WardsAuto has released the first annual WardsAuto Fuel Economy Index: State of the Industry report, showing that new technologies and consumer buying patterns lifted average fuel economy to a record high of 24 MPG in 2012.
The average represents a full mile-per-gallon improvement over light vehicles (LVs) sold in the previous 12 months.
The report features data from the WardsAuto Fuel Economy Index (FEI), which uses model-line LV sales, engine installation rates and EPA window-sticker fuel economy rankings to calculate relative average fuel economy of across brands, segments and power types.
The 2012 gain in fuel economy was the largest year-to-year improvement in the history of the FEI, which has risen every year since its inception in 2008. The 4.3 percent gain eclipsed the 3.2 percent jump in 2009 that accompanied that year’s government-sponsored “Cash-for-Clunkers” program, which incented consumers to trade in older LVs for more fuel-efficient models.
The 2012 results also represent a 14.3 percent improvement over the index rating established in Q4 2007, the index base period (IBP).
Gasoline engines win all top 10 spots for first time in seven years.
According to retail sales data compiled by WardsAuto Group, the company gained the largest market share of the year for heavy duty trucks