The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has abandoned the 54.5-mpg CAFE Standard.
Although automakers have the tools to meet the 54.5-mpg corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) Standard originally set for the 2025 model year, the increase in SUV and crossover sales points to the industry failing to meet that figure. In a statement released by the government agencies, they acknowledged that automakers are “adopting fuel economy technologies at unprecedented rates” and that they will be able to meet standards with improvements in standard gasoline engines, and won’t need to rely heavily on sales of hybrids or electric cars.
Despite all that, the government has abandoned the 54.5-mpg goal now that lower gas prices have increased demand for SUVs, crossovers and light trucks. And since the fleet averages are sales-weighted, the advances in fuel economy technology aren’t properly reflected.
Senior administration officials said that the 54.5-mpg goal was never a mandate, but more of an estimate on where the industry could be by the 2025 model year. The estimate was based on the assumption that 67 percent of vehicles on the market would be cars and 33 percent would be SUVs, crossovers, pickups or light trucks. The government now estimates that the overall fleet average fuel economy by 2025 will be around 50 to 52.6 mpg.
[Source: Automotive News]
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