The final 2007 model year tally of corporate average fuel economy for automakers selling cars in the U.S. is done, and Toyota came out on top of the heap again among the big brands. However, Toyota was not the overall winner. That honor went to none other than Lotus with 30.2 mpg! Lotus however is a very small fish in a huge if shrinking pond, having only sold six hundred 2007 model cars here. Toyota sold a couple more than that and averaged 29.69 mpg with its lineup of Priuses, Camrys, Corollas and Tundras. The no. 1 brand edged out Honda and Hyundai, which got 29.47 and 29.39 respectively. The Detroit based automakers? Well, not so good. GM, Ford and the then DaimlerChrysler brought up the rear with 25.16, 25.15 and 23.97. The 2008 numbers should show a significant improvement for all three companies now that truck sales have gone in the toilet and they are selling whatever smaller cars they have as fast as they can build them. Chrysler will also benefit by not including Mercedes-Benz in its numbers.
The averages are sales weighted and based on fuel economy numbers from 1970s era test procedures rather than the new lower mileage numbers that can be found on current window stickers, so keep that in mind. You can check out the full report at the NHTSA web-site including numbers for previous model years.
[Source: NHSTA, via Toyota Open Road Blog, Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty]