Trade group urges Trump to revise auto emissions rules

Thu Nov 10, 2016 2:19pm EST
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By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A major auto trade group on Thursday urged President-elect Donald Trump's transition team to revise fuel efficiency mandates that could cost them billions of dollars and called for a full-scale review of the Obama administration's autonomous vehicle policies.

In an eight-page letter Thursday to Trump's transition team made public and reported earlier by Reuters, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, which presents major automakers including General Motors Co, Ford Motor Co and Toyota Motor Corp, urged the incoming Trump White House to find "a pathway forward" on setting final fuel efficiency standards through 2025, calling on the next administration to "harmonize and adjust" the rules.

The letter also urges Trump to create a presidential advisory committee to "coordinate auto sector regulators" and said the panel could suggest a new approach to auto regulations.

Automakers told Trump's team in the letter "technology and change are swamping the regulatory capacity to manage our emerging reality. Reform is imperative."

Major automakers have raised concerns about the Obama administration's ambitious targets for cutting vehicle greenhouse gas emissions through 2025, arguing low gasoline prices and weak demand for electric vehicles may require significant revisions to the rules.

The automakers' letter urges the Trump administration to conduct a "comprehensive regulatory review" of all regulations and actions since Sept. 1, including the Obama administration's new guidance on self-driving vehicles.

In September, the Obama administration unveiled guidance asking automakers to voluntarily submit details of self-driving vehicle systems in a 15 point "safety assessment."

The Obama administration said it was considering seeking the power to review and approve technology for self-driving cars before they hit the road.   Continued...

Automobiles are shown for sale at a car dealership in Carlsbad, California, U.S. May 2, 2016.  REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo