Auto Industry Pushes Responsibility to Drivers

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers launched an initiative called “EcoDriving” yesterday, to educate Americans about how to reduce fuel consumption and cut carbon dioxide emissions by changing driving habits. Amy Corsinita, an Alliance spokeswoman, told HybridCars.com, “The program helps drivers achieve the highest gas mileage available from every single vehicle on the road, regardless of size and age.” California and Colorado are the first states to formally support this consumer awareness program, with Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger spearheading the endorsement.

The initiative was met with skepticism by environmentalists, who assert that the campaign throws a smoke screen over the industry’s slow move toward fuel-saving vehicles. “Providing drivers tips on how to improve their fuel economy is helpful, but the industry needs to be doing a lot more than this,” said Jim Kleisch, senior engineer with the Union of Concerned Scientists, in an interview with Hybridcars.com. “Consumers need cleaner and substantially more fuel-efficient vehicles on the showroom floors, and until that happens, our economy and our environment are going to suffer.”

The “EcoDriving” program describes a set of best practices for driving and maintenance, allowing a typical car owner to increase fuel economy by approximately 15 percent. Driving and operation practices include: utilizing proper braking techniques, driving at optimum speeds, making the best use of synchronized traffic lights, and deciding when it makes sense to use air conditioning. On the maintenance side, the advice tackles issues such as choosing which motor oil to use, as well as understanding the effects of tire pressure.

Much of the information provided is common sense. The idea is for motorists to begin shrinking their carbon footprint immediately without having to buy a new fuel-efficient vehicle, or wait years on the development of breakthrough technology.


  • Boom Boom

    I know everybody hates this solution but step 1: Refute Sammy Haggar and drive 55.

    The EcoDriving puts it way down on step 6, but it is by far the easiest and most effective way to save gas. Plus it has the added benefit of saving lives. Time is money, but speed wastes/kills.

    (And yes, yes, there are a limited number of cars out there that actually get peak MPG at higher than 55 mph, but the vast, vast majority do not.)

  • Bryce

    Each car has its own sweet spot. Watch your RPMs at different velocities and you can find it. Mine seems to be between 65 and 70. Whenever I am going 50ish. I never get 30 mpg like I should. Find your sweet spot. : )

  • Samie

    Scam, Scam, Scam
    This is merely an attempt to keep government regulators of the the backs of the auto industry.

    Conservation is always important but no matter how effective their awareness program is people will find their own comfort levels. And should’nt these things be taught in drivers ed or on state driving tests? As a consumer not a envirnmentalist its saddens me to see this type of nonsense.

    And yes I’m sure you will debate the role of personal responsibility of consumers but that won’t change anything. Car companies should be held to higher standards and the politicians should stop patting themselves on the back like they actually changed something.

  • Boom Boom

    Bryce, man, I hate to disagree again, but….
    The optimum efficiency for a car has a small fraction to do with RPM and a giant fraction to do with aerodynamics. If you have a very aerodynamic car with a really powerful engine (say a corvette) you may get your optimum mileage up around 70 mph, but most sedans/minivans/wagons are going to be lower than that. SUVs and Trucks are all lower than that.

    http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/driveHabits.shtml

    http://www.mpgforspeed.com/
    (This website shows a graph with real-world data. Everything from a BMW 5 series, to Prius and a VW Golf goes down down down above 55 mph.)

    Do the test yourself. Drive 100 miles at 55 and 100 miles at 70. Get back with hard, honest numbers.

    The sweet spot for many cars may actually be lower than 55 mph, but the faster you go the faster the drop. At some point there is a trade off and if we, as a nation, are serious about conservation, we need to talk about where that trade off is.

    But first we need to stop pretending that most cars get optimum MPG at 65/70 mph. That is simply not true.

  • Need2Change

    Rather than drive at 45 mph, I drive at 90 mph to get off the road in half the time — and therefore saving money and fuel by using the engine only half as much! I can also turn off the engine and coast for a mile without burning any fuel. In essence, operating with zero polution for the last mile. :)

    By the way, I agree that the Ecodriving is a scam by the auto industry. The industry (including Japan) needs to build better cars.

