|Quoting Superfly (Reply 32):|
Republicans are expected to win the Senate and keep the House. If Obama is defeated, we can possibly see a repeal of CAFE.
IMHO, that's the best possible outcome on this issue.
|Quoting Superfly (Reply 32):|
Even if Gingrich can't entirely repeal CAFE, at least he can modify and make changes in the favor of consumers and manufactures.
IMHO, that would be a 2nd best possible outcome.
|Quoting TSS (Reply 29):|
With that in mind, coupled with the fact that repealing the CAFE regulations would be political suicide for all responsible parties the instant gas prices go up again, I think a reasonable compromise would be to close the SUV loophole and to adopt a CAFE standard that is realistic and achievable with current technology.
Actually, abolishing CAFE would translate into manufacturers being allowed to once again make larger CARS (including the full-size station wagon) without government fines, penalties and/or reprisals. A 5.4L engine in a Crown Vic would very likely post better overall fuel economy than the same engine does in an Expedition or E-series van because it isn't as tall as a van or SUV
. But since a 5.4L engine in a car would trigger a gas guzzler tax (like it does with the Mustang Shelby Cobras); Ford did not offer the 5.4L on ANY of its Panther-based full-sizes despite pleas from state police agencies, performance enthusiasts and limo coach-builders.
boom was due, in part, to the unintended consequence
of the CAFE laws. Many went to SUVs and now CUVs because they wanted a vehicle with more room than most cars on the market then and now could offer or needed a vehicle that could do heavy-duty towing.
Prior to CAFE, it was possible to purchase a mid-size CAR w/an optional tow package featuring a 6000 lb. towing capacity. After the first wave of downsizing took place in the late 70s; the mid-sizes were knocked out of contention and the best a FULL-SIZE car could offer was a 5000 lb. tow package after 1980. I still remember a 1978 pic. in Popular Science
issue showing a '78 Country Squire pulling a 7000 lb. trailer with the caption that read, "After this year, only trucks and vans will be able to tow this trailer
" Granted, Cadillac would later make a comeback on the 7000 lb. optional tow package for its '93-'96 Fleetwood; but by then it was too little/too late. Many buyers (mostly younger ones or ones not in the luxury car purchase bracket) had already since become accustomed to equating heavy duty towing w/only trucks and vans as opposed to cars.
As far as gas prices are concerned, much of these increases (both past & present) could have been avoided (or at least blunted) had both the President and congress allowed for more domestic energy production to take place years ago.
Politics aside, many vehicle manufacturers do bear some of the blame in placing all their product development eggs in one basket w/SUVs and neglecting most of its car lines (except for maybe the mid-size car models). One small car solution to address short-term (hopefully) rising gas prices some manufacturers proposed and done in the past was simply import a few of its overseas models. Without CAFE standards, with its stupid separate domestic & import (in terms of content) categories; this would've been essentially a no-brainer to the industry because it would not have involved costly re-tooling of existing plants nor a long waiting period to get more small cars available to the small window of opportunity.
Too often, we've seen the case that by the time newer small cars become available on the market the demand, as a whole, for them dries up usually due to stabilizing (or even dropping) gas prices accompanied with a stabilizing economy. In the U.S., at least, small car sales tend to thrive best during a recession. In more economically prosperous times, larger vehicles typically sell better; that's just a fact. As an example of such, after spiking in sales when gas prices last skyrocketed in 2007-2008, Prius sales dropped like a stone once gas prices fell from a nationwide average $4/gallon in the summer of 2008 to an average of $1.70/gallon by year's end. I'm sure their sales have upticked again with the more recent gas price spikes.
Anyway, back on topic.
The E-series will be missed. My father had a couple of Econoline vans durng the 80s. A black '79 cargo van, that ulimately wound up getting stolen in a shopping mall parking lot (it was never recovered) and a biege '77 after-market conversion van that still ran on LEADED gas. I drove both of them from time-to-time.
"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981