Tag Archives: automobile industry

EPA’s gasoline efficiency tests are garbage

Our government in action: The tests the EPA uses to establish the fuel efficiency of cars are unreliable, and likely provide no valid information at all about the fuel efficiency of the cars tested.

The law requiring cars to meet these fuel efficiency tests was written in the 1970s, and specifically sets standards based on the technology then. Worse,

[T]he EPA doesn’t know exactly how its CAFE testing correlates with actual results, because it has never done a comprehensive study of real-world fuel economy. Nor does anyone else. The best available data comes from consumers who report it to the DOT—hardly a scientific sampling.

Other than that, everything is fine. Companies are forced to spend billions on this regulation, the costs of which they immediately pass on to consumers, all based on fantasy and a badly-written law. Gee, I’m sure glad we never tried this with healthcare!

After mandating the sale of 15% ethanol gasoline — that can damage engines and lower fuel efficiency — the EPA is now going to require that you buy at least 4 gallons in order to reduce the damage.

How nice of them: After mandating the sale of 15% ethanol gasoline — which can damage engines and lower fuel efficiency — the EPA is now going to require that you buy at least 4 gallons when you fill your tank in order to reduce the damage.

The entire auto industry has made it very clear its opposition to 15% ethanol because that mixture is harmful to vehicle engines. So, does the EPA back off? No, it instead doubles down, increasing its regulatory control in a manner that is complex, unenforceable, and impractical.

And when this new regulation doesn’t work and vehicles begin to fail, don’t expect the EPA to pay for the repair. Instead, I expect we will soon have EPA regulators standing at every gas station, checking to make sure we use the right gasoline in the right amounts, ready to fine or arrest us if we dare to do something different.