First spotted by Motor1, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has introduced a new rule that would allow the transaction of a vehicle between private parties to use a digital odometer verification. This was the only non-digitized aspect of ownership transfer that had yet to be given a paperless system.
The recent ruling will also restrict odometer verification for vehicles up to 20 years old and beginning with models made in 2010. This is to ensure the health and longevity of the average American car. Before this, the rule was only for vehicles 10 years or younger, but a recent study had shown that the average car is 12 years old.
The primary motivation for this change wasn't out of convenience or modernization but as a cost-saving measure.
"Since the agency believes that electronic disclosure will be less costly than paper disclosures, even a minor cost savings per disclosure could lead to large societal savings."
While primarily monetary, the NHTSA also remarks on the added security that the system would have. Electronic records are harder for fake, helping reduce the potential for vehicle fraud.
It's not said when the new rules will go into effect, only listing that it will start 90 days after entering the federal registry. Even so, it'll be even longer before the DMV implements a digital system for submitting title transactions.
All the same, It's good that they're upgrading their system.