• Nov 16, 2011
The U.S. Department of Transportation, Environmental Protection Agency and the White House have announced new fuel economy standards for model year 2017-2025 vehicles that will require cars and light trucks to yield a combined 54.5 mpg, as was proposed back in July.

According to the government, these new Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards will help save as much as 2.2 million barrels of oil per day by 2025, reducing our dependence on foreign oil and saving vehicle owners plenty of money at the pump. In fact, the fed says that a consumer purchasing a new car in 2025 will save $6,600 in fuel costs over the lifetime of that vehicle. Of course, the technologies required to achieve these new targets will make vehicles more expensive too, but the agencies claim that consumers will still save $4,400 over the life of a vehicle after factoring in those extra costs.

The new CAFE rules will follow current 2011-2016 standards that call for cars and light trucks to hit 34.1 mpg combined by 2016. The rule is backed by over 100 members of Congress, and if adopted will undergo a 90-day comment period before becoming official.

Some members of Congress believe that the rules haven't been evaluated thoroughly enough, however. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-California) has expressed concerns about the technical feasibility of the new standards. While most automakers have backed the 54.5 mpg goal, Volkswagen has been vocally against the plan in the past. While the new standards are strict, the plan does provide one single national standard for the industry to follow, unlike before where automakers met a minimum national standard as well as separate, tougher standards adopted by individual states led by California (the dreaded "patchwork" of regulation).

We're all for better fuel economy, though the tight time frame likely means that automakers will resort to costly hybrid and alt-fuel options over the next 18 years to boost their fuel economy figures, and those substantial research, development and production costs are sure to get passed on to car buyers. It will be interesting to watch how eager shoppers are to hop onto this new, greener bandwagon.
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We Can't Wait: Obama Administration Proposes Historic Fuel Economy Standards to Reduce Dependence on Oil, Save Consumers Money at the Pump

Next phase in national program for light-duty vehicles will save consumers thousands of dollars at the pump while saving billions of barrels of oil, curbing pollution, enabling long-term planning for automakers

WASHINGTON – Building on President Obama's historic national program, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) today formally unveiled their joint proposal to set stronger fuel economy and greenhouse gas pollution standards for Model Year 2017-2025 passenger cars and light trucks. Cars, SUVs, minivans, and pickup trucks are currently responsible for nearly 60 percent of U.S. transportation-related petroleum use and greenhouse gas emissions.

Today's announcement is the latest in a series of executive actions the Obama Administration is taking to strengthen the economy and move the country forward because we can't wait for Congressional Republicans to act. When combined with other historic steps this administration has taken to increase energy efficiency, this proposal will save Americans over $1.7 trillion at the pump, more than $8,000 per vehicle by 2025. These combined actions also will reduce America's dependence on oil by an estimated 12 billion barrels, and, by 2025, reduce oil consumption by 2.2 million barrels per day – enough to offset almost a quarter of the current level of our foreign oil imports. Taken together, these actions will also slash 6 billion metric tons in greenhouse gas emissions over the life of the programs.

Today's proposed standards alone will slash oil consumption by 4 billion barrels and cut 2 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas pollution over the lifetimes of the vehicles sold in those years.

"These unprecedented standards are a remarkable leap forward in improving fuel efficiency, strengthening national security by reducing our dependence on oil, and protecting our climate for generations to come. We expect this program will not only save consumers money, it will ensure automakers have the regulatory certainty they need to make key decisions that create jobs and invest in the future," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "We are pleased that we've been able to work with the auto industry, the states, and leaders in the environmental and labor communities to move toward even tougher standards for the second phase of the President's national program to improve fuel economy and reduce pollution."

"By setting a course for steady improvements in fuel economy over the long term, the Obama administration is ensuring that American car buyers have their choice of the most efficient vehicles ever produced in our country. That will save them money, reduce our nation's oil consumption and cut harmful emissions in the air we breathe," said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. "This is an important addition to the landmark clean cars program that President Obama initiated to establish fuel economy standards more than two years ago. The progress we made with the help of the auto industry, the environmental community, consumer groups and others will be expanded upon in the years to come -- benefitting the health, the environment and the economy for the American people."

