26 Feb 2014

Safety system to be mandatory

6:10 pm on 26 February 2014

The Government says electronic stability control will become a mandatory feature for new and used cars and trucks imported into New Zealand.

ESC is a crash prevention system that controls the braking of each wheel to correct a car if it is skidding out of control.

The Government's proposed timetable for implementation of the new rules covers new passenger cars from 1 July next year, up until January 2020 for used passenger cars.

Associate Transport Minister Michael Woodhouse says cars already on the road without it will remain.

"No problem for them or for those who are importing vintage cars which pre-date the introduction of ESC. We want to make sure that there's no unnecessary concern from vintage car owners or dealers."

Mr Woodhouse says a majority of new cars have the feature as standard and mandating this technology will improve road safety.