Automobile Fuel Economy: What Could We Achieve by 2015? Steve Plotkin Argonne National Laboratory National Energy, Environ...
Major points: <ul><li>U.S. fuel economy is unlikely to improve without a push, while Europe and Japan  are  pushing. </li>...
RECENT HISTORY:  New technology and redesign boosted U.S. auto fuel economy from 1975-1988.  During 1988-2000, technology ...
What negated the impact of the new technology? <ul><li>Trend of declining weight reversed : </li></ul><ul><li>1988 weight ...
Current official expectations for the U.S. fleet of new vehicles are modest: <ul><li>1995 LDVs: 24.7 mpg; </li></ul><ul><l...
In contrast, other industrialized nations are pushing fuel economy higher. <ul><li>Europe </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Voluntary ...
NAS, ANL have evaluated what  we can do here in the U.S. <ul><li>TO PROPERLY INTERPRET THEIR RESULTS, REALIZE: </li></ul><...
The ANL study developed technology packages (example: compact 4WD SUV): 1.   BASELINE  – steel body-on-frame   20.3 mpg  2...
And looking at “marginal costs”: 1.   BASELINE  – steel body-on-frame   20.3 mpg  2.  2015 BAU  – HSLA unibody, 4v engine ...
Both NAS and ANL constructed technology price curves to allow  evaluation of different mpg targets.
The National Academy study developed  “cost effective” levels of MPG increase: <ul><li>Cars: 12-27% depending on class (su...
The ANL study also developed  “cost-effective” mpg levels,  & examined the use of alternatives to the current system. <ul>...
Based on these results, we could: <ul><li>Set new standards at “cost-effective” levels (20-30% improvement)…..but remember...
Critics have raised a number of  concerns about new fuel economy standards: <ul><li>Safety concerns if fleet made much lig...
How concerned should  we be about safety? <ul><li>We could avoid weight reduction by using a weight-based standard. </li><...
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Automobile Fuel Economy: What Could We Achieve by 2015?

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Automobile Fuel Economy: What Could We Achieve by 2015?

