Average fuel economy of new vehicles sold in Feb up 18% from October 2007
05 March 2012
The average sales-weighted fuel economy of new vehicles sold in the US in February was 23.7 mpg US (9.93 L/100km), according to data from the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI)—up 18% from the value in October 2007 (the first month of UMTRI monitoring).
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The Eco-Driving Index (EDI)—an index that estimates the average monthly emissions generated by an individual US driver—stood at 0.87 in December 2011 (an improvement of 13% from October 2007). The EDI takes into account both vehicle fuel economy and distance driven (the latter relying on data that are published with a two-month lag).
Some 13% over 5 years or about 2.3%/year. It is not bad but not enough because most of it was probably due to the current economic recession and less distance traveled. It may reverse if the economy picks up and people start to travel more and buy larger 7+ seat vehicles.
Posted by: HarveyD | 05 March 2012 at 09:18 AM
Most households could do a lot better. Mine went from ~650 gallons of gas a year to about 200 gallons of gas and 2500 kWh of electricity by selling a 22 mpg vehicle and getting a LEAF. The other car is a 45 mpg Prius.
The Prius used to get twice the miles of the other car - now we drive the LEAF more and the Prius less, total annual miles on both are similar.
Eventually would like to replace the Prius with a PHEV of some sort - just waiting for the right package. Should be able to cut gasoline usage by another 50% even if it only has 11 miles EV range like the the Prius plug-in since many of the miles are still done in short trips.
Posted by: Dave R | 05 March 2012 at 10:01 AM
You have the right ideas, I wish more people in the U.S. thought like you do. Imagine not only $5 gasoline, but you can not always get it when and where you want to. Now imagine you have a plug in car and can go about your business no matter what. Not a bad decision.
Posted by: SJC | 05 March 2012 at 10:20 AM
With more people like Dave, we will see some tipping point. Already oil refineries are closing. When gas stations start closing, there will be a real rush for Electrics. That may be several years, but it is coming.
Posted by: JMartin | 05 March 2012 at 10:51 AM
I read a comment that said there was over capacity for refineries on the east coast of the U.S. They should probably shut down two but are shutting down three refineries.
They are also shutting down two in Europe. I do not know what this mean except in the context of supply and demand. Less supply with increaing demand means higher prices.
Posted by: SJC | 05 March 2012 at 11:08 AM
Imagine what would have happened if higher gasoline taxes were implemented when oil prices were much lower, maybe in the early 1990s when oil was around $20/barrel. The higher gasoline prices would have pushed everyone towards more efficient cars, and we would be much better prepared to deal with energy problems today.
Unfortunately this opportunity was missed, and we are where we are. But the article pretty much proves higher gasoline taxed would have worked.
Posted by: D | 05 March 2012 at 01:18 PM
Yes, but higher gas taxes will not happen in the U.S. for obvious reasons. I think it is much more likely that we will see $5 gasoline before we see higher gas taxes.
Posted by: SJC | 05 March 2012 at 01:27 PM
D is right. It is better to have taxes in the coffers of your own government than dollars in the pockets of oil barons.
Until this day it completely eludes me why people (especially Americans) can't see this simple mechanism. Probably they distrust their own government more than the unstable and unfriendly regimes where their oil is coming from.
Posted by: Arne | 06 March 2012 at 05:25 AM
Anne, it's the old litany of "it'll hurt the poor!" with the new refrain of "No new taxes" courtesy of Grover Norquist.
Posted by: Engineer-Poet | 06 March 2012 at 07:09 AM
For some reason GCC is eating my posts.
Posted by: ai_vin | 07 March 2012 at 10:58 AM
Maybe it's the link I gave, I'll try another. Something else that will hurt the poor; http://www.lightrailnow.org/news/n_bulletins_2012.htm
Follow the links and read the comments.
Posted by: ai_vin | 07 March 2012 at 11:01 AM