  • Armand

    “”to educate Americans about how to reduce fuel consumption and cut carbon dioxide emissions by changing driving habits. “”

    BOY OH BOY…do they have an uphill battle to fight.

    It’s going to be next to impossible to change the minds of current folk in this country. Ego, self-righteousness, and arrogance are the toughest traits to overcome.

    The only way this will happen is for the entire current targeted population to have a turn over and raise the new crop with some self-responsibility and respect for others in mind.

  • Bryce

    That’s ok Boom Boom, we can disagree without being disagreeable.
    : ) My Sedan is a ’98 Chrysler Concorde with the 3.2L V6. Usually returns above 30 mpg on the highway. If you google the vehicle, you can see that it is pretty sleek without any jagged edges. Got it used and have really enjoyed it. (first car) Really hugs the road and has some solid pep and umph behind it, especially compared to my moms Suburban, lol. Better mileage too, though it certainly doesn’t compare to the littler vehicles in that department. (somehow though, I think I would prefer it over the little 20 year old civic in the student parking lot that some other kids drive.) Admittedly though, back to the sweet spot conversation, the only time I am going around 50 on the freeway is when there is traffic and it is nearly stop and go with decelleration to 20 or 30 and then back to 50 and down and up and down and up……………….

  • Boom Boom

    Need2Change.. what part of miles per gallon do you not understand? MPG is not measured by time in any way.

    I’m sure you probably understand this, but since you think changing driving habits is a scam, you obviously can’t grasp basic automotive engineering and see that a Prius at 90 mph gets worse gas mileage than an 1995 Corrolla at 55 mph (despite all the improvements in the car). The auto industry is not going to magically build us a 7 passenger SUV that gets 100 mpg and has 400 hp. We are part of the problem. We need to be part of the solution.

  • Elliot

    You always get better gas mileage at a slower speed….within reason….comparing apples to apples. I used to have a Corolla GTS when I was young. Probably got 30ish on the highway. On a trip to Atlanta I was forced to drive behind my girlfriend’s parents who were pulling a U-haul trailer and would not exceed 50mph. This was excruciating, but resulted in about 40-45 mpg on the highway.

    Now, there are ALWAYS exceptions….windows open windows closed….drop a gear….etc etc. But apples to apples, you are better off driving more slowly.

  • Boom Boom

    I’ll let Noz be the disagreeable one. He’s much better at it, and far more entertaining. I’m just trying to be rational.

    P.S. I didn’t exactly see where you showed that your 98 Chrysler got worse MPG at 50 MPH. Obviously any car is going to have a reduction in MPG with stop and go (with the exception of some hybrids with regenerative breaking). If you honestly tell me that you’ve gone out and driven a 50 miles at 55 mph (open highway) and the the same 50 miles at 70 mph and didn’t get worse gas mileage, then I will sit down and be wrong.

    I’ve tested this with my Civic Hybrid and got 56 MPG over 200 miles at 60 mph. At 70, I got 48 mpg. It is a pretty sleek car, but is not, admittedly, named after a supersonic plane :)

    PPS Kudos to Elliot for offering a real world example of speed and MPG.

  • Bryce

    lol, sadly though, like said supersonic plane, the Concorde was cancelled in favor of the Sebring. (what is a sebring anyways…..is that some sort of fish???) Concorde sounds better to me, but maybe that is just me. Just on a few occasions when I driving on a 50 mph road, I didn’t really get the numbers I got while driving 65ish. Maybe it was just a one time thing and I have to say it was not at all a scientific experiment, just an off the cuff observation. I suppose I will experiment more with it in the future, though I am at school in the bay area now and didn’t even bother bringing the car. (no damn parking, more expensive gas, and insurance, my guess is that these bay people can’t drive) Yea, Noz is entertaining alright. Easy to egg on too. : ) Not much faith in humanity emanating from that fellow.

  • Armand

    I’m not egged on at all Bryce. I’m actually just stating what I believe in.

    You’re as entertaining to me as I am to you….trust me on that one.

    And I get around 29.7 MPG overall so far for the last 3 years. And I drive a used 2001 Ford Focus.

    With my 2000 Civic DX, I was getting 37.4 MPG overall…incredibly efficient vehicle. Unfortunately it was totaled in a hit and run incident.

