Automakers are resisting efforts to keep AM radio in new models, an industry group telling a congressional committee Tuesday that it’s unnecessary, the Detroit News reported.
A representative of the Alliance for Automotive Innovation told a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee in a hearing on a bill that would require AM radio as standard in new vehicles that other technology suffices when it comes to emergency alerts to the public.
The bipartisan bill would direct the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to issue a rule making AM a required feature in newly produced vehicles at no extra cost to consumers.
Alliance Vice President for Safety Policy Scott Schmidt told the subcommittee that the existing federal Integrated Public Alert and Warning System can issue emergency alerts, the Detroit News report said. Schmidt said the system could be updated and that AM’s audience is in decline.
Schmidt said the auto industry is committed to making public emergency alerts available to vehicle occupants for free, regardless of the technology, and that mandating AM could stifle innovation, the paper reported.
Ford recently reversed a decision to eliminate AM from its new noncommercial models after CEO Jim Farley discussed the issue with government policy leaders.
Many automakers have eliminated AM in their electric-vehicle lineups because it can cause interference in EVs, though some have also removed it from gas-powered models.