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New Federal CAFE standards officially released, 34.1 mpg by 2016

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New Federal CAFE standards officially released, 34.1 mpg by 2016

by Jeremy Korzeniewski (RSS feed) on Apr 1st 2010 at 1:38PM

We knew it was coming. Today, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency jointly released new federal Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) fuel mileage and greenhouse gas emissions requirements that will cover the 2012 through 2016 model years. The estimated fleet-wide fuel economy standard has been set at 34.1 miles per gallon by 2016, though improvements in air conditioning systems will bring that number up to around 35 mpg. That equals a standard of roughly 250 grams of carbon dioxide per mile.

The overall fleet fuel mileage requirement will be an average between both passenger cars and light trucks, and NHTSA is predicting that the 2012 numbers will be 33.3 for cars and 25.4 for trucks in 2012, rising to 37.8 for cars and 28.8 for trucks by 2016. As before, credits will be dished out for vehicles that can run on E85 (ethanol), though automakers will need to prove their cars are running on the alcohol fuel by 2015 to continue earning those credits.

Smaller volume automakers that sold fewer that 400,000 cars in 2009 will get a break on the requirements while "specialty automakers" such as BMW and Porsche will reportedly get longer lead-in times. Automakers will also get some sort of incentive for the first 200,000 plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles built by 2016. These standards are said to be equivalent to taking 58 million cars off our nation's roads for a year, representing a savings of 1.8 billion barrels of oil.

Naturally, all of this is going to cost some extra dough. If the Feds are right, automakers will spend $51.5 billion over the next five years putting the standards into effect and the average price of a new car will rise by $985 by 2016. Savings, though, are expected to be even greater, with the average consumer will net an extra $3,000 in their wallets per in fuel savings over the life of the vehicle.



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New federal fuel economy and emissions rules passed

04/01/2010, 2:00 PMBY MARK KLEIS

The Obama administration has officially set its newer, tougher fuel efficiency standards for all new cars and trucks between 2012 and 2016. The new standards will cost automakers over $50 billion during the same period.

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Obama administration have joined forces to release a comprehensive new set of regulations that will sharply increase national standards for fuel economy.

The changes are met with mixed emotions as automakers welcome the uniformity of a national standard, no longer forced to cater to the special demands of states like California, but are also faced with a drastic change in fuel economy requirements for their fleets. The new standards include an EPA regulated emission output of 250 grams of carbon dioxide per mile for vehicles sold in 2016 – a figure that will be equal to expected output by vehicles that match the 34.1 mpg standard. This EPA regulation comes as the EPA issued its first ever rules on greenhouse gas emissions by vehicles.

“This is a significant step towards cleaner air and energy efficiency, and an important example of how our economic and environmental priorities go hand-in-hand,” said Lisa Jackson, EPA Administrator, in a statement.

The addition of the new national standards are expected to raise an estimated $434 in costs for new vehicles in 2012, a figure that will jump to $926 per vehicle in 2016, according to Fox News. NHTSA and the EPA insist that despite higher costs for vehicles, consumers will save more than $3,000 in fuel savings over the life of the vehicle due to the increased fuel efficiency.

“These historic new standards set ambitious, but achievable, fuel economy requirements for the automotive industry that will also encourage new and emerging technologies,” said transportation secretary Ray LaHood in a statement. “We will be helping American motorists save money at the pump, while putting less pollution in the air.”

According to Detroit News, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, which represents the Detroit Big Three, Toyota and seven other automotive groups released statements praising the new rules.

The praise comes as automakers can finally develop a set of vehicles based on a single national standard, as opposed to producing unique vehicles for states with emissions policies that go beyond the national standard.



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Feds set fuel economy rules to an average 34.1 mpg by 2016

David Shepardson / Detroit News Washington Bureau

New York -- The Obama administration unveiled a landmark regulation setting fuel efficiency standards and tailpipe emissions limits -- a move that will save 1.8 billion barrels of oil and reshape what Americans drive.

The 1,469-page joint final regulation from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Environmental Protection Agency sets estimated average fleet-wide fuel economy requirements at 34.1 mpg by 2016. The reason it isn't 35 mpg is because automakers can use air conditioning improvement credits to meet part of the requirements for the 2012-2016 model years.

The regulation predicts the higher requirements will cost automakers $51.5 billion over five years and add $985 to the price of an average vehicle in 2016.

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson called it a "victory for automakers" and for drivers. Automakers will get certainty as they plan to meet new tough requirements and will meet just one standard for all states.

But the government says the total value to society in reduced gasoline use and lower emissions will be about $240 billion, so the net benefit is about $190 billion.

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, the trade group representing Detroit's Big Three, Toyota Motor Corp. and seven others, praised the announcement. But it wants the government to start working on the rules for 2017 and beyond.

"America needs a roadmap to reduced dependence on foreign oil and greenhouse gases, and only the federal government can play this role," said Dave McCurdy, president & CEO of the alliance. "The national program announced today makes sense for consumers, for government policymakers and for automakers."

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said "post 2016 work will begin as soon as the ink is dry."

NHTSA predicts that passenger cars will have to average 33.3 mpg in 2012, a figure that rises to 37.8 mpg in 2016.

Light trucks, including SUVS, pickups and vans, will be required to average 25.4 mpg in 2012 and 28.8 mpg by 2016. The numbers were agreed to last May by automakers, the White House and the state of California to create a national program. But after 2016, California and a dozen other states could impose their own rules.

The new regulation allows automakers to get credits for building vehicles that run on E85 or gasoline -- known as flex-fuel vehicles -- until 2015. But after that, it must show the alternative fuel is being used to get credits.

The regulation also finalizes a deal to allow specialty automakers such as Porsche and BMW, which often have paid fines rather than meet the requirements, get a longer lead-in time.

Automakers that sold fewer than 400,000 vehicles in 2009, will be able to meet a less stringent greenhouse gas standard. That will be limited to up to 100,000 vehicles total, spread over 2012-2015.

"They are not getting a pass at all," Jackson said.

The EPA is providing temporary incentives to encourage the commercialization of plug-in electric hybrids and electric vehicles. In the final rule, the agency capped the number of vehicles that qualify at up to 200,000 per manufacturer during 2012-2016 model years.

The government counts those as having zero emissions, even though they actually have indirect emissions to account for the production of electricity.

The government says the costs to automakers are heaviest in the final years. It predicts the 2012 model year will cost the industry $4.9 billion in product development costs, compared to $15.6 billion in 2016.

The cost estimates are lower than the initial $60 billion over five years and $1,300 per car. They were reduced because of better data, Jackson said.

From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20100401/AUTO01/4010450/1148/Feds-set-fuel-economy-rules-to-an-average-34.1-mpg-by-2016#ixzz0jtpHmP3Q

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