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Romney says the new standards are "extreme," but Obama disagrees

This week was particularly monumental for the auto industry as the Obama administration finalized the new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. The new rules have faced some criticism, but President Barack Obama isn’t backing down.
The criticism comes from Obama’s presidential election opponent Mitt Romney, who believes there is a better method of increasing fuel economy than changing CAFE standards.

"Just yesterday, my opponent called my position on fuel efficiency standards extreme," said Obama. "It doesn't seem extreme to me to want to build more fuel efficient cars. Maybe the steam engine is more his speed."

Obama further added that the new CAFE standards will allow U.S. drivers to fill up their gas tanks "half as often." But when the new rules were finalized Tuesday, Romney failed to see the benefit to driving citizens. 

"Governor Romney opposes the extreme standards that President Obama has imposed, which will limit the choices available to American families," said Andrea Saul, Romney spokeswoman. "The president tells voters that his regulations will save them thousands of dollars at the pump, but always forgets to mention that the savings will be wiped out by having to pay thousands of dollars more upfront for unproven technology that they may not even want."

The new fuel efficiency standards for 2017-2025 will cost the auto industry $157.3 billion and add an average of $2,000 extra to the sticker price of new autos.

While some are clearly unhappy with the new standards, others are seeing added benefits. Honda, for example, was delighted to see that the standards provided extra credits for those selling natural gas-powered vehicles. Tesla also jumped on the CAFE bandwagon when it learned that it could sell any credits for surpassing the standards to companies that haven't.

The CAFE standards will raise the average fuel efficiency of cars and light trucks to 54.5 mpg by model year 2025. These new standards, which were created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOTs) National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), were based off of the Obama Administration's first standards raised average fuel efficiency to 35.5 mpg by 2016. It was intended for cars and light trucks during model years 2011-2016.

The 54.5 mpg CAFE standard aims to save consumers more than $1.7 trillion at the gas pump, cut U.S. oil consumption by 12 billion barrels, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 6 billion metric tons over the course of the program, and encourage the adoption of autos like electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids. 

Source: The Detroit News

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RE: 54 MPG?
By Keeir on 8/31/2012 10:03:31 PM , Rating: 0
It's the same for my Renault Megane. About 55mpg for mixed driving, and about 11s 0-100km/h.

Sigh. Europeans.

The US measures Fuel Economy per US gallon, which is smaller than the Imperial Gallon. On top of that the US EPA test is different than the European Driving Cycles.

Example, the Toyota Prius is rated at ~50 MPG Combined USA and ~72 MPG Combined UK.

And a second part that critics saying that this will cost more for the consumers are forgetting is that oil is a limited resource. The more we use, the more the oil companies can push the prices upwards, and the more it will cost us consumers in the long run.

And? No one is really arguing the point. The concept of CAFE is to force Automakers to -SELL- fuel efficient cars. It really doesn't matter how many they design or make. Its the actual sales that count. If the American People see the benefit in more fuel efficient cars, then the market will prefer fuel efficient cars and Automakers will compete to produce them. No need for CAFE government spending, compliance costs, and lobbying costs. If the American people feel that fuel efficieny is not properly appeciated by the American people... well maybe a gas tax is a good idea.

RE: 54 MPG?
By michael67 on 9/1/2012 5:05:56 PM , Rating: 3
Sigh. Americans.

Only thinking of the short term!

But i agree maybe CAFE is not the best way to have more fuel efficient cars, just up the price of a gallon!

I pay 15nok/L or about $10 per gallon her in Norway, and yes its a pain but we don't have any need for a CAFE standard, you just wane buy a efficient car, as a Doge RAM for daily use would just bankrupt you.
But then, how really needs a RAM for daily use???

The problem is that most people in the US think that, hybrid and specially EV's, are only for tree-hugers!

I own a Lexus GS450h, Jaguar XJS 6L V12, and a Skyline R33, so you properly could say, i like cars.
(Got both the jag and the R33 far from mint condition and fixed them in my spare time, as for the Lexus, that one is going to be used till it it the end of its days)
Next to that i have a Honda CB500, that i use when it dose not rain, to get me quick true traffic.

But me and my family (8 drivers total), we own now 3 Think City EVs, and i use the EV the most, as 90% of the trips are like 1 to 5 miles and 20 miles max, and it saves us literately thousands of dollars a year in petrol cost, road tax and insurance.

And even do they are not the most comfortable of cars, they are not really bad aider to drive, certainly not for the short trips they are meant for.

All in all, i drive +95% of the time in the EV's or on the motor, and have no real problem with the $10/gallon price of fuel, you just have to learn how to buy the right one's and use them efficient.

And i also tried out a Leave it drives the same as a Yaris, i would seriously consider one new or secondhand!

RE: 54 MPG?
By Zoomer on 9/2/2012 11:43:43 AM , Rating: 2
Upping the price of a gallon is probably the best way. It encourages these who drive more - and thus see more benefit from higher mileage vehicles - to buy more efficient vehicles, while these who would drive a few thousand miles in as many years can buy these inefficient cars which are cheaper, simpler, less likely to break, while having minimal impact on oil consumption.

RE: 54 MPG?
By michael67 on 9/2/2012 5:59:05 PM , Rating: 2
while these who would drive a few thousand miles in as many years can buy these inefficient cars which are cheaper, simpler, less likely to break

For example the German VW Polo 1.6 TSI diesel 66kW/90pk dose 64 US mpg, and is considered here one of the most reliable cars in the EU. (the Polo is the same size as a Toyota Yaris)

But because its considered to small for the US market its not for sale in the US, next to that it would properly brake down in the US, because of the low grade diesel you guys using.

So mandating that the quality of diesel would be improved would also be beneficial for better fuel consumption, as EU diesels are way more efficient then US diesels.

And you have a hard time noticing that your driving a diesels now a days, except in your wallet!

What you also have here is many people owning 2 cars, one small one for daily use, and a big one for special or holidays use.
And you have even special insurance, ware insure your second car for almost noting extra.

RE: 54 MPG?
By GotThumbs on 9/5/2012 9:23:16 AM , Rating: 2
One of the easiest and fastest solutions to increasing the nations average MPG is to do exactly what was done in the 70's, but Americans would fight and kick all the way.

Reduce AND enforce current speed limits. If everyone would try driving no faster than 55mph or 60mph for two tank fulls...they would see a huge increase in their average mpg.

I have a 1 ton Quad-cab cummins powered Dodge Ram and consistently average between 25 and 26 mpg. Most drivers would probably get around 15 mpg in the same truck. Everyone talks about 0-60 times, but it's NOT a dragster your why continue to focus on this insignificant stat...because most Americans choose to ignore the obvious and continue to listen to the marketing and sales-people. We're seeing the US become a nation ruled by fools who choose to ignore the inevitable train wreck that has already hit Greece.

"This is from the It's a science website." -- Rush Limbaugh

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