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U.S. Stalls $1M Italian Supercar Over Airbags: Are Regulations Too Strict?

SodaHead News 2011/08/11 13:59:44
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Now what are rappers going to drive?

Even as President Obama signed off on a historic pact to raise fuel economy standards for the nation's trucking fleet, federal safety regulators have put the kibosh on the sale of a new $1 million, 700-horsepower Italian supercar called the Huayra.

But according to CNN, carmaker Pagani wasn't bounced because of the vehicle's environmental impact. In fact, the car meets European emission standards and boasts reduced CO2 emissions and fuel consumption that makes it top among V12-powered exotic vehicles.

Believe it or not, the reason is because safety regulators rejected Pagani's application for an exemption from federal auto safety rules requiring child-safe "advanced" airbags. Yeah, child-safe airbags in a 12-cylinder carbon-titanium car built to zero to 60 in about 3.5 seconds.

Pagani said complying with the rules would cause "substantial economic hardship." The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration didn't buy the financial hardship angle and didn't think the company had made a serious effort to comply.

The NHTSA sometimes makes temporary exemptions from some safety rules for automakers who only sell a small number of cars and Pagani was trying to break into the U.S. market with the car, which it figured on selling five of in 2012.

The small independent automaker built and crash-tested the hand-made vehicles to meet safety standards in the U.S. and Europe and it asked for the exemption three years ago, but only got word of the NHTSA decision as it was preparing for the car's official unveiling in Los Angeles last week.

The official sale date for the vehicle in the U.S. has now been pushed to 2013 as engineers work on an advanced airbag system.
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  • Matilda... Greg 2011/08/12 08:51:26
    Matilda Walton
    YES. IF AN ADULT WANTS TO PURCHASE A CAR, THAT'S THEIR DECISION.

    BLESS YOU
  • dispatcher 2011/08/11 19:23:41
    No
    dispatcher
    +1
    Understandably the rules & laws are made for a reason but exceptions to the rules can be made for things like this. Looking at this vehicle one can clearly see this is not going to be the Sunday afternoon family drive to the beach essential. With only 5 cars being imported it seems that the exception can be made.
  • gstrahan 2011/08/11 19:19:01
    Yes
    gstrahan
    +2
    If you don't have any children, why are you required to pay extra for these features, even on regualar cars. If you have a need for those items you can shop for them and pay the cost. Anyway, is it any of the governments business anyay?
  • Beat Ma... gstrahan 2011/08/11 22:35:44
    Beat Magnum True Hero
    +1
    The reason is simple, your new car becomes someone's used car eventually.
  • gstrahan Beat Ma... 2011/08/11 22:51:53
    gstrahan
    +1
    If the used car doesn't have the features you need, don't buy it. If I live in the south and sell my car to someone in the north, he needs snow tires. Is that expense my responsibility as well? After all even though I didn't need them, they are a safety feature for his situation.
  • Greg Beat Ma... 2011/08/12 01:46:52
    Greg
    Not if you wreck it first.
  • brutusin~ Proud Apetheist 2011/08/11 19:14:36
    No
    brutusin~ Proud Apetheist
    +2
    They expect to only sell five and their bitching about a standard that is known about. Idiots. Well I guess it applies to their consumers as well.
  • Ruger brutusi... 2011/08/11 23:46:06
    Ruger
    +1
    And bitch about cost of putting them in,big deal raise cost of car a half million, more rappers will buy it then anyway. bitch cost inbig deal raise cost car rappers buy rapper
  • politicalsoldier 2011/08/11 19:09:24
    Yes
    politicalsoldier
    You have to ask?
  • Horace 2011/08/11 18:56:56
    No
    Horace
    +1
    Airbags are their for a reason, all the more reasonable to have them on a car which goes this fast, I don't see a problem with this.
  • Beat Ma... Horace 2011/08/11 22:36:34
    Beat Magnum True Hero
    Race cars do not have airbags.
  • Horace Beat Ma... 2011/08/12 02:58:50
    Horace
    Why not, do we not care if racers live?
  • Texas Johnny 2011/08/11 18:54:23
    Yes
    Texas Johnny
    +6
    This is an example of the government picking the winners and losers! Besides, at 200mph an air bag as big as Obama's ego couldn't save you! NASCAR stockers don't need airbags and they are safer then most cars out there!
  • SlimTheMan Texas J... 2011/08/11 21:43:30 (edited)
    SlimTheMan
    +1
    Actually they are safer then all cares on the road...
  • Texas J... SlimTheMan 2011/08/12 14:49:17
    Texas Johnny
    +1
    Point Taken> I am familiar with the basic build of one , but did not know that! WOW!
  • ɟʇʇoɔs 2011/08/11 18:44:48 (edited)
    Yes
    ɟʇʇoɔs
    +3
    It's not exactly a family car now is it? family car Pagani Zonda interior
  • jimrthy... ɟʇʇoɔs 2011/08/11 19:13:21
    jimrthy BN-0
    That really depends on the family. I have a buddy with a car along those lines (not as extreme, but similar). His daughter has always loved going for rides with him.
  • ɟʇʇoɔs jimrthy... 2011/08/15 20:25:34
    ɟʇʇoɔs
    +1
    Well what I meant was, it is not a car specifically designed to be a family car in the way a Dodge minivan or a sedan is... The Zonda is meant to be fast, and take corners and as light as possible...

