Go figure.

That's all we can say to reports that U.S. fleetwide fuel economy in June fell for the third straight month, despite the fact that hybrid and alt-fuel vehicle sales are about double what they were a year earlier.

Fleetwide fuel efficiency last month fell to an even 23 miles per gallon from 23.2 in May and from 23.3 mpg in April, TrueCar reported. Those numbers are consistent with the University of Michigan's Transportation Research Institute's (UMTRI) figures, which show June's Corporate Average Fuel Economy also dropping for the third straight month to 29 miles per gallon.

TrueCar blames what it calls an "unseasonable drop" in gas prices, which apparently caused consumers to buy more trucks and other big-engined vehicles. Average gas prices in the U.S. fell about 15 cents during the month to about $3.35 a gallon as of July 1, according to AAA.

The good news is that fuel-efficiency numbers are still ahead of year-earlier figures. TrueCar has average fuel economy up 6.5 percent from a year earlier, while UMTRI reports a 3.9 percent rise in fuel economy.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 23 Comments
      Marco Polo
      • 2 Years Ago
      The incongruity of these vehicles always amazes me. Defenders of the vehicles point out that they have a serious use as utilitarian work vehicles, for carrying loads and workers across rough terrain. Ok, I accept in some instances that may well be the case, but if that's true, isn't the expensive paint job and all that chrome a just little counter-productive ? The wheels and low set lights, along with those dinky little chrome running boards would appear to be a little hard to avoid damaging over rough terrain. In truth, most of these vehicles serve no other purpose than as a suburban fashion item, spawned by an oversight in the original CARB regulations.
        SNP
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        I dont think a ratty looking, rusty vehicle would sell as well. It really doesnt cost a lot to apply chrome, even fleet buyers are swayed by exterior design. I think I've posted the numbers before... From 2008-2010 Ford fleet sales were: 30-38%. GM 36-39%. Chrysler 14-15%. Toyota 9-12%. Nissan 2-4%. I think it's safe to say fleet sales are for business use, nobody buys 100 decked out trucks for fun. Seeing how Ford and GM combined dominate the markets, (Ford alone sells more pickups than chrysler, toyota,nissan combined), I'd say a huge amount of them are not for fun. Out of that fleet sale, you'd have to find the numbers that are used for small businesses. Remember that a small business owner who only requires a pickup 20% of the time still requires a pickup. Doesnt matter if it just sits there or is being mixed in with personal use. Obviously looking at those numbers & marketing strategy, you can tell Nissan/Toyota/Chrysler are only selling it for looks to people with too much time & money. But Ford/GM clearly are targeting large and small businesses.
          SNP
          • 2 Years Ago
          @SNP
          sorry, those are 2007-2010 numbers
          Marco Polo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @SNP
          SNP It's amazing how you can consistently misinterpret almost every statistic. This is probably because you only select those facts that suit your theories. The Federal Clean Air Act, was first passed back in 1963, but gained momentum in 1967 and in 1970 amendments were passed requiring extensive federal and state regulations for Automotive pollution. By 1977 the act was amended to give Federal enforcement authorities real power. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) established by Gov. Ronald Reagan in 1967, actually preceded the Federal act (which is why only California can is permitted it's own independent regs.) This activist Board has generally set the pace for automotive pollution and during the 1970's and early 1980's introduced regulations that effectively made the large US sedan and wagon impractical. The regulations did not cover trucks. It was assumed that these vehicles did not constitute sufficient percentage of miles traveled to justify the expense and difficulty of restrictions. Light trucks received lenient treatment from the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (1975) for fuel economy, and emissions from the Clean Air Act and CARB. By the late 1980's the success of the Range Rover and Jeep Cheroke, Chevy Blazer etc made these vehicles popular, the low cost of construction, combined with a burgeoning demand made these vehicles very attractive for the manufacturers of light truck's as replacements for now very expensive to build large sedans and wagons which were increasingly seen as old fashioned. Fleet light trucks are seldom ordered with expensive paint or unsuitable accessories. In fact most light trucks ordered as fleet vehicles are expected to be sign-written or have work/utility additions. Few employers wish to provide 'trade' employees with vehicles that are attractive enough to be used for non-employment related purposes. The overwhelming number of these vehicles could be replaced by smaller, vehicles with the same load capacity, but much smaller engines and much greater fuel economy.
        brotherkenny4