The proposed program for MY 2017-2025 passenger cars and trucks is expected to require increases in fuel efficiency equivalent to 54.5 mpg if all reductions were made through fuel economy improvements. These improvements would save consumers an average of up to $6,600 in fuel costs over the lifetime of a MY 2025 vehicle for a net lifetime savings of up to $4,400 after factoring in related increases in vehicle cost. Overall, the net benefit to society from this rule would total more than $420 billion over the lifetime of the vehicles sold in MY 2017-2025.

Today's action builds on the success of the first phase of the Obama Administration's national program(2012-2016), which will raise fuel efficiency equivalent to 35.5 mpg by 2016 and result in an average light vehicle tailpipe CO2 level of 250 grams per mile. These standards are already in effect and saving consumers money at the pump now. Combined with 2011 fuel economy standards and the standards in effect for 2012-2016, today's proposal represents the most significant federal action ever taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve fuel economy. Taken together, these actions would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by half and result in model year 2025 light-duty vehicles with nearly double the fuel economy of model year 2010 vehicles.

The national policy on fuel economy standards and greenhouse gas emissions created by DOT and EPA provides regulatory certainty and flexibility that reduces the cost of compliance for auto manufacturers while reducing oil consumption and harmful air pollution. By continuing the national program developed for MY 2012-2016 vehicles, EPA and DOT have designed a proposal that allows manufacturers to keep producing a single, national fleet of passenger cars and light trucks that satisfies all federal and California standards. It also ensures that consumers will continue to enjoy a full range of vehicle choices with performance, utility and safety features that meet their individual needs.

The standards will rely on innovative technologies that are expected to spur economic growth and create high-quality jobs across the country. Major auto manufacturers are already heavily invested in developing advanced technologies that can significantly reduce fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions beyond the existing model year 2012-2016 standards. In addition, a wide range of technologies are currently available for automakers to meet the new standards, including advanced gasoline engines and transmissions, vehicle weight reduction, lower tire rolling resistance, improvements in aerodynamics, diesel engines, more efficient accessories, and improvements in air conditioning systems. The standards should also spur manufacturers to increasingly explore electric technologies such as start/stop, hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and electric vehicles. The MY 2017-2025 proposal includes a number of incentive programs to encourage early adoption and introduction of "game changing" advanced technologies, such as hybridization for pickup trucks.

The proposal released today follows President Obama's announcement in July that the Administration and 13 major automakers representing more than 90 percent of all vehicles sold in the U.S. have agreed to build on the first phase of the national vehicle program. EPA and DOT worked closely with a broad range of stakeholders to develop the proposal-including manufacturers, the United Auto Workers, the State of California, and consumer and environmental groups.

There will be an opportunity for the public to comment on the proposal for 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. In addition, DOT and EPA plan to hold several public hearings around the country to allow further public input. California plans to issue its proposal for model year 2017-2025 vehicle greenhouse gas standards on December 7 and will finalize its standards in January. .

To view NHTSA and EPA's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, visit http://www.nhtsa.gov/fuel-economy.

For more information, visit http://www.epa.gov/otaq/climate/regulations.htm or http://www.nhtsa.gov/fuel-economy.