    I have a Civic which I drive on the road which has no airbags or A/C...
  • jimrthy... ɟʇʇoɔs 2011/08/19 18:06:06
    jimrthy BN-0
    +1
    That makes total sense.
  • Dum Luk 2011/08/11 18:32:20
    Yes
    Dum Luk
    +3
    If I bought this car and I had young children, the messy little buggers wouldn't be allowed near the thing.
  • D C 2011/08/11 18:30:42
    No
    D C
    +2
    Not too strict, but they should make an exception for super cars.
  • jimrthy... D C 2011/08/11 19:14:12
    jimrthy BN-0
    +1
    The federal government shouldn't be concerned with these sorts of rules in the first place.

    This is a perfect example of meddling where they do not belong.
  • Kaleoku... jimrthy... 2011/08/11 22:39:18
    Kaleokualoha
    The feds should not set safety standards at all?
  • Turings... Kaleoku... 2011/08/12 17:17:24
    TuringsChild
    +1
    Set all the standards you want. Part of govt's JOB is setting standards. But enforcement is not govt's place when dealing with a Sovereign People. Let the PEOPLE decide which standards apply to their circumstance.
  • Kaleoku... Turings... 2011/08/12 19:12:35
    Kaleokualoha
    If it is discretionary, then it is only a guide instead of a standard. Standards are mandatory.
  • Turings... Kaleoku... 2011/08/12 19:33:03
    TuringsChild
    +1
    A pound is a pound. Try to sell 15 oz as a pound and you will get a reputation as a thief and you will lose your business. Govt sets standards so we KNOW what we're getting. It has no right or obligation to enforce anything on a Sovereign People.
  • Kaleoku... Turings... 2011/08/12 19:36:06
    Kaleokualoha
    By "sovereign people" do you mean American citizens? Are you saying the feds have "no right or obligation" to enforce the law? That would be anarchy.
  • Turings... Kaleoku... 2011/08/12 19:46:43
    TuringsChild
    Yes, American Citizens are sovereign over their govt. No, govt may enforce the law, but I don't see why standards should BE law. Govt *has* its place, but it has a hard time *remembering* its place.
  • jimrthy... Turings... 2011/08/19 18:15:01
    jimrthy BN-0
    +1
    By its nature, government will *never* stay in its place.

    It never has; it never will. It gives people power, and power corrupts. It is an inevitable, unchangeable truth.

    It *may* be a necessary evil. But never doubt that it *is* evil. It should be starved, chained up, hidden in the basement, and beaten regularly.
  • Turings... jimrthy... 2011/08/19 19:54:52
    TuringsChild
    SO true!
  • jimrthy... Turings... 2011/08/22 19:13:28
    jimrthy BN-0
    Thanks. Glad *someone* agrees :-)
  • jimrthy... Kaleoku... 2011/08/19 18:25:32
    jimrthy BN-0
    +1
    I'll say it: no, the feds don't have any "right or obligation" to enforce anything. Maybe back when they were at least paying lip service to the Constitution, they might have had at least some vague sort of valid pretext to that sort of "right or obligation." Those days are long gone, and our ancestors didn't have any right or authority to enter into a contractual agreement like that in our names.

    No person has any moral authority to initiate the use of force on any other. Nor do any two people. Or a dozen, a thousand, or 300 million.

    You have the right to defend yourself, the people around you, and your property. You have absolutely no right to tell anyone else what to do, as long as it does not endanger you or yours.

    That is the cold, harsh truth of reality. Yes it *is* anarchy. Most people aren't grown-up enough to deal with these facts. That's why they pretend "government" is real, to protect them from themselves and each other. Even though it inevitably winds up hanging chains like the ones in this article around their necks.
  • jimrthy... Kaleoku... 2011/08/19 18:09:32
    jimrthy BN-0
    +1
    Not for something like this.

    Their purposes are to keep the States from going to war with each other, preserve our freedom, and provide a unified front to the rest of the world.

    I can almost see supporting an Amendment that would allow them to do what they already are with the EPA--try to protect everything from a giant tragedy of the commons. But they're already mishandling that so badly that it seems like a horrible idea.
  • cheshirewayne 2011/08/11 18:29:42
    No
    cheshirewayne
    rules are rules for everyone.
  • ɟʇʇoɔs cheshir... 2011/08/11 18:46:36
    ɟʇʇoɔs
    +3
    It's a two seater, purpose built, one step away from a race car... does that REALLY need child safe airbags? I really don't believe that people who are going to buy that car have small children or children at all
  • jimrthy... cheshir... 2011/08/11 19:11:48
    jimrthy BN-0
    +4
    Rules that are wrong need to go away. This is a perfect example of one that is not worth obeying.
  • Beat Ma... cheshir... 2011/08/11 22:39:11
    Beat Magnum True Hero
    It's a street legal Le Mans prototype. It holds the production lap record at Nürburgring (the really long old school version of the track). They are planning on selling five (as in the number of fingers you have) in the USA. No child would even be allowed to look at this car without adult supervision, much less ride in it.
  • Turings... cheshir... 2011/08/22 19:36:10
    TuringsChild
    But only in theory. And that's a problem.
  • Walks_on_Clouds 2011/08/11 18:26:23
    Yes
    Walks_on_Clouds
    +2
    All this safety crap wasn't around when I was small and I'm still here. I mean, there's been no damage over all those accidenc andiin ,,, thesl iutens to four when i funny bees, huh?
  • thy-lady-x 2011/08/11 18:22:01 (edited)
    Yes
    thy-lady-x
    +4
    Pleeease, the youngest person that I can see ever being in that car would be the rich bastard who bought it's hot 18 year old "girl friend" This isn't a car that you take the kids to the zoo in.

    If the NHTSA has been known to wave the child safety rules for other cars that are expected to only sell a few, then the only reason I can see them turning Pagani down would be if Ferrari and/or Lamborghini paid the department off to deny the waiver because they don't want the competition in the US

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