increase, enabling the current 17-character system to continue for another 30 years and possibly
The final rule published today differs very little from the notice of proposed rulemaking
(NPRM) published on October 2, 2007.1 The differences are as follows.
The date and conditions under which this rule becomes effective have been changed in response to comments that indicated a need for prompt implementation of this rule.
While this rule now makes clear that Low Speed Vehicles (LSVs) require a VIN, LSVs have been dropped from the list of vehicles that would require, and be limited to the use of an alphabetic character in position 7 of the VIN. This was done in response to comments noting that the need for only an alphabetic character in position 7 applies mainly to passenger cars and multipurpose passenger vehicles and trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating of 4536 kg (10,000 lb) or less, not all other vehicles covered by 49 Part 565, such as trailers and low speed vehicles. Comments received in response to the NPRM generally supported the proposed changes
to Part 565. Two commenters sought clarification as to how the new rule would apply to trailers.
A small number of the comments recommended changes to what was proposed. These
comments, however, reflected a less than complete understanding of the proposed changes and,
in one case, the purpose of our proposal in helping to sustain the current 17-character VIN
system over the next 30 years.
Many of the comments raised issues that were either not specifically addressed in the
NPRM or involved suggested uses of the VIN system that are outside the scope of either
NHTSA’s authority or the purpose and scope of the VIN system. For these reasons, changes to
Part 565 suggested by the comments have not been made. A common suggestion of this type