The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has announced that as of next year, all car and motorcycle manufacturers will have to supply recall information through an online vehicle identification number (VIN) search.
This will allow consumers to quickly find information on the recall history of their vehicle by simply typing the VIN number into an online database. Over 240 million car and truck owners in America will be able to find out if their vehicle is under recall, or if it was previously recalled and fixed.
“Every day NHTSA is working for the American consumer to ensure that automakers and motorcycle manufacturers address safety defects and non-compliances, and that they also recall affected vehicles in a timely manner,” said NHTSA Administrator David Strickland.
The search feature will be available on NHTSA’s website (safecar.gov) and is already available on some automaker’s sites, though the brands that don’t comply are required to by August of 2014.
In addition to mandating VIN searches, NHTSA must now be informed about exactly what type of engine and crash avoidance tech is being fitted into each manufacturer’s vehicle, to help the agency better identify defect trends in those powertrains and technologies. A small tweak has also come to the recall process which now requires manufacturers to notify customers of a recall within 60 days of notifying NHTSA that a recall is occurring.