Updates to ECE Regulation on Lighting Installation Adopted
In recent years, many of the updates to United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) Regulation No. 48 on the installation of lighting and light signalling devices have related to the automatic switching between daytime running lamps and dipped beam headlamps and the automatic switching of other lighting functions, e.g. automatic switching between dipped beam and main beam headlamps. However, as the fitment of automatic switching functions has become more widespread and the technology controlling this functionality has rapidly evolved, it has become apparent that some of the requirements currently specified in UN ECE Regulation No. 48 lack clarity, leading to differing interpretations of the requirements, and are not fully consistent in their application to different lamp switching functions.
To address this situation, the UN ECE Working Party on Lighting and Light Signalling (GRE) set up a specific Task Force; the Task Force on Headlamp Switching (TF HS), to review and revise the relevant requirements in UN ECE Regulation No. 48. This Task Force drafted an 07 Series of Amendments to ECE 48 to clarify the requirements applicable to daytime running lamps and to automatic switching, which included the introduction of new definitions for "switch ON" "switch OFF", "activate" and "deactivate".
The Task Force also proposed some additional amendments to ECE 48 to update and clarify the application of its other requirements, such as replacing the term "engine" with the term "propulsion system" wherever it occurs.
Finally, requirements to mandate the fitment of an emergency stop signal (ESS) to all motor vehicles were also included in this draft Series of Amendments. Emergency stop signal systems cause either the brake lamps or the rear direction indicators to flash when the vehicle is decelerating rapidly, e.g. in an emergency braking situation. The recently published new EU General Safety Regulation, (EU) No. 2019/2144, introduced a requirement for the mandatory fitment of emergency stop signals to all motor vehicles and this amendment to ECE 48 supports the future implementation of this requirement.
The draft 07 Series of Amendments to UN ECE Regulation No. 48 were adopted at the 180th session of the UN ECE World Forum for Harmonisation of Vehicle Regulations (WP.29) in March 2020 and have recently been allocated a provisional entry into force date of September 25, 2020. Official publication of the final version of ECE 48.07 is expected during September or October 2020.
With regard to introduction dates, the transitional provisions contained in the adopted draft specify that, from July 6, 2022, Contracting Parties shall not be obliged to accept ECE 48.06 type approvals that were issued after July 5, 2022, but must continue to accept ECE 48.06 type approvals issued before July 6, 2022 until July 6, 2024.