Event News

Process for Assessing the Fuel Economy of Light-Duty Vehicles

Reducing fuel consumption is one of the key drivers for product development in the automotive industry. With the 2025 Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) mandate of 54.5 mpg on the not-too-distant horizon, the industry is turning attention to the midterm review set for 2017. This review will be the way for industry to provide an update on fuel economy technology development to the federal government, and serve to set guideposts for future fuel efficiency regulation.

CAR’s next breakfast briefing on December 5 will offer a look at one key input into the review process at the Fairlane Center in Dearborn, Michigan.

The National Research Council (NRC) for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), has tasked a committee with assessing technologies and costs for improving fuel economy of light-duty vehicles. The committee has been charged with assessing costs, efficiency improvements and barriers to commercial deployment of technologies, and with making recommendations for improvements to CAFE. The project, launched in March 2012, is expected to take up to three years to complete.

“Predicting the production readiness and cost of a plethora of fuel-saving technologies out to 2025 is a formidable task with inherent uncertainty. The mid-term review provides a critical safety net for the industry to gauge progress and evaluate the need for adjustments to the CAFE ruling” said Jay Baron, CAR’s president and CEO. “To ensure that the government is well-informed on numerous technological options at the mid-term review and even beyond 2025, the knowledge-gathering process is rigorous and relies on the expertise of numerous stakeholders.”

A few members of the NRC team will participate in the CAR breakfast briefing which has been assembled to provide a snapshot into the process the NRC uses to meet this critical task; to provide the broader perspective on CAFE; and to look at how the auto industry will position itself to meet stringent fuel economy mandates. Since the assessment process is just underway, no comments made by participants represent the official findings of the committee.

Speakers Include:

  • Dr. K. John Holmes, Associate Director, Board on Energy and Environmental Systems, The National Academies
  • Dr. David L. Greene, Corporate Fellow, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Research Professor of Economics at the University of Tennessee
  • John Viera, Director, Sustainability & Vehicle Environmental Matters, Ford Motor Company
  • Julie Becker, Vice President, Environmental Affairs, Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers

Engineers, business development directors, environmental and sustainability directors, and technology planners will find the briefing of particular interest. Those working in related areas such as technology development, government affairs, strategy and business planning will also find value in attending.

The briefing is one of a series CAR offers on relevant topics of interest to industry stakeholders, and begins at 8 a.m. Space is limited. To register, visit the CAR website.


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