The USDOT and the Crash Avoidance Metrics Partnership-Vehicle Safety Communications 2 (CAMP-VSC2) Consortium (Ford, GM, Honda, Mercedes, and Toyota) initiated, in December 2006, a three-year collaborative effort in the area of wireless-based safety applications under the Vehicle Safety Communications-Applications (VSC-A) Project. The VSC-A Project developed and tested communications-based vehicle safety systems to determine if Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC) at 5.9 GHz, in combination with vehicle positioning, would improve upon autonomous vehicle-based safety systems and/or enable new communications-based safety applications. The project addressed the following objectives: Assess how previously identified crash-imminent safety scenarios in autonomous systems could be addressed and improved by DSRC+Positioning systemsDefine a set of DSRC+Positioning based vehicle safety applications and application specifications including minimum system performance requirementsDevelop scalable, common vehicle safety communication architecture, protocols, and messaging framework (interfaces) necessary to achieve interoperability and cohesiveness among different vehicle manufacturers. Standardize this messaging framework and the communication protocols (including message sets) to facilitate future deployment.Develop requirements for accurate and affordable vehicle positioning technology needed, in conjunction with the 5.9 GHz DSRC, to support most of the safety applications with high-potential benefitsDevelop and verify a set of objective test procedures for the vehicle safety communications applicationsIn this paper, we summarize the work that took place in the VSC-A Project in the areas of system design and objective testing. We first introduce the VSC-A system framework. We then list the crash imminent scenarios addressed by the VSC-A Project and the safety applications selected to potentially address them. Next we describe the VSC-A test bed system development. This test bed was ultimately used to verify Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) communication interoperability between Ford, GM, Honda, Mercedes-Benz, and Toyota vehicles. Public demonstrations of V2V interoperability were held in New York City at the 2008 Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) World Congress. The test bed also served to validate the system and minimum performance specifications that were developed as part of this project. We discuss one of the most important achievements of the project in the communication area, i.e., implementation, testing, verification, and standardization of a safety message that supports all of the VSC-A safety applications. The result is the Basic Safety Message (BSM) as defined in the SAE J2735 Message Set Dictionary standard. Details of the objective test procedures are presented next and are followed by a summary of the performed test scenarios (test descriptions, speeds, number of runs for each test, type of test, etc.) with the corresponding objective testing results. We conclude the paper with a section summarizing the accomplishments of the project and also identify potential next steps and recommendations based on the technical results and engineering experience gained throughout the execution of the VSC-A Project.