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  • 86 Comments
      tenspeeder
      • 3 Years Ago
      Back by over 100 members of Congress who will continue to drive their Escalades, Jaguars and S-Class without a worry to the environment. Isn't their motto -Let the middle class and below suffer and deal with new regulations.
      stclair5211
      • 3 Years Ago
      Of course. Anything to crush the economy and usher in the NWO police state. Hope AND change. Hope you like financial slavery, socialism, rationed care, death squads, no freedom and complete tyranny.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @stclair5211
        [blocked]
          LEDfoot
          • 3 Years Ago
          That's right, only the socialist propaganda of CNN and the other "truth"-based networks is approved
        Jason Allen
        • 3 Years Ago
        @stclair5211
        Am I free to be different from you? Cuz ur an idiot. Buy any glennbeck gold?
      drewbiewhan
      • 3 Years Ago
      I love how people make this into a purely political issue when Democrats are in power. I seem to recall this being a matter of national security when President Bush was in office.
      mylz
      • 3 Years Ago
      GO AWAY! SCREW THE EPA! cant wait for a conservative to get rid of that stupid program. its nothing more than a job killer. let the market/consumer decided. not the freaken government!
        DrEvil
        • 3 Years Ago
        @mylz
        mylz: Go up a couple of posts and read my response to RobbieAG: It also applies to you.
      RobbieAG
      • 3 Years Ago
      This is exactly why the EPA and DOT should be canned...
        kingrat001
        • 3 Years Ago
        @RobbieAG
        That's right, kill the EPA, just about the only government agency that's accomplished something really important. Get behind a classic car from the 50's to late 60's, and breath deeply.. Maybe then you'll understand the EPA is necessary, and ******* up to big business isn't always the thing to do.
        DrEvil
        • 3 Years Ago
        @RobbieAG
        only the morbidly ignorant (read stupid) would even suggest abolishing the EPA. Why don't we get rid of the FDA while we're at it. Do you even know half of what the EPA does? The EPA will outlive the union of 50 states. It is the EPA that the courts relies on as a neutral entity to settle environmental disputes between states . It was the EPA who cracked down on New York state when its medical waste kept washing up on New Jersey beaches. It was the EPA who prosecuted General Electric for recklessly dumping its chemical waste into streams and tributaries that fed into the Hudson river. GE, now with all appeals exhausted only recently started the clean up. It was the EPA that went after the auto industry for polluting the Great Lakes, and forced them to clean it up. .It was the EPA that cracked down on the dry-cleaning industry's use of PERC. - Do you know what PERC is? look it up. The EPA is far too important an agency for clowns to even have an opinion on. I could go on with the list of critically important functions of the EPA, but I an not going to do all of your thinking for you. Read and learn before you speak.
          DrEvil
          • 3 Years Ago
          @DrEvil
          StClair...: Well I guess we could have 50 different EPA agencies, and when each state could properly utilize their respective national guards to settle cross border disputes. States cannot manage shared resources, that includes waterways, and the atmosphere etc. What would stop any northern state from dumping raw sewage into the Mississippi river, say 1 mile north of the border with their southern neighbor? Kid, just put down the crack pipe.
          Pj Taintz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @DrEvil
          This isnt 1910, that wouldnt happen in todays interconnected world
          stclair5211
          • 3 Years Ago
          @DrEvil
          Why can't the states be their own EPA? We don't need a powerful federal government that does everything. Read the Constitution. I'm not doing that for you.
        lasertekk
        • 3 Years Ago
        @RobbieAG
        Why? Do you like breathing dirty air? Do you like drinking contaminated water? Do you like untested and toxic compounds being spread on your food or being used to build the products you interact with every day?
      artandcolour2010
      • 3 Years Ago
      it should have been 54.5 mpg by last year.
        The Other Bob
        • 3 Years Ago
        @artandcolour2010
        Are you joking? How would that work? Everyone would have drive a Prius or Volt.
          Vimicus
          • 3 Years Ago
          @The Other Bob
          Are YOU joking? In Europe they have cars with 80 MPG at under 24,000 dollars. Where the hell do you live? Under a freaking rock? You don't need a hybrid to be fuel efficient! Sheesh, are you capable of doing some bloody research instead of gobbling down the mainstream medias fecal matter!
          Dark Gnat
          • 3 Years Ago
          @The Other Bob
          Good mpgs in Europe, but poor emissions standards and safety features (which add a lot of weight).
          Alonzo Alex Clark
          • 3 Years Ago
          @The Other Bob
          @vimicus you are right in Europe they do have up to 80 mpg but you need to look at those car's they are small cars and not built for big families or guys like me who are 6'4"
