For model-year 2012, Mercedes-Benz will have at least two fewer vehicles on the "gas-guzzler" tax list published by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This will continue a positive trend for the company, as, in 2011, 12 M-B models are subject to the dreaded gas-guzzler tax, one less than in 2010 and 10 fewer than in 2006.
Instituted back in 1978, the gas-guzzler tax is applied at the point of purchase against vehicles with "exceptionally low fuel economy." The one-time fee ranges from $1,200 to $7,700.
In addition to eliminating vehicles from the list, M-B says that five 2011 models – S600, S65 AMG, CL600, CL63 AMG and CL65 AMG – are subject to reduced taxes, compared to the prior year's amount. Vehicles expected to escape the dreaded gas guzzler tax for 2012 include the CLS550 and CLS63 AMG. Both are completely redesigned and have improved fuel economy ratings.