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Another Shot Across the Internal Combustion Engine Bow

  • In April 2023, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) voted to ban the sale of medium and heavy-duty diesel-powered vehicles in the state starting in 2036. As the MRF shared last year, the implications of this move by CARB are enormous. With California being the largest market for vehicles in the country, manufacturers are being forced to make decisions on the products they offer. 

    It now appears that the first domino may have fallen. In a recent memo to dealers, the Ford Motor Company announced the following policy for California, “Beginning January 1, 2024, Ford will not allow or recognize sales or delivery of 2025 Model Year diesel Medium Duty (F-650/F-750) units to customers who register their vehicles in the state.” You read that correctly. That is eleven years in advance of the directive from CARB that Ford is now forbidding its dealers from selling diesel-powered F-650/F-750 in the largest state in the Union. 

    This action by Ford may be the first in what will be a growing list of manufacturers who bend to the will of California regulators. Why can California do this? The Clean Air Act allows California to seek a waiver of the preemption that prohibits states from enacting emission standards for new motor vehicles. 

    We know that officials in California will not stop here. They already have banned the sale of gas-powered golf carts, lawnmowers, chainsaws, and generators. To make matters worse, more than a dozen other states link their emissions laws to California standards. That means that in some cases, 40% of vehicles on the road are subject to California standards regardless of whether the vehicle is registered in California.

    The writing is on the wall. If we want to protect motorcycles and the internal combustion engines that power them, we must act now. 

    Recently the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1435 which would amend the Clean Air Act to prevent a ban on the sale of internal combustion engines (ICE), effectively trumping any state law that outlaws their sale.

    The Senate now needs to act on its version of the bill. If you haven’t already, click here and ask your Senators to support S.2090 - Preserving Choice in Vehicle Purchases Act of 2023. It may be the only way to stop the war on ICE that is being waged in the Golden State.

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