For many years, the rear view backup camera was a feature only found on luxury cars, but now it’s becoming more commonplace on new cars and trucks. And soon it will be standard equipment on nearly every one of them…  

In a ruling from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Department of Transportation- all new vehicles under 10,000 pounds will require some sort of rear-vision technology by May 2018.

As a safety measure, the agency expects the cameras will save lives as well as lower the number of injuries from back over accidents. The mandate could also be viewed as a convenience measure, and should help reduce minor accidents when parking or navigating tight areas.

The guidelines require a “field of view” of at least 10 feet by 20 feet-and will provide specifications on display size and how quickly the system activates. 

The obvious issue of cost is not lost on advocates of the new rule, but NHTSA claims that by 2018, a backup camera and display system will cost under $150 to install. Experts say that price shouldn’t harm manufacturers’ total sales numbers.

No word yet on whether other modern safety technologies will get federal mandates in the future, but it’s hard to deny the effectiveness of features like Blind Spot Monitoring and Lane Departure Warning systems. And that’s it for this week’s Motor News.