Truck mpg better
According to the EPA’s annual Fuel Economy Trends report, the average fuel efficiency of cars was also unchanged at 27.9 mpg. Truck fuel economy was 20.4 mpg, an increase of 0.6 mpg from 2013, the second-highest gain in 30 years, according to the EPA. Truck-based SUVs and pickups posted the largest mpg gains of any vehicle type, according to the EPA.
Based on preliminary data, the EPA projects fleet-wide fuel economy to average 24.7 mpg in the 2015 model year.
The average fuel economy of new cars has increased 5 mpg in the last 10 years, a 26 percent improvement, according to the EPA.
Just over 56 percent of U.S. vehicle sales so far this year -- 8.9 million vehicles -- have been of SUVs, crossovers, pickups and other larger vehicles, up from 53 percent during the same 11 months of last year.
Despite the market shift towards crossovers and SUVs, the fact that individual vehicles continue to get more efficient means the regulations still have an impact, says Dave Cooke, vehicles analyst in the Clean Vehicles Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists.
“Without regulations in place, fuel economy would be moving backwards, just like it did in the 1990s and early 2000s,” Cooke said in a blog post. “The regulations are actually preventing even more emissions than originally projected. Additionally, any slowdown in fleet fuel economy improvement related to a shift in the sales mix will be temporary, since all vehicles will continue to improve.”