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The EPA and Department of Transportation are thinking of making changes to the fuel economy labels that denote miles per gallon on new cars. The federal agencies on Monday, Aug. 30, 2010, jointly proposed changing the fuel economy labels consumers see on the window in new vehicles. The public will get to choose between two options: a letter grade for overall greenness of the vehicle, or an update of the current design. Either would include estimated cost-savings for its type of engine.
The goal of the new labels, according to agency press releases, is to provide consumers with straightforward energy and environmental comparisons across different types of vehicles, including electric vehicles (EV), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV), and conventional gasoline-powered vehicles.
The agencies would like to to provide enhanced information on efficiency and environmental performance – including information about air pollutants, such as smog – to consumers.
"New technologies such as battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids are entering the American market in greater numbers," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "We need to provide consumers with labels that include fuel economy and environmental information so that buyers can make better informed decisions when purchasing new vehicles."
The proposed rule can be viewed at www.nhtsa.gov/fuel-economy..