Despite strong opposition from the industry, Americans weary of watching gas prices soar now want a near doubling of automotive fuel economy standards.
Nearly two-thirds of those polled by Opinion Research Group favored raising the Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE, standard to 60 mpg by 2025. The White House has been considering a bump to 62 mpg, though anticipated changes in fuel economy rules have been delayed since Republicans took control of the House last November.
Even with surveys revealing consistent consumer support for raising fuel economy standards, such measures have long lagged. After an extensive delay, the Obama Administration finally won enough industry backing to push the long-frozen 27.5 mpg mandate to 35 mpg by 2016. But despite hailing the industry/government alliance, there has been little support for going further, at least within the industry, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers asking the EPA – which oversees fuel economy – to wait until new studies have been completed.