EPA Says Vehicle Fuel Efficiency Has Hit All-Time High
December 13, 2013 10:04 AM
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The Mazda CX-5 is one of the most fuel efficient crossovers in its class.
EPA says average efficiency has increased 22% since 2004
According to the EPA, the fuel efficiency of 2012 model year cars and trucks in the U.S. hit an all-time high. The average for all 2012 model vehicles was 23.6 miles per gallon. The EPA says that overall fuel economy increased by 1.2 mpg compared to fleet wide 2011 economy numbers, making it the second highest gain in fuel efficiency in the last 30 years.
The overall fuel efficiency increase was attributed to two factors: an industry-wide move towards “greener” powertrains in vehicles and higher fuel prices which in turn pushed customers towards more efficient vehicles.
Mazda was the most fuel-efficient automaker with an average of 27.1 mpg in 2012, up 2.1 mpg compared to the previous year. Honda was second at 26.6mpg, and Toyota was third at 25.6 mpg.
Ford was in eighth place with an overall average of 22.8 mpg followed by GM in ninth with 21.7 mpg. Both of those automakers count trucks among their best selling vehicles.
Both Kia and Hyundai were left out of the rankings due to
investigations over false fuel efficiency claims
. Those automakers had to change window stickers to reflect corrected fuel efficiency measurements once the EPA did some snooping following customer complaints of poor fuel economy.
Fuel efficiency has increased by 22% since the 2004 model year, and the EPA notes that current trends show that 2013 model year vehicles should boost the average to 24 mpg.
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A major cause is gaming the system
12/15/2013 6:38:10 PM
The averages are based on what auto makers are selling, not what people are buying. This not only gives car makers a huge incentive to overstate their mileage numbers (Kia got caught, be all know damn well every car company is doing the same.) They've also found ways to really boost freeway gas mileage, not so much city. (My 2013 Civic gets slightly worse mpg in city driving that my 1999 Civic, but between 5 and 10% better on the freeway.)
Car makers also sell boutique electric and hybrid cars (Cadillac anyone.) They get an additional boost my government mandates which require purchasing these vehicles as fleet vehicles.
Is the news good? Yes. Is it as good as claimed? Not even close.
"There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere." -- Isaac Asimov
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