          DrEvil
          • 3 Years Ago
          @The Other Bob
          Vimicus: We already have a car here that exceeds 80 mpg, Its called the Volt. LOS ANGELES – Jay Leno has driven his Chevrolet Volt to and from his job as host of “The Tonight Show” daily since taking delivery of his Volt in December. To date, he has traveled more than 10,000 miles using only grid energy and is still on the same tank of gas that was in the car when he brought it home from Rydell Chevrolet in Northridge. “I like electricity when I need it and gas when I need to use it,” said Leno. "I travel 28 miles to the studio every day, then I go shopping, run errands, pull in the driveway; that's 40 miles or so, then I plug it in, but if I need to travel further the car is ready for that too.”
      Andre Neves
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'd like to propose a less than 5% Unemployment rate by next year.
        lasertekk
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Andre Neves
        Fine. Let's put some of the criminals who caused the Great Recession in jail and I GUARANTEE you, everyone will think twice about engaging in destructive, shady dealings.
          LEDfoot
          • 3 Years Ago
          @lasertekk
          Sorry, I don't think Obama is going to prison but I see what people were thinking when they elected him: Since he was one of the major instruments in creating the mortgage crisis in the first place he should be best suited to fix it right!?
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        • 3 Years Ago
        [blocked]
        Vimicus
        • 3 Years Ago
        Because cars in Europe are so very expensive? Yet, they have cars with 80 miles per gallon? I love it when cultured and uncultured people collide in the internet. 24,000 dollars for an 85 miles per gallon car isn't "through the roof" nimrod. http://www.carmagazine.co.uk/Drives/Search-Results/First-drives/Volkswagen-Polo-Bluemotion-2010/
          tinted up
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Vimicus
          80 mpg euro is 66 mpg US. The car you speak of has a 74bhp 1.2 liter. SOUNDS LIKE A LOT OF FUN!
        mylz
        • 3 Years Ago
        thats another point. who the heck is going to spend 40k on a car the size of a chevy cruze? i mean there are rich people who spend that much on tiny german cars. but still. the average consumer cannot afford those prices of that type of technology
        lasertekk
        • 3 Years Ago
        what's wrong with a car the size of the Cruze? Last time I checked, it sat 5 people just fine. What more can the average nuclear American family want or need?
          Pj Taintz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @lasertekk
          The point is it isnt , or shouldnt be up to you or the government, it should be up to the consumer, and the car maker, no one else
      FriskyDingo
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'm going to fill everyone in on a little secret- our 'dependence on foreign oil' is as real your old imaginary friend Timmy. Shhhh...... I'm going to go hide now......
        stclair5211
        • 3 Years Ago
        @FriskyDingo
        Exactly. Another secret... THE LARGEST OIL RESERVE IN THE WORLD IS UNDER THE U.S. OUT WEST. p.s.- oil is created by the earth. It didn't come from dead dinosaurs silly boy. Shhh. Keep listening to your government. They wouldn't lie to you. (911, Waco, OKC, Vietnam, Libya, desert storm, shield, obama's birth cert, and on and on. A CT SS# from Hawaii? Palease.)
          oRenj9
          • 3 Years Ago
          @stclair5211
          Oil was created neither by dinosaurs nor magic faeries living in the Earth as you seem to believe. A lot of the wold's oil was formed in ancient lakes, seas, or oceans. Also, I have no idea what this LARGEST OIL RESERVE OUT WEST you are talking about is. If you're talking about the Bakken formation, you're going to be sorely disappointed to hear that it is only 3.65 BBO (source: USGS).
        Acefighter
        • 3 Years Ago
        @FriskyDingo
        How is it not real? We buy all of our oil from foreign countries. We COULD support ourselves if we could drill, but that would hurt Bambi, so we are stuck putting a noose around our own necks.
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Acefighter
          [blocked]
          LEDfoot
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Acefighter
          @StevenG: Now that's just an outright lie... but keep repeating those talking points, no need to think for yourself.
      Remy
      • 3 Years Ago
      Extrapolating the gas price by 2025, who in their right mind would drive a 20 MPG car ?
        LEDfoot
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Remy
        That doesn't make any sense, adjusted for inflation gas will probably cost about as much then as it does now.
      MLuddyJr
      • 3 Years Ago
      Why don't they just mandate an even 100mpg? Isn't that how new technologies develop? The government mandates it, then markets figure out how to build it.
      Hambone
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'll take my Mustang battery-free. I like to hear a rumble, not a monotonous hum
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Hambone
        [blocked]
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