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Bye-bye PRNDL?

Today's NYTimes says BMW, with the support of the American Automobile 
Manufacturers Assn and Assn of Import Automobile Manufacturers, has 
petitioned the NHTSA to change Vehicle Standard 102, which stipulates that 
center console or  steering column mounted automatic shifters must have the 
PRNDL (Park/Reverse/Neutral/Drive/Low) pattern.  BMW wants to free up the 
center console for other bells and whistles like cell fones and navigation 
system, and says in its petition that the electronic technology exists to 
use smaller, lighter push buttons, key pads or rotary displays.

Shaun Mullen
Wilmington, DE