Mazda beats Honda to take EPA fuel efficiency crown in new study
Mazda is the major automaker that has the best fleet-wide fuel efficiency and the best CO2 emissions scores according to the EPA. US automakers improved fuel efficiency in model year 2013 according to a recently released study by the EPA. The study ranks eleven automakers in the US according to adjusted MPG and CO2 emissions. Mazda has the highest MPG average at 28.1 and the lowest output average of CO2 at 316 g/m. This is a gain of a full MPG over 2012 for Mazda and a drop of 12 g/m of CO2.
Mazda Tops, Nissan and Subaru Make Gains
Mazda led the leaders overall and also had good gains from 2012 to 2013. Nissan, number four on the list, had the most improvement adding 2.1 MPG on average. Subaru, third on the list, also had strong gains. The top eight of the 11 automakers ranked were all companies that began as either Asian or German brands. Ford, GM, and Chrysler had the worst EPA averages.
Hyundai-Kia Booted Off the List
Auto enthusiasts may remember that Hyundai and Kia had a scandal involving EPA estimated fuel economy. The EPA has not even included those automakers in the rankings. A footnote about those two automakers says “Hyundai and Kia are not included in this table due to a continuing investigation. In November 2012, Hyundai and Kia corrected fuel economy labels for many vehicle models.” The footnote goes on to say that had these automakers not been “under investigation” they may have topped the listings. Draw your own conclusions, I prefer not to be sued.
What Happened to Toyota?
Toyota has an excellent reputation as the maker of the Prius, the most popular green vehicle ever produced, and for making many other hybrid and full electric vehicles. The Toyota Corolla LE Eco is also an amazing vehicle. However, Toyota also sells a lot of trucks. Perhaps not by comparison to Ford, Fiat-Chrysler, and GM, but a lot nonetheless. Toyota also makes a lot of sport ‘utes and maxi-vans. This hurts Toyota. Toyota’s wide availability of all-wheel-drive vehicles also drags its average down.
Tesla Not A Major Automaker
Those hoping to find Tesla at the top of this list will be disappointed. The EPA does not make mention of the automaker directly in this report, but does say good things about alternative energy vehicles. Tesla is presently ranked forth or fifth among US brands offering plug-in cars for sale in the US and in 2013 sold approximately 17,650 Model S luxury sedans in the US market. It would seem Tesla might be one of the highest MPG brands and lowest CO2 brands were it included. Perhaps if its US sales grow to more than about 1,500 units per month it will be included at some point.
For more information on the report, you can see the executive summary at this link, which will also take you to the full report.