EPA & DOT Propose Clearer, More Colorful Fuel Economy Labels
Making Guzzlers Stand Out Even More
One way to nudge people into making better decisions is to make it easier to compare different products and services. There are still many people out there who have no idea if 16 MPG is a good or bad, but if they saw a big red "D" on a sticker, they might be tempted to find a vehicle with a better grade. That's the goal behind new fuel economy labels proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT). Read on for more details.
The first new label design uses letters from A+ to D to communicate the vehicle's fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions in comparison to all other vehicles (so that the "average car" at that time is the benchmark). To make the information concrete, the labels wouldn't just measure things in miles per gallon and grams of CO2 per mile, but also in dollars (how many dollars a year on average? how many more or less dollars in fuel costs than the average cost, etc).
The second label is for "advanced technology" vehicles contains extra information such as the electric range of the vehicle, what MPG-equivalent it is getting while in electric mode, what MPG it's getting when the gasoline engine is powering the vehicle (in the case of plug-in hybrids like the Chevy Volt), etc.
The labels would also refer consumers to websites for more information about the vehicles and what each score means.
Via EPA, Green Car Congress
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