  • Boom Boom

    Ah yes, I have a mad, blind love for the Civic. If they would just bring back my bloody wagon!!!

    Well, now that we’re all lovey dovey. Let’s find someone new to p*ss off.

    Where is that idiot Texan who loves Al Gore so much?

  • Hal Howell

    I just drove nearly 300 miles yesterday in my ’07 Prius at 65mph and got about 55 mpg. When I drive at 55 my mileage almost always stays around 44-46 mpg and that is with using the cruise control. Having lived through the Carter years of pain and misery with the highway 55 deal. It didn’t work, nearly everyone was driving much faster and enforcement was a pain. Not only that but if you lived in the southwest it was a real pain due to the distances involved. 55 is NOT the answer. A much more reasonable speed limit is 65 but even then you are still gong to have people driving much faster. Changing the speed limit is not the answer. Better cars, better roads and better fuels may be. Ethanol is a bust in that it takes more energy to produce than it yields. More hybrids is the only real answer for the next 20 years. Why? Electric cars are gong to be expensive novelties, fuel cells are really expensive novelties and neither have the legs a hybrid has. The Honda Clarity has a range of only 280 miles. The Volt will have a longer range than a fuel cell but less than a currant hybrid. Gasoline is still one of the best fuels for going distances. My Prius has a potential range of 654 miles at 54.7 mpg! Even the Volt can’t match that nor can the Clarity. In terms of price the Volt is now projected to cost well over $30,000 and the Clarity can only be leased(That’s because the real price is $100,000). My Prius cost only $24,000 and that was with Leather seats, Smart Entry, Smart key, back-up camera and MP3 jack for my iPod. For right now the market is just not ready for vehicles that don’t use gasoline.
    As for the environment, the Prius though not emissions free it is still a much more friendly vehicle for those who care. I bought mine because of the savings since I believe the scientists who say global warming is a hoax. However, I still want to breath clean air and the Prius does a good job of cleaning up after itself. So, it is obvious that what we need are more hybrids like the Prius and Honda efforts. They prove the Hybrid technology is mature and here to stay until the breakthroughs come that allow the next generation of affordable transportation to become mainstream.

  • Bryce

    hooray for love!!!!

    God…..this damn city of Berkeley must be getting to me. I should go punch a hobo or something.

    My friend just got a new Focus. Good fuel economy and I really enjoyed the interior and exterior styling. (beautiful dash) The one draw back I found (while on a 5 hour drive) was that it basically has NO leg room, which is quite unfortunate for those of us bigger people. (6’2″) I sat in the backseat the following week (thank God this ride was only for about 15 minutes) and it was even smaller. I was amazed to actually have difficulty fitting my foot into that thing…..literally….no kidding. besides this sad drawback, I loved the little vehicle, though it may not be the one for me when I am scoping the small car market.

  • Hal Howell

    I just drove nearly 300 miles yesterday in my ’07 Prius at 65mph and got about 55 mpg. When I drive at 55 my mileage almost always stays around 44-46 mpg and that is with using the cruise control. Having lived through the Carter years of pain and misery with the highway 55 deal. It didn’t work, nearly everyone was driving much faster and enforcement was a pain. Not only that but if you lived in the southwest it was a real pain due to the distances involved. 55 is NOT the answer. A much more reasonable speed limit is 65 but even then you are still gong to have people driving much faster. Changing the speed limit is not the answer. Better cars, better roads and better fuels may be. Ethanol is a bust in that it takes more energy to produce than it yields. More hybrids is the only real answer for the next 20 years. Why? Electric cars are gong to be expensive novelties, fuel cells are really expensive novelties and neither have the legs a hybrid has. The Honda Clarity has a range of only 280 miles. The Volt will have a longer range than a fuel cell but less than a currant hybrid. Gasoline is still one of the best fuels for going distances. My Prius has a potential range of 654 miles at 54.7 mpg! Even the Volt can’t match that nor can the Clarity. In terms of price the Volt is now projected to cost well over $30,000 and the Clarity can only be leased (That’s because the real price is $100,000). My Prius cost only $24,000 and that was with Leather seats, Smart Entry, Smart key, back-up camera and MP3 jack for my iPod. For right now the market is just not ready for vehicles that don’t use gasoline.
    As for the environment, the Prius, though not emissions free, is still a much more friendly vehicle for those who care. I bought mine because of the savings since I believe the scientists who say global warming is a hoax. However, I still want to breath clean air and the Prius does a good job of cleaning up after itself. So, it is obvious that what we need are more hybrids like the Prius and Honda efforts. They prove the Hybrid technology is mature and here to stay until the breakthroughs come that allow the next generation of affordable transportation to become mainstream.

