Toyota Best In Fleet MPG; Ford Claims Most Improved, Best In Class

November 17, 2010
2011 Ford Fiesta

2011 Ford Fiesta

While Toyota still ranks at the top in fuel economy across its passenger-car fleet for the 2010 model year—led by vehicles like the 2011 Prius—Ford Motor Co. [NYSE: F] is moving on up. Ford says that from 2004 to 2009, its fleet-average fuel economy improved more than any other automaker; it posted nearly double the improvement of top rivals.

A few weeks ago, the federal government released its periodic Summary of Fuel Economy Performance, indicating that Ford still officially has middle-of-the-road fuel economy figures according to the federal government's Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) calculations. But it's actually much better than that, now with four 40-mpg vehicles for the 2011 model year—more than any other full-line automaker, it says, with the likes of these segment leaders:

  • 2011 Ford Fiesta - 40-mpg highway with the dual-clutch automatic
  • 2011 Ford Mustang - 31-mpg highway with the 305-hp V-6
  • 2011 Ford Ranger - 22/27 mpg, the best of any pickup
  • 2011 Ford F-150 - best in class mpg for V-6 and V-8 engines
  • 2011 Ford Escape Hybrid - best mileage of any SUV

In addition, next year Ford plans to introduce more fuel-efficient EcoBoost engine options to both the F-150 and Edge. The 2012 Ford Focus is also expected to be rated up to 40 mpg.

Passenger cars for 2010 are expected to have a CAFE of 27.5 mpg—as has been required since 1990—while light trucks need to have a CAFE of 23.5 mpg.

Admittedly, CAFE isn't a straightforward measure of fuel economy either. There are a number of CAFE exceptions—including a 1.2 mpg credit for flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs).

That said, it's expected that the industry will average 29.2 mpg over model-year 2010, including 33.7 mpg for passenger cars and 25.1 mpg for light trucks; that's well ahead of the federal standard, but in anticipation of tighter standards being phased in, leading up to a 34.1-mpg average in 2016.

To help you take the pulse of where automakers are in their attempts to green their fleets, here are CAFE ranking lists for each category for 2010:

Import Cars (27.5-mpg requirement)
Toyota 44.4
Honda 40.9
Kia 36.6
Hyundai 36.0
Mazda 34.5
Suzuki 34.5
GM 34.0
Volkswagen 32.9
Nissan 32.5
Mitsubishi 31.7
Subaru 29.7
BMW 28.7
Ford 27.6
Daimler (Mercedes-Benz) 26.9
Porsche 25.7
Lotus 24.5
Jaguar 23.8
Spyker 19.5
Fiat (Ferrari and Maserati) 18.0

Domestic Cars (27.5-mpg requirement)
Tesla 346.8
Toyota 36.4
Nissan 34.8
Honda 34.7
Ford 32.3
Mazda 31.4
GM 30.6
Chrysler 28.0

Light Trucks (23.5-mpg requirement)
Hyundai 30.0
Subaru 29.9
Mitsubishi 28.3
Honda 26.9
Mazda 26.6
Suzuki 26.3
Toyota 26.0
Kia 25.7
GM 25.4
Volkswagen 25.2
Nissan 24.9
Chrysler 24.1
Ford 24.0
BMW 23.6
Daimler (Mercedes-Benz) 21.5
Porsche 20.5
Land Rover 18.7

[NHTSA; Ford]

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