Stop settling for mileage mediocrity

There are 2 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from Jul 15, 2009, titled Stop settling for mileage mediocrity. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

If the car I bought in 1979 got 30 miles to the gallon, if the fuel-efficiency was that good back then, didn't it follow that, with technological advances, a similar car purchased by 1999 would be getting 50 - and by 2009, maybe 60 - miles per gallon? Wouldn't there have been a steady progression in fuel efficiency for all makes and models, ...

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Greg

Glasgow, MT

#1 Aug 4, 2009
Federal safety regulations like crash protection also happened in the last 3 decades. This made cars heavier which lowers mpg.
liner

Hicksville, NY

#2 Aug 13, 2009
Not a very well-researched article. As Greg says, cars have gotten much bigger and heavier due to both gov regs and consumer expectations. Anybody want a car with roll-up windows, no AC? Didn't think so. The EPA also changed the method used to compute mileage to more accurately mirror real-world results. On average, cars today are light-years ahead of what was available 10, 15, 20 years ago.

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