  • Boom Boom

    Well, Hal’s information on his Prius is directly contradicted by this guy:
    http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_10032223?nclick_check=1

    He drove 55 or under and got 59 mpg. And then he got 42 mpg up at the regular highways speeds. But then nobody listens to reporters anymore.

    I have no idea about Mr. Howell. (But he seems to have already made up his mind about speed and mpg… back in the 70s and 80s he must had some pretty terrible lumbar support in his cars to be enduring so much “pain and misery” by driving 55. Maybe he just listened to too much Sammy Haggar.)

    P.S. Bryce, what is it with you and dashboards, man!! It is bordering on a fetish. I bet you loved Knight Rider and KITTs dash. That was a sweet dash.

  • Bryce

    Knightrider dash wasn’t bad, especially I guess when you consider the time it came out of.

    I just prefer the thing that I have to stare at for a long drive to look atleast half way decent. : ) Plus, the dash really contributes to the overall interior look. Obviously it isn’t a standalone thing, but nine times outa ten, if the dash looks good, the rest of the interior follows. : )

  • Armand

    The Prius is very much underappreciated. It performs FAR FAR better than most naysayers want to give it credit for.

    What the Prius needs…OR NEEDED was a sexier design. That has been the downfall of the Prius for many non-believers. It’s a scapegoat used to demonize and put down the Prius and the technology is uses.

    TRUST ME….if the Prius had Audi styling with that flashy lighting, the curves, etc etc…people would be in love with it.

  • Armand

    BRYCE:

    That’s why I liked the Fit so much…because it has ALOT more room than my Focus. Which is no small feat for a car its size.

    People your height have no issues driving in a Fit…the rear legroom is phenomenal.

    The reason I haven’t bought one is because the engine they use in it is the older style 4 cylinder engine found in the Civic I had…which pollutant-wise is not very low..it’s smog index is 0.49 compared to new cars sold this year being at 0.38.

    The next generation Fit is going to have the current Civic engine which is cleaner but doesn’t offer as good fuel mileage as the older generation.

    Ultimately, the Fit hybrid would be a wonderful alternative…but given what I’ve seen so far in regard’s to Honda’s Prius challenger, it looks awful.

  • Tom

    This is a great thing to me. The LAST thing the consumer wants to hear is “YOU NEED TO CHANGE YOUR HABITS”. No one wants any pain, it’s easy to blame it on someone else. Smaller cars were available all through the 90′s and early 2000′s. Lots of us chose SUVs and trucks. Collectively, we do need to goad the auto industry into making more efficient cars. But, if 1/3 to 1/2 of us want trucks and SUVs, some company somewhere will eventually fill that desire.

    This reminds me of the obesity trends in the USA. About 30 % of us are obese, and over 60% of us are either obese or overweight. I had a conversation with a physician where I said that if doctors could just impress on their clients/patients to eat right and exercise regular, the biggest health problems in the USA would go away. She agreed with me, and told me the story of a diabetes patient, who needed to loose 25 lbs ASAP. When she told the patient this, the patient got upset. The patient just wanted her to prescribe medicine and send her (the patient) along her merry way.

    Most Americans don’t like being told “you need to get a smaller car”. It’s tempting to do something to cure the price of gas, etc. The car companies do get the message to switch to smaller cars, because people are now buying them.

  • cj

    The only “scientists” who say that global climate change is a hoax are deep in the pockets of of the coal and oil companies. Even our anti-science, anti-environment, bought-and-paid-for-by-the-oil companies president has finally seen the light. The facts are irrefutable.

