US: eco vehicles impacted by declining gasoline prices image

Many people opt for the pricier alternative-fuel vehicles to also benefit from the lower fuel consumption, not just to save the planet. But now, as gas prices are dropping everywhere across the US, who needs them anymore?

Toyota, for example, the world’s largest automaker and also the biggest auto power when it comes to hybrids, has seen a surge in demand for SUVs and light trucks – with a consequential decline in interest for the make’s Prius lineup. The price gap between hybrid cars and traditional fueled models is even harder to swallow now, as US buyers can get gasoline as low as $2.70 a gallon. You really need to be an eco-conscious buyer today to opt for the car that would take forever to recuperate its difference.

According to the AAA, gasoline prices last week alone fell 10 cents a gallon, reaching on Friday a national average price of $3.14 per gallon – the lowest figure since February 2011. The fuel prices usually decline during the fall, but this year’s tendency is supported – according to analysts and economists – by the rising US oil production, a drop in worldwide oil demand and more efficient new cars and trucks. The drop in demand for eco cars could also affect the smaller traditional cars, which were developed in anticipation of higher gas prices and stricter fuel economy standards.

Via Automotive News