U.S. auto fleet hits record high fuel efficiency in 2017

Automobiles are shown for sale at a car dealership in Carlsbad, California
FILE PHOTO: Automobiles are shown for sale at a car dealership in Carlsbad, California, U.S. May 2, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Blake

March 6, 2019

(Reuters) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Wednesday that the average fuel efficiency of cars and trucks hit a new record high in the 2017 model year at 24.9 miles per gallon, but said the report showed there are “legitimate concerns” about the industry’s ability to meet rising annual requirements.

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said “there are legitimate concerns about the ability to cost-effectively achieve the Obama Administration’s standards in the near future” and he noted that just 3 out of 13 major automakers met the 2017 requirements without using credits. In August, the EPA and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration unveiled a proposal to freeze fuel economy requirements at 2020 levels through 2026.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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