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ESC Compliance Deadline Takes Effect for Aftermarket Modifications
In 2007, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 126 requiring all motor vehicles weighing 10,000 lbs. or less to have an electronic stability control (ESC) system. The rule was phased-in over several years, with ESCs being included as standard equipment on all new vehicles as of September 1, 2011. SEMA secured a one-year exemption for the aftermarket, which expired September 1, 2012. It is now illegal to take a vehicle out-of-compliance with FMVSS No. 126 when the vehicle is modified.
SEMA’s Suspension Task Force, working with SEMA Vehicle Technology’s Vehicle Dynamics Program (VDP) and SEMA-member companies, has made great strides over the past five years in understanding how aftermarket vehicle modifications (suspension, brakes, wheels, tires, steering, etc.) may interact with ESC systems. Each project is tailored to the interested SEMA-member company's needs and objectives. Efforts range from physical testing to Hardware-In-the-Loop (HIL) simulation to pure vehicle dynamics simulation. Generally, a combination of approaches is tailored to meet the SEMA company's goals.