Skip to comments.Fuel-economy standards will pinch consumers (Replacing Steel with Aluminum to Comply w/Cafe EPA Std.
Posted on 08/02/2012 4:42:32 PM PDT by Red Steel
DEMOCRATS like to portray themselves as defenders of science, but their pursuit of a green environmental agenda often involves goals that defy the laws of physics. Take the fuel-economy standards the Obama administration pushed through in 2011. Those regulations require the U.S. vehicle fleet to average 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.
Even with advances in engineering, that goal is daunting. The power required to move something as massive as an American vehicle (full-size trucks weigh between 7,500 and 12,000 pounds) at high speeds necessitates burning a little fuel.
Consider this: Many 2012 model motorcycles don't get 54.5 miles per gallon, according to www.totalmotorcycle.com. Even if they did, we doubt many families are willing to have mom and dad double up on a motorcycle and ride flying down the Interstate with junior riding the handlebars just to satisfy liberal notions of environmental progress.
This leaves auto manufacturers in a quandary. In response, Ford is trying to develop an F-150 truck with a largely aluminum body. That could prove a tough sell. Many truck buyers, recalling what happens when their 5-year-old stomps a pop can, may be hesitant to drive an aluminum vehicle when high-speed collisions with deer and other cars aren't uncommon. Aluminum will also increase the cost of the vehicle, since it's more expensive than steel. So truck drivers may pay more for the opportunity to feel less secure.
Ironically, the new fuel standards could also increase consumption of electricity generated by the coal plants that environmentalists love to hate. Car plants use magnets to move steel sheets, but electricity-guzzling vacuums are needed to move aluminum.
Other automakers are pursing a different tack. The Wall Street Journal reports that General Motors will try to meet the new fuel standards by producing two different trucks. One will be a traditional full-size model appealing to customers who, well, drive trucks. The other will be a smaller truck with better gas mileage appealing to government bean counters.
The new fuel standards may result in production of small trucks that few want to buy in order to meet an arbitrary fuel standard. You'd think environmentalists would be appalled by that waste of materials and power.
With its fuel-economy standard, the Obama administration is not only trying to defy the laws of science, but also punish American consumers who prefer the safety and power of a larger vehicle to the fuel-efficiency and explode-on-impact qualities of the 1970s Ford Pinto.
MIT economist Christopher Knittel determined the average fuel economy of automobiles sold in the United States rose about 15 percent between 1980 and 2006, but the average curb weight increased 26 percent and horsepower jumped 107 percent. Put simply, Americans accept a loss in fuel economy in exchange for a comfortable ride in relative safety.
Instead of trying to punish millions of Americans for wanting a vehicle with passenger space and enough power to top a hill, we'd suggest an alternative to the Obama administration: Let consumers decide what type of vehicles they want to drive. And to increase fuel supplies, why not increase domestic drilling? Sadly, with this administration, that may be more of a pipe dream than the 54.5 mpg fuel standard
If this crap doesn’t make it, BIG TIME, into the general public before the election, then we don’t deserve the White House.
The enviro-whackjobs are getting nostalgic for such automotive masterpieces as the Chevy Chevette.
It is possible to make a car so light that it wants to become airborne above 40 MPH. There is a limit as to how light a car can be.
Anybody who want to buy a f-150 will be required to also buy one of Japanese mini trucks with a two cylinder engine...to average out the mileage. Just throw away the little one or give it to some hippy.
We’ll have to leave 4 lengths between cars to stop in time.
Not if you increase the down force via an ugly spoiler.
Downforce = drag
Drag = less fuel economy
According to the government CAFE standards kill people. Every raise in CAFE standards kills more people.
Where is Hank Rierdon when you need him?
Needless to say Ford will not look at the “MyT” moter that could get that level of performance..
“If it saves just one life...” doesn’t apply to CAFE standards either.
So when it comes to it what are you going to do?
Choice 1 The full size steel bodied F-150 at 3X the price
Choice 2 The all aluminum Deathtrap
Choice 3 The Little Dyke Truck (AKA S-10 or Saturn equivlenet)
Choice 4 Keep the 15 year old F150 running as long as possible.
It’s going to take the next administration some time to unravel and kill this junk. The bad news is that a lot of the damage is done, and it is permanent. Even if Romney wins and (darned unlikely) has this rescinded the day of the inauguration, the manufacturers know that every four years, they could be in trouble again. Same story with coal mining and coal-fired generating plants. Those are gone, permanently.
Carter might have been a hopeless idiot leader, but I really don’t think that he did nearly as much damage to the country as what we see now. This administration was brilliant - maybe too brilliant. I think it was planned in advance by others, frankly.
i wish theyd just decree that cars must be powered by a flux capacitor and/or run on canned corn...it would be more honest...
You wont be surprised but Romney has in the past said he believes in ‘human-caused climate change’.
Fortunately his private fleet of personal jets and luxury cars will be exempt..Just us.
” government douchebags, especially progressive commie government douchebags, believe in *science* and technology to the point of mandating the when and how much we have by law...”
Yet we stand for it. Time to fight back.
Already in the ballpark - 53.3 MPG. There are a few sedans sold in Europe that have similar economy. It's easier to there because the emissions regs are different.