Motor Vehicle Fuel Efficiency

Trump Kills Money-Saving MPG Standards

Administration Breaks Promise of Fuel Savings to American Families

Washington, D.C. — In response to the EPA/DOT plan to freeze the highly-popular, cost-saving fuel economy standards at their 2020 level, Jack Gillis, Executive Director of the Consumer Federation of America and author of The Car Book, issued the following statements:

A Broken Promise:

“Rolling back our miles-per-gallon standards is a broken promise to the American people. Families cannot afford to spend more money at the pump. These standards protect consumers from rollercoaster gas prices that are already on their way up again (20% in the last year). Households don’t have a choice in what they pay at the pump so they need fuel efficient choices at the dealership, whether it’s a car, truck or SUV. Denying families fuel savings will wreak havoc on household finances.”

Short Sighted Action Will Hurt U.S. Car Makers:

CFA’s recent analysis clearly shows automakers are on the road to achieving the standards. Halting this progress at 2020 – half a decade before we’ll see the full benefits of the standards —will roll the American auto industry back to the days of the last fuel price spike when lots full of unsold vehicles allowed foreign carmakers, with their fuel–sipping vehicles, to reap the sales while the taxpayers had to bail them out.”

Blaming Roll Backs on Safety is Flat Out Wrong:

Our latest report completely refutes the Administration’s flat-out wrong rationale for rolling back the standards. Safety is up, fuel economy is up and sales are up. Not only does fuel savings cover the cost of fuel efficient technology, but it also covers all of the other costs that go into automakers annual price increases, including new safety features. The truth is that today’s “all-new” vehicles are the safest, most efficient, most desirable cars, trucks and SUVs in history, and consumers are responding by buying them in record numbers. When it comes to protection for your family and fuel savings, you don’t have to choose. Fuel efficiency makes safety affordable.”

Fuel Efficient Trucks and SUVs Sell More:

“Families and workers that need larger vehicles will be hurt the most by this rollback. We’ve seen how improvements in these vehicles has made them more desirable, increasing sales for automakers. CFA’s analysis of vehicle sales shows that popular SUVs, which have increased their MPGs by 15 percent, sell far better than those who had less than a 15 percent improvement. MPG standards have been a win-win for the people who need bigger cars and, ironically, for the automakers who sell them.”

Putting Corporations Before People:

“The American public does not want these standards rolled back. Survey after survey shows that consumers want higher fuel efficiency standards that save them money. CFA’s latest survey provides indisputable evidence that consumers strongly support them. To roll back fuel efficiency standards is to prioritize corporate lobbyists’ wish lists over the needs of American families, who want, and are happy to buy, safe, attractive and efficient vehicles that go farther on every gallon of increasingly expensive gas.”

Revoking States’ Rights:

“Revoking states’ rights guaranteed under the Clean Air Act, in place since 1975, goes against the will of twelve states and DC representing 113 million Americans and over a third of the automotive market, that have chosen to bring cost-saving, efficient cars to their communities.”

Good Jobs Will Be At Risk:

“Tragically, good manufacturing jobs across the country will be at risk with this rollback. Jobs could be lost if the Detroit again cedes market share to foreign car companies that are better equipped to meet increasing global demand for more fuel efficient cars.”

Contact: Jack Gillis, 202-939-1018; Christina Heartquist, 415-453-0430