Worried About The Proposed Tariffs On Imported Cars? Here's What You Can Do About It

Mazda’s one automaker that could be deeply impacted by the 25 percent tariff
Mazda’s one automaker that could be deeply impacted by the 25 percent tariff
Photo: Mazda

You may’ve heard about President Donald Trump’s proposed 25 percent tariff on all vehicles imported to the U.S. That’s all imported vehicles. But did you know Trump’s Commerce Department is accepting comment right now on the proposal? Well, it sure is, and you have until June 22 to offer a word on it.


If you need a quick refresher, the idea of a 25 percent tariff emerged late last month, when Trump ordered an investigation into whether importing vehicles into the U.S. could threaten national security. (Seriously.)

That investigation is moving along, and it covers everything—cars, SUVs, vans, light trucks, automotive parts. The tariff could jack up car prices and wreak havoc on Canada’s auto industry.

And so the Commerce Department, per federal law, is asking anyone interested in providing input on the proposal. That includes any written comments, data, analyses, or “other information pertinent to the investigation to the Department of Commerce” by June 22.

Here’s how, via the Regulations.gov:

All written submissions must be in English and must be addressed to Section 232 Automobile and Automotive Parts Imports Investigation, and filed through the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. To submit comments via www.regulations.gov, enter docket number DOC-2018-0002 on the home page and click “search.” The site will provide a search results page listing all documents associated with this docket. Find a reference to this notice and click on the link entitled “Comment Now!” (For further information on using www.regulations.gov, please consult the resources provided on the website by clicking on “How to Use This Site” on the left side of the home page). For alternatives to on-line submissions, please contact Sahra Park-Su at (202) 482-2811.



The www.regulations.gov website allows users to provide comments by filling in a “Type Comment” field, or by attaching a document using an “Upload File” field. The Department prefers that comments be provided in an attached document. The Department prefers submissions in Microsoft Word (.doc) or Adobe Acrobat (.pdf). If the submission is in an application other than those two, please indicate the name of the application in the “Type Comment” field. Please do not attach separate cover letters to electronic submissions; rather, include any information that might appear in a cover letter in the comments themselves. Similarly, to the extent possible please include any exhibits, annexes, or other attachments in the same file as part of the submission itself rather than in separate files.


Comments will be made available for public inspection through the online docket for the proposed tariff.

There’s more. As stipulated under federal law, there must be public hearings held over the proposed tariff. The Regulations.gov website says those are scheduled July 18-19, from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. each day, at the Department of Commerce’s auditorium at 1401 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20230. So, if you’re willing, there’s plenty of time allotted to comment in person.


Anyone interested in participating at the public hearings, read on. You must submit a written request to the commerce department by June 22, the website says.

The request to appear must include a summary of the expected testimony, and may also be accompanied by additional material. Remarks at the hearing may be limited to five minutes to allow for possible questions from U.S. government representatives.

All submissions must be in English and sent electronically via www.regulations.gov. To submit a request to appear at the hearing via www.regulations.gov, enter docket number DOC-2018-0002. In the “Type Comment” field, include name, address, email address, and telephone number of the person presenting the testimony, as well as the organization or company that they represent. Attach a summary of the testimony, and pre-hearing submission if provided, by using the “Upload File” field. The file name should include the name of the person who will be presenting the testimony.


If you’re looking to make public remarks, there’s more info on what that entails here. And reach out if you plan on showing up that day. We’re planning to drop by and cover the proceedings.

Senior Reporter, Jalopnik/Special Projects Desk


“All submissions must be in English and sent electronically via www.regulations.gov.

Well, they’d have to pardon my French then.