Perhaps no surprise to followers of alternative energy vehicles, the U.S. EPA recently rated Fiat-Chrysler last place among 11 automakers in its fleet fuel efficiency.
According to the federal agency’s Trends report, fuel efficiency for automakers has risen 0.5 mpg to a record 24.1 mpg. Fiat-Chrysler was at 20.9 mpg for 2013 among all its light trucks and cars, an increase of 0.8 mpg.
The automaker’s chief, Sergio Marchionne, has been quoted saying the cost of hybrids and electric cars just doesn’t pencil out for the company, and aside from the Fiat 500e compliance car, it has none now for sale.
This year it did however release a new pony car, the 707-horsepower Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat which is rated at up to 22 mpg highway, but if using all its power, it will use 1.5 gallons per minute of gasoline. As a follow-up, it released the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.
The company says it will however meet tightening fuel economy standards with hybridization of some of its vehicles along with pursuing several avenues that let it make the grade with its various models.
This will include smaller engines, smaller vehicles, reliance on eight and nine-speed transmissions, and optimization where possible, including lightening of vehicles and increasing efficiencies.
And meanwhile, the company is buying emission credits from other automakers, it says, as a stop-gap measure, while its efforts get it up to speed.