  • Bryce

    I know I know Noz, I have seen the little things around town and the interiors are nice looking and roomy. (Honda usually does well on the interiors) That argument the other day wasn’t about the Fit’s interior passenger space, but its lack of towing capacity and hauling of items in the back for those people that NEED it.

    I am sure the Fit is perfect for around town stuff, but it really wouldn’t work as we are going backpacking, all 2 dozen of us.

  • no einstein

    Isn’t there an equation that says that every time Velocity is doubled, the Energy required is squared?

  • tw8s

    Bryce, You got a stre-e-e-etch concorde that will haul 2dozen backpackers?

  • Noz

    Need2Change…

    Get the new Fit..it comes with navigation. You want leather? Spend the $1000 you’d spend getting the same option in a bigger car and put them in the Fit or Prius. They do this at the dealer all the time. It’s professional, warrantied, and as good as anything from the factory.

    You want XM? Buy a small XM receiver that can be professional installed and look like a factory install.

    Even with all these added items, you’ll spend far less than buying a bigger car.

    As far as quality of a Pruis goes, it’s as good as GLE and FAR better than anything Chrysler can possibly make.

  • Boom Boom

    Mr. Change,
    At least we’re in agreement on the MPG/Speed thing. I beleive the phrase is “you can’t have your cake and eat it too”. If you want a big, powerful car, you’re going to always have to use more energy to move it around (whether you drive 55 or 95). The car industry can’t defy physics.

    As for the luxuries, I think Noz made good points that basically most of the things you mentioned can be added after the fact for not much money. Best Buy sells most of the (Navigation, Radio, etc) and could outfit anything from a 93 Tercel to an 09 Escalade with the whole shootin’ match for less than 1,000 for top of the line stuff. They’d probably even get you some 10″ subs to impress the teens. (I don’t think Nissan or Chrysler have those in stock.)

    The point of the article above (and the industry support for it) is that tomorrow, we could all improve our mileage by 20% or more, if we just changed our driving habits. Keep your big car! Just slow down and you’ll save gas. You’ll get there an hour or two later on a long ride, but you’ll have heated seats and XM to keep you happy along the way. (And maybe you can help Mr. Howell out with his terribly uncomfortable car at 55 mph.) That said, if we all got smaller cars AND drove 55, well then we’d save even more.

    I’m not defending the auto industry. They’ve should take plenty of blame for building big, guzzling cars for the last 20 years. But we bought those same cars, and thus we take just as much responsibility. We’ve had choices.

  • John Sturgess

    As the ultimate in DECISION MAKING we the consumer should JUMP ON BOARD with this new Proposal by California and Colorado created by lobbyist payed by the Auto Industry. Lets take the initiative in getting better gas mileage by being more involved in how we drive. The Automakers make a valid Point its up to the Drivers to do the right thing. Because as Consumers in the USA we know from past history we cant trust the Govt to create standards the Auto industry follows other wise we would have not gone through the Clinton era of 8 years and now the Bush era of 8 years with out any raising of the MPG STANDARDS.

    Imagine if they just raised the MPG ONE STINKING MPG per year

    the past 16 years of CLINTON/BUSH.
    SO thanks to the Lobbyist funded and payed for by Ford, GM and Chrysler wining and dining Politicians.. we have nothing to show for 16 years. So every one drive your gas guzzling SUV (at 75pmh) to your local dealership and trade it in for a Hybrid or Mini or Yaris or any car that gets 35mpg and higher then drive away at a nice 55 MPH to get the most of that wonderful view in your rear view mirror of your dealership lots loaded up with all those used SUVS rusting away . Stick it to the dealers with the junk they sold us in the first place.

  • JH

    the lovefest kills me!!

    KITT ROCKED – have not seen the new one

    this is all a scam to get the auto industry some more positive spin…. “HEY – looks what we are doing… we aren’t the only ones at fault here….”

    I get my best mpg at around 17 miles an hour – that is my average speed on my road bike when I ride it to work :)

  • Elliot

    My wife and I had our second child in December and we have started looking around at new cars. Ideally, I would like to find a nice wagon or small mini-van that was a hybrid (or got equivalent gas mileage). Unfortunately there really isn’t much out there for us to buy. It seems that ALL vehicles that fit a family get 17-20 in the city and 24-27 on the highway. Sorry, but that is flat out pathetic. Minivans, mid-size suv’s, wagons, etc are all in this range. Sure, 18 is better than 17, 19 is better than 18, etc. But none of this is anywhere close to what should be available.

