The average fuel economy of new vehicles sold in the U.S. dropped to 24.9 mpg in December 2015.
The average fuel economy of vehicles sold in 2015 was 25.3 mpg, down 0.1 mpg compared to 2014, according to data from researchers Michael Sivak and Brandon Schoettle of the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute. December fuel economy is down 0.2 mpg from November as the price of gasoline continues to drop nationwide. In addition, car shoppers are opting for more pickup trucks, crossovers and SUVs thanks to the cheaper gas prices.
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Fuel economy reached its peak in August 2014 at 25.8 mpg, but December’s figure is still a 4.8-mpg increase compared to October 2007, the first month that Sivak and Schoettle began monitoring the data.
December 2015 also marked the first month that the average fuel economy of new vehicles sold dropped below 25 mpg since January 2014. According to recent sales data, total light-truck sales were up 19 percent in December and 13 percent in 2015.
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