AD #2063 – Cadillac Makes V2V Standard On CTS, South America Shows Signs of Hope, Should CAFE Be Killed Off?

March 10th, 2017 at 11:48am

Runtime: 7:23

To watch this episode on YouTube click here.

- South America Shows Signs of Hope
- Cadillac Makes V2V Standard On CTS
- The Backhoe of the Future
- Ford Mustang Learns Chinese
- Should CAFE Be Killed Off?

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27 Comments to “AD #2063 – Cadillac Makes V2V Standard On CTS, South America Shows Signs of Hope, Should CAFE Be Killed Off?”

  1. DK Says:

    Great review of the state of CAFE regulation and attainment! I wish our elected representatives possessed a fraction of the understanding you have of the situation.

  2. Lex Says:


    I nominate you to be an advisor to President Trump on all things automotive. I agree that based upon current economic climate and technological advances the regulations could be pushed back to 2030.

  3. BobD Says:

    RE the other 86% doing their part… That’s not going to happen either since the coal industry is the darling of the Trump/Pence administration and Pruitt is married to the oil industry. We are in for a huge step backwards for the next four years (but hopefully not longer).

  4. XA351GT Says:

    CAFE will be a tough number to meet in 2025 and beyond. The number that they want the entire car makers fleet to achieve are not obtainable by anything on the road currently that isn’t Electric only. Hybrids don’t even make the 2025 numbers if I remember correctly. So I wouldn’t say kill it off ,but make it more reasonable to somehow get better numbers. With the fact that it’s bigger vehicles that produce the most profit and that makes them heavier and less aerodynamic somehow they need to meet in the middle where the environment isn’t being killed and the companies can be profitable . Easier said than done , I’m sure.

  5. Michael from Michigan Says:

    John, How dare you approach the issue of fuel economy and pollution regulation from an objective basis using real facts! The next thing you know, people will be asking politicians to take politics out of business and focus on real results. Blasphemy!

  6. Eric Says:

    yes we need to get rid of CAFE and CARB and come up with something to incentivize consumers to buy more fuel efficient vehicle vs. trying to mandate sales so automakers don’t build a bunch of vehicles that one buys and lose money on them.

  7. Joe Pastor Says:

    Re: V2V, I seem to recall the biggest stumbling block was the auto industry fighting w/the FCC over a set frequency standard. Great news for safety advocates if this issue has been resolved.
    And here’s my memo to the Trump administration: PLZ immediately mandate V2V as the pre-eminent safety standard for all future vehicles. Mr President, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see the life-saving and cost-saving benefits of cars and trucks not ramming or side-swiping each other!

  8. Dave Says:

    Why not dump the CAFE altogether and bring in a gas guzzler tax the worse the mpg the higher the tax maybe we can have better roads. Again excellent review of CAFE

  9. Roger Blose Says:

    John, you need to join the big three CEOs when they again go to the White House and see Mr. Trump. The CAFE regulations are why we have these crazy 2.0L turbo SUVs that people think will last beyond 50K. Yes these vehicles ace the EPA fuel economy tests but in real world driving, no so much as you put you foot to the floor. It is only going to get worse going forward as you said. I love how the Tesla owner rides for free on our roads paying no gas road tax and sucking up the Gov’t incentives to buy the car in the beginning. How about a Federal battery recycling tax for EVs?

  10. Jonathan Says:

    Make the 2018 standard and hold the regulations there for a few years…push back the 2019 cliff until 2025 and make the 2025 regulations 2035…

    Go after the other 86 percent of polluters and leave cars a lone for awhile,

    Keep the electric car subsidies in place to help consumers adopt this amazing technology.

    I want one not to save gas or save money but rather for the sexy good looks of the tesla 3 and the performance…

    Make gross polluters fund the electric car subsidies…for the american people

  11. John McElroy Says:

    #6. Joe, the auto industry did get part of the 5.9ghz spectrum carved out for it to use. And NHTSA is currently collecting public input on setting a V2V standard. It wants to start mandating the technology in 2020, with all light vehicles getting it by 2022.

  12. phred Says:

    John, Thank you for this segment to speak “straight radio” to the regulators and politicians that seem to live in a bubble. Government required market quotas (a.k.a. % electric cars to be sold) have never worked and have damaged many an industry when implemented.