    Sure, I want a free car that gets a million miles per gallon. That isn’t happening. Realistically, I think somebody should have a small-ish minivan or wagon (Outback sized….Mazda5 sized….) that costs under or about $30k and gets over 30mpg in the city.

  • Shines

    Elliot,
    Isn’t the Ford Escape Hybrid close to what you are looking for?

  • pete

    I would think anyone in their right mind would want to practice better driving habits regardless of the vehicle they drive. Why wouldn’t you want to save money, increase safety and help the environment at the same time? Plus it’s something you’re in control of and can do immediately.

    I drive a ’93 Lumina and simply driving the speed limit and putting the car in neutral when stopped cut my gas bill drastically. It’s not like I did anything that inconvenienced me – I still got to where I was going, it just took a little longer.

  • Bryce

    Yea Elliot, you basically described a Ford Escape hybrid

    -under 30k
    -seats pleenty
    -has plenty of room
    -gets over 30 mpg in the city (and highway for that matter)

  • Boom Boom

    Elliot,
    My aunt drives an Escape hybrid and she loves it. Shes getting over 30 mpg in the city. My understanding is that there is some limited availability on them, but they’re not that hard to get. The interior seating isn’t much more than a Prius, but the rear space is much more and the hauling ability is far superior.

  • GregT

    Personal responsibility programs usually have mixed results. We all know this bet you can think lots of failed programs yourself. People are not dumb its just people have different personal preferences. Changing how all people drive would be great but I try not live in fantasy land.

  • Bryce

    Can Priuses haul………anything. 10 lbs. of hauling capacity is more than zero…..lol. But really though, I think the escape hybrid is rated for several thousand lbs. if that is something that you find attractive at all.

  • JH

    Boom boom- On your saving lives comment: MADD said there would be an increase in vehicular deaths if the speed limit was raised from 55 to 60/65. After it was raised, there were actually less deaths. Don’t peddle the politician’s “if it saves one life” line here. Tons of lives would be saved if we had no highways at all and invested heavily in mass transit to get drivers off the road. But people aren’t really interested in saving lives, they are interested in convenience, money and reelection. Check your facts.

  • steved28

    This entire issue is a moot point. Don’t you people realize that economics is the only thing driving anything these days? Gas hits $4 a gallon, suddenly people feel it in their pocketbook, they drove less, and yes, they slowed down. It’s very evident on the highways and to some extent around town.

    Cars outsold trucks and SUVs for the first time in 10 years. 4 cyl engines outsold 6 and 8 cylinder engines. New technologies are speeding ahead that lied dormant for years. Gas and oil need to remain high and keep getting higher, the general populace is too stupid (at least here in the U.S.) to check the drain until the water hits their lower lip.

  • Shines

    I agree mostly with steved28. Most people are motivated by economics. Also pride. Let’s be honest with ourselves. (I have to agree with Noz on this thread) I try to drive “responsibly”. On my commute on the freeway I set my cruise at 60 (the legal limit on the stretch I drive). Yet most cars are passing me going 65 or more. It is human nature (pride?) to not want to be passed up by everybody. It is a tough temptation to resist speeding up. Sure there are times when I am in my self-righteous mode and I go 58 or less and to heck with everyone else. But you have to get into your self righteous mode to do that (I think Noz is the expert ;-D.
    It’s funny, on other threads people are saying everybody should slow down. Yet if the automotive industry asks everybody to slow down it is somehow a scam or auto industry conspiracy…
    I hate to say it, but it not such a stupid move by US automakers to save fuel now by asking us to improve our driving habits which will give them more time to retool and develop more fuel efficient vehicles.

  • Elliot

    We were underwhelmed with the Escape Hybrid. It is a fine vehicle, but we felt like it really didn’t gain us much interior space. So, the ONLY reason we would replace one of our two existing vehicles is mpg (well….and pollution). Now, that is a motivating factor, but 30k is a lot to drop to jump from 22mpg to 30mpg (or 18 to 30 if we replace our Outback).

