• fb_1510606196 avatar Carl Posted: 4/25/2011 10:42am PDT

    Back in the 1970-80 era I remember hearing that pushing small, light fuel sipper cars would doom us. Then the NHTSA decision to exempt work-related MPV vehicles brought on the flood of SUVs. Engineers saw that we had to equalize the effect of crashes. Today a subcompact has a huge collection of active and passive safety equipment that nearly does even out the crash hazard. The big problem today? Big SUVs will overturn so we all get to have side curtain airbags.

  • John Posted: 4/24/2011 6:54pm PDT

    The notion that heavier vehicles will make the roads safer is not true. If everyone drove a 6000# car, it would be no safer than if everyone drove a 2000# car. A heavy car only has a safety advantage if it crashes into a comparatively light car. The weight difference is the problem. A decrease in this disparity would increase safety of the overall fleet.
    John

  • martinex Posted: 4/23/2011 10:21pm PDT

    The answer to the fuel crunch is simple. Give up horsepower. The Honda CRX HF achieved 57 mpg with an normally aspirated 80 horsepower engine. If Americans are so infatuated with speed might I suggest getting off of your larded arses and going for a run. The resulting weight loss will aid manufacturers in reducing overall vehicle weight.

  • fb_755813016 avatar John Posted: 4/23/2011 3:04pm PDT

    If only the government had raised gas taxes in 1974 to European levels instead of using CAFE limits, we would be so much better off now.

  • WFL Posted: 4/23/2011 11:58am PDT

    Don't blame the car manufacturers, blame the extremely low fuel prices in the US compared to the rest of the world. Economy wasn't even on the radar screen of consumers.

  • WFL Posted: 4/23/2011 11:57am PDT

    Don't blame the car manufacturers, blame the extremely low fuel prices in the US compared to the rest of the world. Economy wasn't even on the radar screen of consumers.

  • DRUFFO4291 avatar DRUFFO4291 Posted: 4/23/2011 11:30am PDT

    I don't buy this at all. For years automakers told us it was literally impossible for them to manufacture a vehicle that gets good mpg and the public would buy.
    Today 40mpg is the new 30mpg, fantastic safety features available plus many of the newer vehicles are beautiful.
    I've owned Mercedes,Range Rover, Volvo's, Ford's etc.
    Today I want a nice looking vehicle that offers safety and VG to EXC. mpg no excuses.
    I read where the govt. is considering changing thh tax credit on some hybrid & electric vehicles to a tax refund !! I say great, if a person is willing to step ahead they should receive the benefits.

  • Bill Burke Posted: 4/23/2011 7:51am PDT

    The fuel economy argument is false on logic and high on political correctness and thus doomed to failure. The car industry is baring the brunt of this damaging efffort that could be likened to a dog chasing its tail. Led by a narrow minded, self proclaimed academic elite, this politically motivated agenda will harm the American industral core, workers and the buying public by continuing the chase in a "fools circle" of faulty claims in obedience to a questionable premise. This is a crime and the public is victim.
    To free ourselves the public must act at the ballot box, stand up in the classrooms and remain free in their buying choices. I'll buy that heavy, comfortable, capable,safe Jeep that is the market contradiction to a false premise.

  • Greg Rohloff Posted: 4/22/2011 2:12pm PDT

    The assumption that a vehicle that makes greater use of carbon fiber in its body-frame will always be more expensive is mistaken in that the advanced-materials industry is constantly changing and is as sensitive to cost as any other materials industry. Just because it is more expensive today does not mean it will be more expensive in the future. The cost of materials is just one part of the affordability equation. As fuel costs rise, the means of limiting the impact of those costs inherently becomes more affordable.