Average new car mpg levels hit record high in August, spurred by Cash for Clunkers

The success or failure of the Cash for Clunkers program that recently came to an end here in the United States has been and will continue to be debatable, but at least some good was accomplished by the legislation. According to data compiled by Wards Auto, the average new car fuel mileage hit a new record of 23 miles per gallon in August, which is a gain of approximately eight percent from August of 2008.

As far as individual automakers go, Toyota came out on top with an average of 26.9 mpg for all cars sold in August, followed by Kia at 25.1 and Hyundai at 24.9 mpg. American nameplates made the biggest mileage jump, rising about four percent from August of 2008 to 20.4 mpg – a new record.

Nobody knows exactly what will happen when the sales figures from September are calculated, but many experts are predicting that fuel efficiency will take a nosedive now that C4C will no longer be offering up to $4,500 to trade up to a new, more efficient car or truck. Overall though, fuel efficiency is likely to steadily increase over the next few years in correlation with the latest CAFE requirements.

[Source: Wards Auto via Green Car Reports | Image: Kevork Djansezian/Getty]

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