US: average fuel economy slips away in August image

With sales driven more and more by larger crossovers, sport utility vehicles and pickup trucks, the average stated fuel economy of new light vehicles sold in the United States was lower in August.

According to the latest report on the matter released by the University of Michigan, the upfront average fuel economy has gone down lately by two percent compared to the record high established last year. The study delivered on a monthly basis from the university’s Transportation Research Institute gathers information on the average window sticker fuel economy of cars, light trucks, vans and SUVs delivered in the United States – the figure was 25.3 mpg for last month, lower than the July tally of 25.4 miles per gallon. Researchers Brandon Schoette and Michael Sivake first started recording the figures back in October 2007 and the best figure to date was recorded last year when it averaged 25.8 mpg. So far after the first eight months of the year, the yearly average fuel efficiency is at 25.4 mpg, the same as for the entire last year.

Another, related study made by the institute that covers the average emissions of greenhouse gases emitted by each driver in the US announced that in June (the most recent month covered by the research) the tally has grown by 3.8 percent compared to the same period last year. This could further enhance the worries expressed by the US automakers which have been keen on calling for a modification of the fuel economy standards set to be introduced by 2025. The CAFE regulation calls for a fleet wide average fuel economy of 54.5 mpg by 2025. But the conundrum is also triggered by the carmakers themselves – they have been pushing numerous new crossovers, sport utility vehicles and pickups to the market to take advantage of the consumer love for these types of vehicles. Meanwhile, smaller and more efficient models have fallen out of favor, with sales of passenger cars being outstripped on a monthly basis by the light trucks.

Via Automotive News