It is not possible for the AM50 ATD to contact the RP2 
target in the same head form orientation as used in the FMVSS No. 201U 
compliance test. This lack of contact is caused by interference between 
the AM50 and the seat back of the second row seats. Due to this 
interference, the AM50 ATD's head is 330 mm forward of the RP2 target.
    (b) When attempting to replicate the MGA test condition with an 
AM50 Hybrid III dummy (AM50 ATD), the AM50 ATD's head cannot contact 
the RP2 compliance test impact point when the rear seat is in the 
folded position. It is not possible for the AM50 ATD to contact the RP2 
target in the same head form orientation as used in the FMVSS No. 201U 
compliance test. This lack of contact is caused by interference between 
the AM50 ATD and the back-panel trim. Due to this interference, the 
AM50 ATD's head is 190 mm forward of the RP2 target.
    2. As previously demonstrated in section 1, it is not possible for 
the AM50 ATD to contact the D-Ring anchor cap in the same head form 
orientation as used in the MGA test. It was then attempted to replicate 
any possible real world contact of the AM50 Hybrid III dummy's head 
(AM50 ATD) and the rear pillar d-ring anchor cap. A small range exists 
where it is possible for the head of the AM50 ATD to contact the rear 
seat belt d-ring anchor cap albeit in a manner different than the 
compliance test. This range is bounded on one end by the AM50 contact 
with either the rear seat when in the design position or the rear trim 
when the seat is in the folded position.
    (a) Interference between the AM50 ATD and the back of the front 
seat limits the horizontal approach angle to thirty-four degrees 
(34[deg]). A test conducted in support of this petition with a 
horizontal approach angle of 34[ordm] and a vertical approach angle of 
0[ordm] at a velocity of 24.5 kph resulted in a HIC(d) value of 646.2.
    (b) With the rear seat in the folded position, in order for the 
AM50 ATD's head to contact the RP2 target, a horizontal approach angle 
of seventy-one degrees (71[ordm]) would be required; the resultant 
deceleration, and thus HIC(d) value, would be lower than 1,007.9 due to 
head contact with the edge of the D-ring bolt trip cap and off-axis 
loading of the D-Ring bolt. A test conducted in support of this 
petition with a horizontal approach angle of 71[ordm] and vertical 
approach angle of 0[ordm] at a velocity of 24.6 kph resulted in a 
HIC(d) value of 891.7.
    (c) With the rear seat in the design position, in order for the 
AM50 ATD's head to contact the RP2 target a horizontal approach angle 
of sixty-five degrees (65[ordm]) would be required, with the resultant 
HIC(d) similar to the above, and well below the regulatory threshold.
    3. In addition to the above, Nissan is aware of four crash tests 
that demonstrate the test dummy's head does not contact the RP2 target 
during the crash event:
    (a) In the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Side Impact 
Moving Deformable Barrier (MDB) Test conducted at a ninety-degree 
(90[ordm]) side impact at 50 kph the test dummy head does not contact 
FMVSS No. 201U S10.4(b)(2) target RP2.
    (b) In the New Car Assessment Program (NCAP) Side Impact Moving 
Deformable Barrier Test conducted at 61.9 kph, the test dummy head does 
not contact FMVSS No. 201U S10.4(b)(2) target RP2.
    (c) In a frontal impact sled test conducted as part of an internal 
Nissan evaluation, the test dummy's head, in a fully rearward position, 
does not contact the RP2 target.
    (d) In a second row 18 mph side impact rigid pole test conducted as 
part of an internal evaluation, the test dummy's head does not contact 
the RP2 target.
    Nissan concluded by expressing the belief that the subject 
noncompliance is inconsequential as it relates to motor vehicle safety, 
and that its petition to be exempted from providing notification of the 
noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30118, and a remedy for the 
noncompliance, as required by 49 U.S.C. 30120, should be granted.
    To view Nissan's petition analyses and any supplemental information 
in its entirety you can visit https://www.regulations.gov by following 
the online instructions for accessing the dockets and by using the 
docket ID number for this petition shown in the heading of this notice.
    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

[[Page 28739]]

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 Nissan 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 Nissan 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 M. Giuseppe,
Director, Office of Vehicle Safety Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2017-13084 Filed 6-22-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-59-P

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