• Apr 22nd 2008 at 7:03AM
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The Bush camp hasn't exactly been extolled for its green virtue over the past seven years, but the administration is trying to make up for lost time by announcing 2011-2015 CAFE targets on Earth Day. Department of Transportation Secretary Mary Peters is scheduled to announce the targets, which are expected to be differentiated by vehicle size, by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Automakers already know they have to get to 35 mpg by 2020, so the 2011-2015 targets should be somewhere between the magic number and today's 27.5 mpg for cars and 22.5 mpg for trucks.
While news of 2011-2015 fuel economy standards isn't exactly the stuff that makes blood boil, today's announcement will help shape what vehicles you'll be able to buy in the years ahead. Something tells us the horsepower war is almost over.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req.]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'm gonna rent a car from Hertz today that shows how much I feel for Earth Day. Is a Hummer H2 good enough or do I need something bigger? :P
        • 7 Years Ago
        An 8.1L 3/4 Ton Suburban would be the most ideal vehicle, but I guess the Hummer would be satisfactory.
      • 7 Years Ago
      As it's earth day, do we also get to call out the countries that signed but failed the Kyoto Agreement as well?
        • 7 Years Ago
        Canada would be one. We have been so busy turning Northern Alberta into moonscape to extract oil. Leaving behind a wasteland that nobody has any real plan on how to clean up. Not to mention the C02 emissions from the ridiculous amount of natural gas being burned to extract this oil. But then again there is the US who never bothered to sign and is the one buying all that oil. So I guess there is lots of blame to go around.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Its easier to just say "EU" than listing them :P
      Mike H.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Gee whiz. Why not raise them to 100 mpg? Heck, why not 150 mpg?
      • 7 Years Ago
      F*ck Earth Day. I'm doing a massive burnout to show my Earth Day pride.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I see more V6 Mustangs running around here than GT's, Shelbys, etc.

      Not everyone wants a fire breather. The new Challenger and Camaro SHOULD have a V6 option. It would be foolish not to.

      A small displacement V6 with a 6 speed auto would be the ticket, I guess. Gotta have torque for the stoplight race-to-work crowd. I would prefer a naturally aspirated 4 cylinder making 250 HP with a 6 or 7 speed and paddle shifters.

      Remember when small cars weighed around 2000 lbs? I saw a new Golf GTI parked next to a Rabbit GTI and was shocked. The new generation GTI is HUGE. It makes me wonder how much of that weight is for safety and if it is necessary. But then again, everyone wants power this and that on their ride.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Horsepower wars are over in one way. The horsepower to weight ratios of current cars has 0-60 times in sub 4 seconds for many vehicles and under 12 seconds in the quarter mile. At some point, cars can only be so fast and we have about reached the limit on some of these. Frankly having driven my Viper at 150 mph, there are very few places you can do that and not for long anyhow.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Yes the horsepower war is over.....................for morons.

      Those who planned ahead have enough profitable, high valume small vehicles that will offset small production sports cars. Think about it, if Toyota Prius owns 45% of the hybrid market....do you really think Toyota will be concerned with a hit on its CAFE by a 25-30 thousand units a year sports car?

      No Ofcourse not, on the other hand if you are GM and there's no guarancy that people will countinue buying Eveos so you CAFE is high enough to sell Camaros and G8's.......in that case you may want to scale back on big HP.

      Speaking of BIG HP............sports cars are low valume products and REAL sports engines are very expencive and probably to big sellers...so their affect on CAFE is minimal.

      How many Mustangs out there are sold with V8 compared to smaller engines?
      • 7 Years Ago
      HP wars over? Hardly, the lower volume manufacturers won't give a rats ass what the EPA requirements are, they will just factor in the penalty per car to the price and people will still buy them.

        • 7 Years Ago
        In that regard, you are correct...

        However the Horsepower wars generally refer to competition between the Major Manufacturers.

        Ferrari, Lambo, and the others will always be the way they are (unless the EU kills them) and I don't think the government will care because their volume is so low...

        Porsche, however, could be affected. They produce cars in higher volume. In fact it has been speculated that this is one of the many reasons Porsche is slowly taking over VW. They can lump Porsche's CAFE numbers in with VWs.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Not a huge loss, IMO. Traditional sports cars aren't about HP anyway, and I'm tired of auto rags feeding the hype by calling ~8 second 0-60 times "slow." Today's average consumer would be more than happy to trade 10 MPG for a second or two in the quarter.

      Anyway, horsepower wars are as much about ad copy as they are about "performance." Most models are faster in 2008 than they were in 1998, but are they more fun to drive? Primary control feel hasn't improved in most cases (and has gotten worse in some, thanks EPS). It takes a lot more work--and with results that are less marketing-friendly--to make a car holistically responsive, communicative, and enjoyable.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I think we can kiss the V8 Camaro, Mustang, and Challenger goodbye.

      Turbo Direct Injection V6 anyone?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Well I see it this way, the era of the gasoline horse power is coming to an end, but once hydrogen technology is perfect who knows we might see another then!
      • 7 Years Ago
      CAFE is the most ridiculous form of the US Government to control the consumer environment. They should have absolutely NO INFLUENCE over what kind of vehicle a manufacturer can make. As gas prices rise, people naturally seek their own alternative mode of transportation by effects of simple economics.

      I am the GM of a General Motors Dealership in a large metro market. 1 year ago our GMC sales was comprised 95% of Sierra and Yukon Sales. Today, our GMC sales mix is over 80% Acadia Sales. The consumer market figured this out 100% on their own. The Government had nothing to do with it. At this rate, GM will organically decrease their stake in the Large SUV an Pickup market and find their own way with models that work for the times.
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