Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) enables communication and real-time information sharing between vehicles (V2V) and roadside infrastructure (V2I) as well as to pedestrian and cyclists via wireless consumer devices. The development of C-ITS has the potential to significantly improve road safety in Australia and reduce congestion on our roads to make the daily commute a safer and easier experience.

Many brands have already indicated that they will release vehicles fitted with C-ITS in the next few years in both Europe and the United States. It is likely that FCAI member brands will also introduce vehicles fitted with C-ITS in the near future.

Car brands are investing significantly in these technology advances so that in the future cars will be safer and more environmentally friendly.

To effectively introduce more connected vehicles into Australia, it is vital that governments and industry work together to ensure that the infrastructure and systems that support the vehicles and the communications network are set up and maintained. This includes spectrum allocation. 

There are many government agencies involved with C-ITS and the FCAI will engage with:

  • Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), who manage the spectrum allocation and licensing for radiofrequency transmitters/receivers.
  • Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development (DIRD), who regulate vehicle standards. 
  • Austroads, the association/state government road authorities who will set the infrastructure standards and implement roadside infrastructure for vehicle to infrastructure (V2I) communications.

For more information about the Guiding Principles for C-ITS, see this publication.

Personal imports

As the standard of new cars is crucial to road safety, the Motor Vehicle Standards Act is an important piece of legislation, as it sets the minimum safety and environmental standards for vehicles to enter the market. Calls for Australia to allow the personal importation of motor vehicles from other countries will have a detrimental effect on the great safety and other benefits that can be achieved from connected cars.

Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) operate on particular bandwidths, which differ between countries. Introducing vehicles made for another countries bandwidth and transport systems will not work and may even cause significant interruptions in our local systems. The Government must appropriately consider this effect and the multitude of negative effects personal imports could bring to the country.