  13. Tuck&Roll Says:

    Why don’t we just do away with all cars and go to tele communiting? We could just dial up a coordinate as to where we want to go and wahla, you’re there. But, watch out for that fly.

  14. Kit Gerhart Says:

    #4 The 54.5 mpg CAFE number equates to about 39 on window stickers, so there are a few current hybrids that meet the 2025 standard.

    The thing I dislike about the CAFE proposals is that they encourage companies to build huge vehicles, with the mpg requirements based on “footprint.”

    We need to increase gas tax. It would generate needed money for infrastructure, and would encourage people to think more about their purchase, before buying a huge truck to do the work of a Civic hatchback.

    Some of what CARB does makes sense, but some does not. The biggest car-related thing that disproportunately affects CA is smog in some urban areas. Encouraging use of EV’s in those areas makes sense.

  15. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Energy could be saved, equal to all energy used by cars, by not over-air conditioning everywhere. Well, maybe close.

  16. Albemarle Says:

    Each province in Canada or state in the U. S. has a different mix of co2 causes. In Ontario, transportation is the largest slice of the pie, with manufacturing a close second. In the Maritimes (east coast), electricity generation is the largest co2 emitter. In Alberta, oil production. So solutions need to be based on regional needs.
    I have always felt that fuel economy standards are unnecessary regulations. If we just properly regulated co2 emissions, then maybe we could get oil companies to refine less carbon rich gasoline and diesel. Just another way to cut back on co2 emissions which is the ultimate world goal.

  17. Chuck Grenci Says:

    John, spot-on for all your comments, a big two thumbs up. As said in an earlier post, people who know the full faction of the auto-industry, you included and probably especially you, need to present the facts including the common sense approach. We have to remember that cars are already clean, clean, clean; yeah they can improve but move the burden to some of the other contributors. Since those ‘others’ are way behind of the curve, they could easily make a difference more so than an already tech’d out auto-industry.

  18. Drew Says:

    John, if your basis for saying “baloney” to the OEM claims of lost jobs is based on your assumption that they can achieve the 2025 standard with the same 3% electrification mix as today, then you need to check your assumption. The required mix of BEV/PHEV/HEV will need to be at least 30%. This poses two issues:

    1. Costs aren’t coming down fast enough, so cars will go far up in price (OEMs cannot stay in business with the present money-losing prices of BEV/PHEV/HEV vehicles). That price increase will reduce volume as customers won’t see value in them (certainly not at anything under $4/gallon), and that reduced volume will result in many assembly/component plant closures. Remember, for every one OEM job, there are 7-10 supplier, dealer, and other automotive jobs at risk.

    2. The electric infrastructure is not prepared for the increased electricity demand (not all of which will be done in the wee hours of the early morning), and too many condo/apartment complexes aren’t installing recharging stations at a fast enough rate. And large cities (Boston, NY, philly, Chicago, that have people fighting for street parking (many single family dwellings lack garages) woefully lack recharging facilities.

    I agree we need to reduce our reliance on oil-based energy, but our government needs to listen as much, if not more so, to the experts who are challenged to make the change as they listen to the dreamers of change. As such, I tend to agree with 9/Jonathan.

  19. Kit Gerhart Says:

    15 Unfortunately, the new U.S. administration wants to do nothing about any of the sources of greenhouse gases, except maybe to increase emissions of all of them.

    There are different ways to meet cafe numbers, among them, duh, have a fleet that looks more like what they have in most of the rest of the world. Yeah, the “footprint” thing undermines that to some extent, but it is still much easier to meet the standards, current or future, to build more cars, and fewer trucks.

    I agree with John on the jobs. It takes more, not fewer people to build efficient, high tech vehicles, than to build lower tech ones, even if they are big.

  20. Drew Says:

    Kit, the regulations require more than today’s technology. It assumes new technology. If you recall the last time regulations forced OEMs to push immature technology, the consumer became a guinnea pig. OEMs were forced to shift resources from other vehicle attributes. Performance and quality suffered, and the industry and country went into a major recession. But now, the government is pushing new technology on multiple fronts – fuel economy, emissions, safety, and autonomy. Costs and prices will rise. Volume will fall… and the payback for all that development will take longer (recall this week’s ALD that noted R&D not paying back as quick… it’ll get worse). This is why Wall Street is bearish on the auto industry.

