Vehicle Fuel Economy Outlook Till 2025
The Environment Protection Agency (EPA), California regulators and automobile industry representatives has come to an agreement on fuel economy and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions limits for vehicle production years 2017 through 2025 vehicles. The Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFÉ) will elevate from 35.5 miles per gallon (MPG) at the end of 2016 to a 5% annual increase with a lower standard for light-duty trucks to 54.5 miles per gallon (MPG) by 2025. This will give the United States a national standard for CO2 emissions and fuel economy.
The EPA and NHTSA are drafting regulations to include this fuel economy information on new vehicle window stickers. A new addition will be the amount of carbon dioxide the vehicle emits into the atmosphere. Carbon dioxide is a recognized greenhouse gas. The proposal is to use a 10 point scale rating to inform the buyer of the fuel economy and greenhouse gasses. These additions are targeted to be on 2013 new vehicles windows stickers.
This article will attempt to examine the benefits to consumers using a ten (10) gallon fuel tank and the standard yearly 15,000 miles traveled. We will use a fuel price of $3.50 a gallon in the first model and $7.00 a gallon for fuel in the second model. The third discussion will be a 5% increase model.
First model is 35.5 miles to the gallon vehicle; standard 15,000 miles a year traveled, and paying an average of $3.50 a gallon. 15,000 miles divided by 35.5 miles per gallon is 423 gallons of fuel used over the miles traveled. If we take 423 gallons of fuel usage and multiply this by $3.50 a gallon to arrive at our estimated annual fuel cost of $1,480.50. Our average fuel cost for ten gallons of fuel is $35.50.
Second model is 54.5 miles to the gallon vehicle; standard 15,000 miles traveled, and paying an average of $7.00 a gallon. 15,000 divided by 54.5 miles per gallon is 275 gallons of fuel used over the miles traveled. If we take 275 gallons of fuel usage and multiply this by $7.00 a gallon to arrive at our estimated annual fuel cost of $1,925.00. Our average fuel cost for 10 gallons of fuel is $70.00.
This third model is looking at a 5% percent increase in fuel economy each year versus the price increase of fuel per year. Simple math states; “to make a gain in one area, the other area must have less of a gain.” If fuel economy rises each year by 5% and fuel cost rises by 5% then they cancel each other out. If fuel economy rises and fuel prices stabilize then consumers get ahead.
As we analyze these three models the better fuel economy is offset by the cost of fuel doubling from $3.50 to $7.00 a gallon or fuel cost rising in percentage equal to MPG gains by vehicle. This data was based off of the current fuel price trends over the last 10 years conducted by the author. If the price of fuel stays lower then these models predicts the fuel cost savings get better. The consumer needs better fuel economy and a cheaper fuel source to get us back on the road! Yes, we can go farther with less fuel but that doesn’t always equate to less expense. Just think 423 gallons a year times $7.00 a gallon equals $2,961.00 dollars in fuel usage at 35.5 MPG. With the average wage being $10.00 an hour it is unlikely for someone in that wage market to afford a vehicle.