ICCT calculates consumer benefits of increased efficiency in 2025-2030 light-duty vehicles in the US
A new report from the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) estimates Consumer benefits of increased efficiency in 2025-2030 light-duty vehicles in the US.
According to the analysis, under current standards, buyers of model year 2025 vehicles would fully recoup the extra cost for technology in the vehicle in the third year of ownership under a cash-purchase scenario. Those who finance their vehicles will see a net positive cash flow—again, specific to the additional cost of technology—starting immediately. Consumer benefits would be more than 3 times the costs of the standards. Fuel savings are 2.4 times the costs if fuel prices stay low for the next several decades.
The ICCT analysts applied the technology cost results from the March 2017 ICCT report Efficiency technology and cost assessment for US 2025–2030 light-duty vehicles to a consumer-impact analysis.
The report estimates the direct fuel-saving benefits to buyers of model year 2025 and 2030 vehicles under four sets of targets:
The adopted 2025 targets against a baseline of 2021 targets, as reflected in the most recent assessment by EPA.
4%, 5%, and 6% compounded annual reductions in CO2 targets for cars and light trucks for 2026–2030, compared against vehicles that meet the adopted 2025 targets.
The authors evaluated each of these sets of targets according to three measures of consumer benefits: payback period; lifetime fuel savings; and consumer benefit-to-cost ratio.
Consumer benefits were also evaluated under low, reference, and high fuel prices. The report did not assess the non-consumer benefits of adopted 2025 standards—e.g., greenhouse gas emission mitigation, energy security, and health benefits.
The analysis found that consumer benefits are available across vehicle types, from cars to light trucks.
The average new car fuel economy label would increase from 35 mpg in 2021 to 41 mpg in 2025 under the adopted standards, and to 52 mpg in 2030 assuming improvements of 5%/year—each of these steps would save consumers $2,300–$2,600 in fuel costs over the lifetime of the vehicle. For trucks, the average fuel economy would increase from 25 mpg in 2021, to 30 mpg in 2025, to 38 mpg in 2030—each step would save consumers $3,900–$4,000 in fuel costs per vehicle.