Wisconsin auto dealers are not surprised by a decision to speed up new fuel efficiency standards for vehicles, but their impact on car prices could be hard to predict.
New federal guidelines rolled out Thursday will require all vehicles sold in the US to average 35 miles per gallon by the year 2016, advancing the timetable for making trucks more fuel efficient. Chris Snyder with the Wisconsin Auto and Truck Dealers Association says including trucks and SUVs in the goal will require some scrambling for auto makers to reach that benchmark. However, he believes it will happen.
The standards will require passenger cars to get 39 miles to the gallon and trucks to get 29. Federal officials estimate that will add about $950 to the price of a new car, which Snyder says is hard to believe. He says inflation alone should add at least that to car prices by 2016.
Snyder says what you’ll pay for a new car by then will largely depend on which fuel-efficiency technologies auto makers use. Some of those could be more expensive initially, but he says costs will likely come down as those technologies go into wider production.
AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:11)