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Report: 5 automakers to trial blockchain-based car ID in US

Honda Motor Co. Ltd. and four other major carmakers are set to trial a blockchain-based vehicle identification system in the U.S. next month, the Nikkei Asian Review reported Oct. 14, without identifying its source.

The Mobility Open Blockchain Initiative, an international consortium aiding such projects, developed a vehicle ID system that will allow drivers to automatically pay parking fees or highway tolls without using cash or cards, the newspaper said.

Cars will be individually assigned a digital ID that contains information such as ownership and service histories, the report said. For electric vehicles, expenses such as maintenance and rest stop snacks will be recorded by the system and paid when the vehicle is plugged in to charge.

Other partners in the trial include Renault SA, Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co.

The Nikkei also noted the auto industry's efforts to integrate digital currency in its mobility initiatives. The news outlet in May reported that Honda and GM launched a joint research project into smart grids that could financially reward electric-vehicle owners for feeding power from their car batteries into the grid during an outage.

Honda, Renault, BMW, GM and Ford did not immediately respond to S&P Global Market Intelligence's requests for comment.