  21. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Drew, I agree that it would take new technology to meet the propsed 2025 standards, with U.S. market vehicles staying as big as they are now. There are few current vehicles that meet those standards, and all are probably hybrids.

    CAFE never worked as intended, even from the start. It resulted in the near demise of car height wagons in the U.S., because tall wagons, aka SUV’s were under a different set of rules, and allowed to be gas hogs, relatively speaking.

  22. Drew Says:

    Kit, it’ll get worse because the new CAFE gives target breaks for AWD SUV/CUVs. So, we may see FWD versions go away as OEMs incentive customers to get AWD. As most people buy vehicles with more capability than they need, I don’t see those FWD SUV/CUV customers returning to passenger cars.

    I’d be happy with a hatchback (Focus, Cruze, Elantra, Forte, Mazda3.. but but a cheating VW), except I am growing tired of staring at the backend of underutilized tall vehicles.

  23. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I, too get tired of staring at the back end of underutilized tall vehicles, but I am unlikely to buy one. I’ll keep my rarely driven tall vehicle, a 28 year old minivan, but my most used vehicles are, and will continue to be a Prius, a Corvette, and a MINI. I am seriously thinking of replacing my 7 year old Prius with a new one, because the new one is quieter, and has additional gadgets, like adaptive cruise control. Also, it gets even better mpg than my 2010, not that it matters much, with today’s gas prices.

  24. Sawguy Says:

    CAFE has become a big joke. It’s intent is good but it is so filled with fudge factors that I am not sure how well it represents reality. I have two vehicles, a Fusion Hybrid and a Explorer. The Fusion gets 41-42 MPG summer and 35-36 MPG winter and this is average over months. The Explorer gets less then 20. They both have their purpose in my fleet. My Explorer is a flex fuel vehicle which gives it a higher CAFE rating but who sees it. The only thing that matters is what the real people who drive the vehicles get. I like the Fusion Hybrid because it does get good mileage and drives well. But a Hybrid Explorer better tow like my V6 Explorer or it’s worthless.

    Increase the gas tax and you will drive consumers to want more fuel efficient vehicles and manufacturers to provide them. Do it slow and over time so you don’t penalize current owners too hard but everyone will know where it’s headed.

    Side benefit is extra taxes will help rebuild roads and infrastructure that badly needs it. This will also offset the effect of falling road funding/gas tax revenue as vehicles become more fuel efficient.

    How about changing the way CAFE is measured. Use data from consumers vehicles driven in real world conditions. Then maybe we would not have 45 MPG targets on vehicles then get maybe 30.

  25. Drew Says:

    Kit and Sawguy, I highly recommend a Ford C-Max. We get 46-48 Mpg in moderate temperature conditions and 40-ish in extreme weather conditions. It has excellent rear seat room and the utility of a 2-row CUV… without looking goofy (Prius). CR and JDP don’t rate it very highly, but the is due to Ford’s 2nd generation SYNC. The 2016 and 2017 models have the much more satisfying SYNC3, plus very attractive rebates.

    Hyundai and Kia now have vehicles in this space, but their dealers are a turn-off.

  26. BobD Says:

    While it would be nice for CAFE to represent something that is “real world”, providing flexibility to the OEMs to offer different solutions while aggregately moving in a more fuel efficient direction is all that really matters. If the EPA/CARB over the past 40 years had not continued to move the target forward, the consumption of fossil fuels would like be straining supplies such that we would be paying significantly more than we are paying today (e.g., $5-10/gal). The US and the world have millions of more vehicles today, yet the fossil fuels consumed continues to decrease. Repealing or rolling back CAFE/CARB standards is very short sided. We can debate the rate of what is reasonable for the OEMS to meet, but increasing standards to drive innovation is beneficial to everyone who lives on this planet.

  27. Kit Gerhart Says:

    24 I drove a C-Max when it was new, in 2012? I liked the way it drove, but didn’t like the controls. Also, the load floor was shorter than that of a Prius. Now, with the better infotainment system, it would be a great vehicle if the load floor is long enough, especially if most of your driving is urban. The C-Max gets almost Prius-like city mpg, but a lot worse highway mpg than a Prius, according to CR and others.