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Automakers claim new fuel economy ratings will put hundreds of thousands out of work  (Source: Business Week)
Supporters of increased efficiency standards claim the numbers are inflated

The battle between the auto industry and the federal government over changes to fuel economy regulations is exploding. Lawmakers in Washington want to impose much more efficient standards on future vehicles that could see a fleet wide fuel economy average of 62 mpg in effect by 2025.

Some in the automotive industry argue that the costs to reach the lofty 62 mpg fleet wide average will be much higher than the cost of burning more fuel in less efficient vehicles for consumers. Automakers have previously claimed that the costs would have a dire impact on the industry.

new study by the Center for Automotive Research has been published and the study claims that the rise in efficiency standards by 2025 to 62 mpg could add up to $9,790 to the cost of a new vehicle and will reduce sales by 5.5 million units. The report also claims that the resultant price increase would force a reduction of 260,000 automotive industry jobs due to reduced demand for vehicles by consumers.

On the other side of the battle, those pushing for the increased efficiency standards claim that the tech needed to meet the efficiency standards would only add $770 to $3,500 to the price of a new vehicle.

David Friedman, deputy director of the Union of Concerned Scientists' Clean Vehicles program and supporter of the new efficiency mandate, said, "The Obama administration should ignore this industry-advocate propaganda piece and focus on setting the strongest vehicle efficiency and global warming pollution standards based on credible scientific analysis."

President and CEO of the Union, Jay Baron, says that the main difference in cost between the industry and government studies depends on how much the price of the technology will come down over the next 15 years.

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RE: Because who knows better
By 91TTZ on 6/16/2011 10:57:57 AM , Rating: 2
Infinitely variable valve timing?

My 1991 300ZX TT has variable valve timing, Nissan was using it since 1987. It wasn't infinitely variable, but surely they could see back then that it was the next step. Porsche has been using infinitely variable valve timing since 1999.

Direct injection?

First used on gasoline engines in 1925. Didn't provide a huge benefit so it never became popular. With newer emissions laws automakers will probably have to go that way.

Cars that can parallel park themselves?

Toyota introduced that on production models in 2003, and surely was in development long before that. I don't think you can say it was unheard of.

But really, if a person can't control their car enough to parallel park, they shouldn't be driving.

Hell man, the average car today has more computing power than a circa 1999 personal computer EVER had.

That's completely untrue. Car ECUs use low-powered microcontrollers, not powerful general purpose CPUs. I think GM and Bosch uses the MPC5xx series. The fastest processor in that family can process 28 MIPS. An Intel Pentium 3 from 1999 could do over 2,000 MIPS. A better comparison would be a Intel 486 from the late 80's or early 90's which could do about 50 MIPS.

RE: Because who knows better
By Reclaimer77 on 6/16/11, Rating: 0
RE: Because who knows better
By Reclaimer77 on 6/16/2011 11:14:18 AM , Rating: 2
First used on gasoline engines in 1925. Didn't provide a huge benefit so it never became popular. With newer emissions laws automakers will probably have to go that way.

P.S., your arguments are akin to saying the Chinese first invented firework rockets hundreds of years ago, so a modern cruise missile isn't a "big deal". Are you being serious or just trolling?

RE: Because who knows better
By 91TTZ on 6/16/2011 2:04:00 PM , Rating: 2
I'm all for private industry. I'm not a liberal or a socialist who thinks that a government run (and easily abused)welfare state is going to produce progress like a capitalist system will. I'm all about survival of the fittest, personal responsibility and the ability of people/companies with good ideas to be able to profit off them.

I'm familiar with car electronics and electronics in general. I made a few dataloggers to interface with my cars' ECUs so I could pull the raw data down from them, and playing with an Arduino microcontroller makes me respect the amount of work that can be done by a low powered processor.

The vast majority of the processors in a car are going to be very low powered, things like the ECU, the transmission's control unit, the climate control unit, the traction control unit, the ABS control unit, the trip computer, etc. The most powerful processor is going to be in a newer car's media center.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)

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