    The Mazda5 or Taurus X would really be a great size for us, but once again….17-20/24-27.

    The Passat Wagon Diesel would be a good fit if it were a hybrid or if it met the latest requirements.

  • Bryce

    I see what you are saying……best of luck to you Mr. Elliot

    People trying to get ahead of others, compete if you will, is part of the evolutionary process. If it weren’t for that, than we would have died out a long time ago. Be thankful for that jerk speeding past you. His ancestors made your existance possible.

    Just thought I would give the argument another spin, from a Biology standpoint. : )

    Let the complaints roll in.

  • uktiger

    Bryce, are you EVER right about anything?

    It takes less energy to push your piece of crap car 70 miles per hour than it does to push it 50 miles an hour???? REally?

  • Samie

    Shine, you proved my point, It is a scam in that many consumers demand more fuel efficient cars now. But it works to for the auto industry b/c programs like this w/c may help reduce or delay future regulations like increasing CAFE. And as you say they can take their own time to adjust to future needs. Right now I’m not convinced that the industry wants to fully get rid of the big money large engine type vehicles. (Lets set aside current sales figures for now) More regulations could add to costs in reduction in power options to consumers and added tech. to boast fuel efficiency.

    On the surface programs like this looks good but really does little to change the mindsets of many Americans. The auto industry knows this and that’s not a wild conspiracy nor is it that they teamed up w/ California w/c has some of the toughest regulations on the auto industry. The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers gets paid for this type of work. As a consumer it is a scam becasue options sit on the self until they are forced to increase MPGs look at the historical track record of lobbying against regulations either on safety devices or fuel efficiency efforts. And no I don’t expect plugin-hybrids or EV’s on the streets tomorrow. We have fuel saving technology that can be used in ALL vehicles today but costs to consumers and profits get in the way. There will be improvements yes but if they continue to dodge the real need to take a more active role in providing fuel saving options in ALL of their products we will see more of the same for years to come.

  • Samie

    Shine, you proved my point, It is a scam in that many consumers demand more fuel efficient cars now. But it works to for the auto industry b/c programs like this w/c may help reduce or delay future regulations like increasing CAFE. And as you say they can take their own time to adjust to future needs. Right now I’m not convinced that the industry wants to fully get rid of the big money large engine type vehicles. (Lets set aside current sales figures for now) More regulations could add to costs in reduction in power options to consumers and added tech. to boast fuel efficiency.

    On the surface programs like this looks good but really does little to change the mindsets of many Americans. The auto industry knows this and that’s not a wild conspiracy nor is it that they teamed up w/ California w/c has some of the toughest regulations on the auto industry. The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers gets paid for this type of work. As a consumer it is a scam becasue options sit on the shelf until they are forced to increase MPGs look at the historical track record of lobbying against regulations either on safety devices or fuel efficiency efforts. And no I don’t expect plugin-hybrids or EV’s on the streets tomorrow. We have fuel saving technology that can be used in ALL vehicles today but costs to consumers and profits get in the way. There will be improvements yes but if they continue to dodge the real need to take a more active role in providing fuel saving options in ALL of their products we will see more of the same for years to come.

  • Samie

    Sorry to all for posting twice my cat decided to sit on the keyboard :(

  • Bryce

    cute cat. : )

  • Need2Change

    Boom Boom. Obviously, mileage goes down with speed.

    But I believe auto manufacturers could have already built cars with better gas mileage.

    And I have problems with the high mpg cars that are sold.

    I can’t find a Honda Fit, Toyota Matrix, Nissan Versa, or Yaris with large heated power seats, leather, navigation, leather armrest, XM/Sirius, moonroof, and upgraded stereo including HD radio. To get these, I must buy a larger car. Why?

    I make over $150K/year. I don’t want to drive around in seats that are too short, and so-so uphostery and stereo.

    Yes. I can get from point A to B with a Fit, but I want a better car than the current Fit. I considered a Prius, but it felt cheap to me.

    So, I keep driving my Maxima GLE and Chrysler 300 Special. My monthly gas bill is far less than car payments on a $30K Prius.

    And rather than build a more economical car, manufacturers are telling motorists, “if you learn to drive more economically, you can buy another gas guzzler.”