  1. 1. Automobile Fuel Economy: What Could We Achieve by 2015? Steve Plotkin Argonne National Laboratory National Energy, Environment, and Transportation Summit NARUC May 15-17, 2002
  2. 2. Major points: <ul><li>U.S. fuel economy is unlikely to improve without a push, while Europe and Japan are pushing. </li></ul><ul><li>Both the National Academy and Department of Energy have examined new fuel economy standards – but results require careful interpretation. </li></ul><ul><li>Both agree that substantial increases in fuel economy – 20-30% -- can be achieved cost-effectively by 2012 or so if lifetime fuel savings are considered and if foregoing continued increases in power and other amenities are not considered a “cost.” </li></ul><ul><li>There have been severe criticisms of the current CAFÉ standards. Some could be resolved by changing the format of the standards….others need to be discussed. </li></ul>
  3. 3. RECENT HISTORY: New technology and redesign boosted U.S. auto fuel economy from 1975-1988. During 1988-2000, technology and redesign continued, MPG stagnated. 1975 1988 2000 FUEL ECONOMY, MPG 15.8 28.6 28.1 WEIGHT, LB. 4058 3047 3386 % FRONT WHEEL DRIVE 7 81 84 % AUTO LOCKUP TRANS 0 66 87 % FUEL INJECTED 5 84 100 % 4-VALVE/CYLINDER 0 10 61 And structural redesign, improved aerodynamics, lower rolling resistance tires, friction reduction and other efficiency technology continued to be added.
  4. 4. What negated the impact of the new technology? <ul><li>Trend of declining weight reversed : </li></ul><ul><li>1988 weight = 3047 lb, 2000 weight = 3386 lb </li></ul><ul><li>Power increased dramatically : </li></ul><ul><li>average 1988 HP = 116, 2000 HP = 168 </li></ul><ul><li>Vehicle amenities increased : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>0-60 mph time decreased from 12.8 to 10.3 seconds </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>structural stiffness increased </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>% air conditioned increased </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>safety, emission standards tightened </li></ul></ul><ul><li>MPG was traded for power, size, luxury. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Current official expectations for the U.S. fleet of new vehicles are modest: <ul><li>1995 LDVs: 24.7 mpg; </li></ul><ul><li>2000 LDVs: 24.0 mpg </li></ul><ul><li>2010 LDVs: 25.7 mpg (EIA projection) </li></ul><ul><li>(and 30.2 mpg for cars) </li></ul><ul><li>Source: EIA Annual Energy Outlook 2002 </li></ul>
  6. 6. In contrast, other industrialized nations are pushing fuel economy higher. <ul><li>Europe </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Voluntary agreement (33% gain 1995-2008) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Implies ~ 41 mpg in 2008 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Japan </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mandatory weight class stds (23% gain 1995-2010) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Implies ~ 35.5 mpg in 2010 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>U.S. (no agreement, no standard) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Projection of 25.7 mpg by 2010 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>4% gain from 1995! </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. NAS, ANL have evaluated what we can do here in the U.S. <ul><li>TO PROPERLY INTERPRET THEIR RESULTS, REALIZE: </li></ul><ul><li>The makeup of the LDV fleet is changing, but analysis can’t capture effects of these changes. </li></ul><ul><li>Analysis can only define what automakers COULD do, not what they WILL do. </li></ul><ul><li>Assumptions are CRITICAL – e.g., determining whether a technology is cost-effective requires assumptions -- future fuel prices, # years of fuel savings a consumer will take into account, consumer’s discount rate….all uncertain. </li></ul><ul><li>AND consumers might value acceleration, size more than fuel economy….so “cost-effective” still might not be what consumers actually desire. </li></ul>
  8. 8. The ANL study developed technology packages (example: compact 4WD SUV): 1. BASELINE – steel body-on-frame 20.3 mpg 2. 2015 BAU – HSLA unibody, 4v engine 24.5 mpg, $670 w/VVT, improved C D , C R , 5-spd auto 3. 2015 MAX – plus Al spaceframe, further 28.4 mpg, $2060 C D , C R improvements, VVLT 4. 2015 MHEV – MAX plus CVT, 42V, 34.0 mpg, $3595 EPS,Twin 10 kW motors 5. 2015 FHEV – MAX plus ECVT, 38.9 mpg, $5830 40 kW motor (300V) 1500 gallons saved 2500 gallons saved 3500 gallons saved 4200 gallons saved
  9. 9. And looking at “marginal costs”: 1. BASELINE – steel body-on-frame 20.3 mpg 2. 2015 BAU – HSLA unibody, 4v engine 24.5 mpg, $670 w/VVT, improved C D , C R , 5-spd auto 3. 2015 MAX – plus Al spaceframe, further 28.4 mpg, $2060 C D , C R improvements, VVLT 4. 2015 MHEV – MAX plus CVT, 42V, 34.0 mpg, $3595 EPS,Twin 10 kW motors 5. 2015 FHEV – MAX plus ECVT, 38.9 mpg, $5830 40 kW motor (300V) source: ANL/ORNL/EEA study on Voluntary Fuel Economy Standards 1 - 2 $0.45/gallon 2 – 3 $1.39/gallon 3 – 4 $1.54/gallon 4 – 5 $2.19/gallon
  10. 10. Both NAS and ANL constructed technology price curves to allow evaluation of different mpg targets.
  11. 11. The National Academy study developed “cost effective” levels of MPG increase: <ul><li>Cars: 12-27% depending on class (subcompact 12%, midsize 20%, large 27%) </li></ul><ul><li>Light trucks: 25-38% depending on class (small SUV 25%, minivans 29%, large pickups 38%) </li></ul><ul><li>BUT changing to 3-year payback yields NO cost-effective improvements for cars, 2-15% for light trucks </li></ul><ul><li>If automakers believe consumers are “myopic” about fuel economy, it’s obvious why they don’t improve it! </li></ul>
  12. 12. The ANL study also developed “cost-effective” mpg levels, & examined the use of alternatives to the current system. <ul><li>“ Cost-effective” mpg increases are about 23-24% for both cars and light trucks, assuming lifetime valuation of fuel savings. </li></ul><ul><li>However -- If only 3 years of fuel savings are valued, “cost-effective” levels drop drastically. </li></ul><ul><li>Changing the form of standards – e.g. using a “uniform percentage increase” approach, or a weight-based standard – will change how standards affect individual automakers more than industrywide cost/benefit….is worth examining. </li></ul><ul><li>Weight-based standards may add cost – since weight-reduction is lost as a compliance measure. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Based on these results, we could: <ul><li>Set new standards at “cost-effective” levels (20-30% improvement)…..but remember that this ignores tradeoffs with vehicle performance and size. </li></ul><ul><li>Do nothing, focusing on what consumers seem most likely to want to do. </li></ul><ul><li>Set even higher targets: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Higher mpg levels can be obtained with total fuel savings > technology price…but not at the margin. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Depend on potential for new technologies, cost reductions in key technologies (e.g., hybrids). </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Change the form of the standards….and answer several of the criticisms of the current system. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Critics have raised a number of concerns about new fuel economy standards: <ul><li>Safety concerns if fleet made much lighter, smaller. </li></ul><ul><li>Will consumers buy the redesigned vehicles? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we truly understand performance, costs of new technologies? </li></ul><ul><li>What about the “negative synergies” the U.S. auto companies criticized the NAS report on? </li></ul><ul><li>Aren’t standards an inefficient way to improve fuel economy? </li></ul>
  15. 15. How concerned should we be about safety? <ul><li>We could avoid weight reduction by using a weight-based standard. </li></ul><ul><li>In its safety conclusions, NAS panel used a NHTSA analysis that an earlier NAS panel on safety had concluded should NOT be used to measure the safety impact of CAFE. </li></ul><ul><li>New reanalysis sponsored by Honda using same NHTSA approach with more recent data shows moderate weight reduction (100 lb) would yield no significant change in safety . </li></ul>

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