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        They do have utility. They make certain physical defficiencies seem less apparent. Somewhat similar to the sportscar enhancement. No one will ever mistake you for a limp wristed nancyboy if your driving one of these, and apparently there are a good number of guys for which there is apparently some doubt even in their own minds. I'd suggest the corvette rather than a truck if you need something like this though. There is a little better resale value with the corvette. The truck will eventually just be scrap.
          Spiffster
          • 2 Years Ago
          @brotherkenny4
          Same thing with sports cars, trucks, luxury cars, exotic cars... all the same. Status symbols, compensate for lack of status and or penis size (not in every case though)... on the other hand people buy EVs, not to save money, but to make a statement... and I can get behind that.
        Spec
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        The USA is filled with pick-up trucks that have never carried a bale of hay. That's just how we roll.
        Nick
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Yep, pure fashion items.
        Ryan
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        I doubt it was an 'oversight'. It was a deliberate inclusion by one group that probably demanded it be there or they would complain and get the current truck drivers all worked up.
          Marco Polo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ryan
          Ryan, Maybe, but i think it was more or less unintentional. At that time there were no such things as 'SUV's' , basically all 4WD's were work related. With the loss of the large US sedan and station-wagon, suddenly the new macho image became the luxury 'SUV", the car makers just followed the fashion and exploited the demand.
          SNP
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Ryan
          Yeah it was, they ended that after the 2008 crisis. The numbers show it too. Demand for large SUVs/truck sales dropped significantly, models like lincoln pickup/navigator/escalade/hummers were either halted or left with no refresh cycles. BUT despite all that sudden drop in both supply and demand of clearly luxury pickups/SUVs, the market share of trucks to cars has only budged slightly in favor of cars. People still need trucks. It's easy to compromise for personal use, but very difficult to compromise for business use because the vehicle is an investment with an expected return.
        EZEE
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Sort of like when I see jeep wranglers that have never been off road. Like, 'you bought a slow, small, poor riding, poor gas mileage car that does one thing well and you never use it for that one thing?'
      Rick
      • 2 Years Ago
      Why can't we have something like a nice green & fuel efficient awesome greenie Dodge Ram this in the UK, could put the mountain & road bikes in the back & take a trip out in country, shoot a few moose's bring them home for supper, buy a new tow a boat, put the hedge trimmings in, use the bed as a swimming pool in the summer, would be great for DIY trips down to Homebase Hog roast on the new Barbie, strap the Mothers in law in her back on her rocking chair on the bed for winter skiing vacation trip in Scotland, would get some brownie points off the wife for taking 21 suitcases and kitchen sink as well. Shame you guys get all the fun good green fuel efficient vehicle like the Dodge Ram, you lucky buggers, shame we don't have anything this green in the UK.
      winc06
      • 2 Years Ago
      Get rid of the commuter/carpool lane and replace it with a single, gas guzzler lane with a speed limit of 50 mph.
      Spec
      • 2 Years Ago
      It is going to drop some more if the price of oil remains low. People are going to get themselves in a lot of trouble if they buy gas guzzlers and then the oil price goes back up. It is pretty sad because there are a lot of good high MPG cars out there now.
        Ryan
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Spec
        It serves them right. Hopefully there are groups and people warning them, or is it just common sense that if your big rig/suv gets 12 mpg in the city and traffic, or going 90mph down the freeway, that you will spend a lot of money on fuel and have to worry about future gas prices or shortages?
      winc06
      • 2 Years Ago
      Double the road use tax.
        Ford Future
        • 2 Years Ago
        @winc06
        Double the gas tax and do more good. There's plenty of high-speed rail, and bike lanes, plus highway and water projects that need to be built.
      Peter
      • 2 Years Ago
      So why would you expect different when "light trucks" get preferential treatment in the US (exemptions from "car" regulations) and the true cost of driving (road and bridge maintenance) isn't in the gas price?
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 2 Years Ago
      You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink. Cut oil subsidies, wars that keep oil-bearing countries destabilized and desperate for a buck, and remove tax favoritism and watch things change over night as prices go up.
      Rick
      • 2 Years Ago
      Glad to see those gas guzzling 21 MPG 1908 Model-T's have finally been shamed off of US roads. Well done.
      Actionable Mango
      • 2 Years Ago
      Price peaks, everyone buys compacts. Price wanes, everyone buys SUVs.
      EZEE
      • 2 Years Ago
      Dag gum it!
    • Load More Comments
    Advertisement

    From Our Partners

    2014 Jeep Cherokee
    MSRP: $22,995 - $30,095
    2015 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
    MSRP: $51,800 - $103,200
    2014 Chevrolet Cruze
    MSRP: $17,520 - $24,985