Brussels, Belgium – The European Commission (EC) has announced new proposals for mandatory vehicle safety systems that will be required on all new vehicles. The proposals include electronic stability control and low-rolling-resistance tires on cars by 2012, and advanced emergency braking systems and lane departure warning systems on trucks and other heavy vehicles as of 2013.

The proposal will also eliminate more than 150 existing directives, and replace them with one single regulation which is directly applicable in the European Union.

“We are simplifying the legislation,” said Günter Verheugen, EC Vice-President responsible for enterprise and industry. “We are improving road safety. We are promoting fuel efficiency. We are presenting a modern, integrated policy approach beneficiary for citizens, for the environment and the industry.”

The new proposals will require the following safety requirements:

  • Mandatory electronic stability control (ESC) for new cars and commercial vehicles to be phased in from 2012, with all new cars being equipped by 2014.
  • Advanced emergency braking on large vehicles, employing sensors to alert the driver when a vehicle is too close in front and, in certain situations, applying emergency braking to prevent or reduce the consequences of a collision, from 2013. Lane Departure Warning systems would also be required on large vehicles, to assist drivers by warning them when the vehicle is in danger of unintentionally leaving the lane, mainly due to lack of driver attention.
  • Brake Assist Systems on passenger vehicles from 2009; the systems can considerably reduce the stopping distance of a vehicle in an emergency situation.
  • Low rolling resistance tires to be obligatory from 2012, leading to lower fuel consumption by reducing the resistance to motion that occurs when the tire rolls. Explicit safety requirements and new standards on tire noise would also be introduced.
  • Tire pressure monitoring systems to be obligatory from 2012.

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