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Reports reveal both US and Europe becoming more fuel economy conscious

Both the USA and Europe are paying more attention to the fuel efficiency of their vehicles, according to two separate reports.

The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) released an analysis entitled "On the Road to 54.5mpg: A Progress Report on Achievability" looking at how consumers and carmakers are adopting to the new federal fuel economy standard. Meanwhile, the European Environment Agency (EEA) has released a report showing a nine per cent improvement in fuel economy in the average car sold in Europe during 2012 compared to three years earlier.Exhaust Emissions

Let's look at each report individually:

CFA Report: A nationwide poll revealed that 85 per cent "support" the new federal standards, with 54 per cent giving it "strong" backing.

According to the survey, more than half the respondents intend to next purchase an SUV: and want fuel economy to at least reach 25mpg. Indeed those who indicated that current mileage is 24mpg want their next model to report at least a seven mpg increase.

The report reveals that the percentage of vehicles sold getting at least 30mpg has tripled in the USA over the last few years. Indeed from 2009 to 2012, the percentage of vehicles achieving this figure leapt from four to 12 per cent. Meanwhile, the percentage of popular vehicles achieving at least 23mpg increased from 30 per cent to 56 per cent; while those achieving less than 22mpg dropped from 70 to 44 per cent.

Jack Gillis, a co-author of the report, commented that the increasing mileage is partly due to the decision of automakers to improve the fuel economy of new series vehicles. Indeed, each year from 2010-2013, average fuel economy increased by 2.2mpg for each new series vehicle compared to the previous series.

EEA Report: According to the EEA's "Monitoring CO2 emissions from new passenger cars in the EU", average CO2 emissions fell by 2.6 per cent from 2011 to 2012.

Among its key findings were that 12million new cars were sold in 2012: down from 15.5million at its peak in 2007; and diesel vehicles now represent 55 per cent of the newly registered vehicle fleet: they traditionally have lower CO2 emissions than their petrol counterparts although they can emit higher levels of other pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide.

The figures also revealed that the lowest CO2 emissions per kilometre were in Denmark at 117g/km and Portugal at 118g/km. By contrast, the highest emissions were in Latvia at 152g/km and Estonia at 150g/km, with Hungary and Belgium the only EU member states where cars sold in 2012 were less efficient on average than those sold during the previous year.

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Paul Lucas

Filed under: Latest News, Green cars, Green credentials

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