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Support announcements could be made today

The deliberations between Washington and the automotive industry have been fierce when it comes to agreeing on the new CAFE standards for automobiles. The automotive industry still maintains that he cost to implement the tech to reach the CAFE standards proposed by 2025 will cut sales and cost jobs in the automotive market.

However, it looks like Washington and Detroit are near to making a deal, as five of the top automotive manufacturers (Chrysler, GM, Ford, Honda, and Hyundai) are ready to back a slightly reduced fuel economy standard by 2025. The original CAFE proposal had the fleet wide fuel economy average at 56 MPG by 2025 and the new reduced standards are 54.5 MPG.

However, the new plan also has other stipulations. Earlier this week DailyTech reported that Detroit was looking for reduced standards for light truck and work trucks. Washington is willing to deal according to the Detroit News. The new plan will see the fuel efficiency on light truck going up 3.5% annually from 2017 to 2012 -- in 2022-2025, the economy standards will go up by 5% anually.

There is also a plan to make special rules for work trucks as was requested by Detroit. An official in the Obama administration said, "We are encouraged by the strong, positive feedback we are receiving from many companies and look forward to wrapping up the discussions in the near future."

Announcements of support for the new plan could come as early as today reports The Detroit News. There hasn’t been word from the environmentalist camp in California that was strongly supporting higher CAFE standards. If California isn't happy, they still have the power to set their own standards within the state.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, "This is not easy, but the companies are being very cooperative. Frankly, everyone is working 24-7. These deliberations are going on somewhere between 12 and 18 hours every day for the last several days … I think we will get there."



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RE: I don't get it
By Targon on 7/28/2011 8:17:47 AM , Rating: 2
While I don't agree with him, there is the issue that you can't just make a proclamation and poof, it is possible. To say the auto industry MUST be able to improve fuel economy by ANY percentage every year discounts the increase in difficulty as you make improvements. Look at computer chips, you don't see 5GHz processors all over the place, do you? There comes a point in design where you have to accept that you just can't make improvements in some areas beyond a certain point with current technology, so you MUST focus on other areas.

Here's one, eliminate Ethanol, and suddenly you get better fuel economy! Or come up with another type of fuel entirely(not EVs since electric power MUST come from somewhere, even if it's not the car itself), but can gas itself be further refined for better fuel economy? Push carbon nanotube technology as a way to improve batteries so a hybrid doesn't need a HUGE battery pack.

If you have a job, and your boss expects you to improve your productivity by 5 percent per year, does he/she really think that after ten years you will be that much more productive? Getting more productivity out of anything requires a greater and greater effort, and like trying to accelerate to the speed of light, there comes a point where it's just unrealistic. If you change the way things are done in a MASSIVE way, then getting a huge productivity boost will work, but that does require a real game changer to achieve it.

Computers...they changed the way things were done in an office, but just throwing more people, or working longer hours before computers wouldn't make ANYONE as fast as a computer when it comes to looking up information. That is the only way that the auto industry can survive with idiots in politics who have never made a product in their lives and don't understand the basics of how difficult it is to produce something.

Remember, most politicians can't even draft their own bills, and they require a small army of aides to do much of the work in wording the laws. Hell, they get pay increases every year, perhaps we should require they spend that much longer in their offices every time they get a pay increase, and after 30 years, they should be able to be in their office for 40 hours a day, even though there are only 24 hours in a day.


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