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Old 06-30-2011, 11:08 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Old Tele man View Post
...just goes to illustrate that the car manufacturers COULD have produced cars with much better MPG numbers years ago, if they'd just wanted to do so!
The big problem, as already mentioned is that it costs more to make more efficient vehicles that give the same performance as what the buyer is used to. Because buyers won't buy something that sacrifices.

I have a 1990's diesel truck that seats seven and can do 40 mpg in a pinch. But it takes nearly 30 seconds to hit 60 mph and emits enough smoke to kill a small dog every time you back out of the driveway. Nowadays, you can buy seven seater diesels that hit 40 mpg on the highway and 60 mph in seven or eight seconds, with emissions that meet even stringent EURO IV levels. But those things cost twice as much as my old smoker (even inflation adjusted) did.

Today's Tucson is a pretty sweet car... and if you want excellent fuel economy, you can have it in 2.0, a 2.0 Tucson with the 6-speed can match a 1.8-2.0 compact car in terms of economy. So why don't you get it in America? Because there's no market demand.

Manufacturers DO and HAVE made cars with excellent economy over the years. They needed to in order to make it in markets with high gasoline prices and tax restrictions on engine size. But in America, there was no market demand (too slow), so they didn't bother importing them... not in great numbers. Too bad you never got the 1.2 liter Honda Fit, which could, on the highway, even tweak 60-70 mpg...

Reminds me of the old "Who killed the electric car" brouhaha... GM-bashers only need to look at other ultra-high tech fuel saving cars of the time, like the late, lamented Audi A2... a fantastic car that used high technology, efficient engines and extensive use of aluminum to achieve nearly 100 mpg. Yet sales were relatively dismal. People weren't willing to pay a lot of money just for fuel economy.
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