Auto Dealers Association Wants to Sell You a Lemon – Not a Clean Car

, Former Washington representative, Clean Vehicles | October 20, 2011, 2:19 pm EDT
Bookmark and Share

Making our cars and trucks cleaner and more fuel efficient is one of the most effective steps we can take to save money at the gas pump, clean up our air, and cut America’s oil dependence.  Automakers have the technology to make any new vehicle – from sedans to crossovers to pickup trucks – go farther on a gallon of gas and emit less pollution. It’s not rocket science.  It’s just basic auto mechanics – more efficient engines, smarter transmissions, and better materials.

That’s why UCS applauded the agreement announced this summer between the Obama administration, California, and major automakers to strengthen fuel efficiency and auto pollution standards for the second time in nearly four years. These standards still need to be finalized through an ongoing technical review process, but it lays the foundation for nearly doubling the fuel efficiency of new cars and trucks by 2025 compared to today’s levels.

Broad support for new clean vehicle standards – except for NADA

This agreement enjoys nearly universal support. Everyone from major automakers like General Motors and Ford, to the United Auto Workers, to consumer advocates, to small businesses, to veterans and national security groups, and environmental and science organizations are supporting the new standards.

But there is one organization who dared to say no to a good thing – the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA). Sadly, NADA has chosen to lobby Congress to try and overturn these important standards.

What happened to “the customer is always right”?

Call me old-fashioned, but why oppose standards that are going to save American drivers – the dealer’s customers – hundreds of  billions of dollars at the gas pump? Not to mention cleaner air to breathe and greater energy security thanks to being less reliant on oil.

Even under the strongest standard under consideration, the average consumer saves money from the moment they drive off the lot! That means that every month, these standards will lower the cost of driving a vehicle – even after accounting for the additional cost of technology.

Consumers want clean, fuel-efficient cars, trucks & SUVs

Automakers are already offering more clean, fuel efficient technology options in anticipation of new fuel efficiency and auto pollution standards starting with model year 2012. Consumers are shifting towards this technology across a wide range of segments – everything from compact cars to pickup trucks.

The shift in the marketplace shows that consumers want clean, fuel efficient options in every category of vehicles. No matter what a consumer needs, they should be able to get the best technology possible in their vehicle.

Tell your local auto dealer you want clean, fuel-efficient cars and trucks 

While the National Automobile Dealers Association is fighting to block these standards in Washington, there are many dealers around the country who don’t support the association. They know that clean, fuel-efficient vehicles are good for their customers, the country, and their business. Adam Lee, the owner of Lee Auto Malls, makes it clear that, “people want the best gas mileage they can get because it saves money – stronger fuel economy requirements will help me give them that mileage and they’ll in turn give me more business.”

Let the NADA representative in your State know that you support the new clean vehicle standards. Take action and tell them you want clean, fuel-efficient choices in the showroom – not a bunch of lemons.

Posted in: Energy, Vehicles

Support from UCS members make work like this possible. Will you join us? Help UCS advance independent science for a healthy environment and a safer world.

Show Comments


Comment Policy

UCS welcomes comments that foster civil conversation and debate. To help maintain a healthy, respectful discussion, please focus comments on the issues, topics, and facts at hand, and refrain from personal attacks. Posts that are commercial, self-promotional, obscene, rude, or disruptive will be removed.

Please note that comments are open for two weeks following each blog post. UCS respects your privacy and will not display, lend, or sell your email address for any reason.