  • ex-EV1 driver

    There’s really a simple solution:
    Drive fast, get to work earlier, do more work, get more money, buy a Tesla, REALLY save energy and avoid gas.
    Its easy, fun and it doesn’t solve the problem by simply dumbing our lives down.
    Now, the next problem is how do I get all these gas guzzling, slow driving Priuses out of my way so I’ll be able to drive my Tesla faster?

  • Bryce

    roof mounted gatling gun???

  • Shines

    I really shouldn’t be defending US car companies, but for the sake of arguement…
    Samie, Last year you would have no problem buying a hybrid Escape, Camry, Prius or Civic. This year with $4 gas everybody suddenly wants one.
    How does promoting fuel saving driving habits help sales of herkin suvs like Suburbans and Hummers? It doesn’t.
    You say: they can take their own time to adjust to future needs.
    Geeze GM is betting the house on the Volt, they are scratching and begging for time asking consumers to hang on till the Volt is ready. They are out of their own time…
    A major reason smoking has been reduced in the US is because of heavy advertising and education pointing out all its dangers and faults. It won’t hurt the US 1 bit to keep teaching fuel economy to the masses. The more people think along the lines of – how can I transport myself more efficiently the fewer will be buying the herkin F350s, Superduties and other absurd gass guzzling vehicles.

  • Shines

    Bryce,
    People trying to get ahead of others, compete if you will, is part of the evolutionary process. If it weren’t for that, than we would have died out a long time ago. Be thankful for that jerk speeding past you. His ancestors made your existance possible.

    Good point – but is the guy speeding past me gong to end up falling into the biological category of dinosaur?
    Maybe his herkin SUV will…

  • Bryce

    Giant scary reptiles???

    Did you get a good look at him? lol

    If he gets himself killed, we can give him a Darwin award.

  • Shines

    Ha Ha Bryce… funny lol

    Actually the empty herkin suv driver looked more lke a
    Dodo bird ;-)

  • Bryce

    o, so then he was hunted into extinction then……..

    perhaps by angry Prius drivers!!!

  • Samie

    Shine I may see things differently then you in that many social responsibility programs don’t always pan out. (eg. DARE) You are right in that long-term programs may teach some to slow down or check tire presure ect… (Side note lov how my Cobalt shows the tire pressure on the dashboard :))
    As I said long ago that these things should be taught in Drivers ED (ALL states). But there will always be whose who choice for whatever reasons to ignore this. Lets say I don’t set my thermostat to 72 in the winter and I like it at 79 its a question of human behavior and comfort levels over any practicle reasoning w/c again can’t be adressed by an awareness program. And how many times do see those stupid local newscasters having reports on fuel saving techniques in ones life? Sorry to be boring but look at the amount at which the industry will set aside for awarness programs, and then look at how much new CAFE or CO2 regulations would cost them each year. Thats my point! In a fantasy world all vehicle models would have Diesel instead of V8 engines, smarter V6 and 4cylender engines that get more power & offer fuel savings, and an array of other devices that can be used for saving fuel. Bryce would know more about this but some of these techs have been around since the 70′s but have been ignored or RD on improvements have been slow. So my question is why wait or fight gov in providing these things to consumers in all vehicles? And as for people in Hummers I’m not sure they would care about fuel saving tips b/c thats not an insentive to them if so they would elect to purchase a more fuel efficient vehicle.

    As for slowing down I commend you on your efforts and its true about some of the SUV/Truck drivers :) Unfortunately I will have to say every time I have to drive on I-85 thru Atlanta I go with the flow and don’t follow the speed limit, you are a lot braver then I am b/c I feel like I’m going to get run over out there in ATL :(

  • SoloSoldier

    steved…

    If you make so much money, why are you even here??? I mean, most of us are price conscious consumers who not only want good mpg/gpm, we also want to help the environment. Try the $100,000 or in your case, purchase a tractor trailer… it seems you could care less anyway!

  • SoloSoldier

    Sorry, that was meant for Need2Change, not steved28

  • NumbersBynd

    You are my aspiration, I possess few web logs and infrequently run out from brand :). Check This Out Only wanna remark on few general things, The website style is perfect, the written content is rattling great :D.