Only a couple of those are stellar IMO. Honda Accord LX (21-31) and Mazda MX-5 (22-27) and they are in top ten. Others that can't break 40 mpg highway?
Of course, over half the dirvers here with no major mods...justs driving techniques and psi...could pull some impressive numbers I am sure.
2006 Jeep Liberty CRD...Founder of L.O.S.T.
OME 2.25" Lift w/ Toyo Open Country HTs 235/75/16s
ASFIR Alum Eng/Tranny/Transfercase/Fuel Skids
2002 Air Box Mod...Air Tabs (5) on Roof...(3)each behind rear windows
Partial Grill Block with Custom Air Scoop and 3" Open Catback Exhaust
Lambretta UNO150cc 4 Stroke Scooter
I say the reason is - car makers respond to the lowest common denominators in consumers, and that l.c.d. in vehicles includes a lack of interest in mpg.
What we should have done years ago:
We should have tasked NASA with the job of creating real, applied solutions to all our energy issues. If powers-that-be gripe that NASA is strictly about space, create a new agency, de-fund NASA severely, fund the new one, and let all the engineers go there. Put it about 30-45 minutes drive away from the Florida "space coast" area so that people could work there without reorganizing their lives seriously.
Currently getting +/- 50 mpg in fall weather. EPA is 31/39 so not too shabby. WAI, fuel cutoff switch, full belly pan, smooth wheel covers.
The technology is there right now, and they don't have to be sardine cans.
Give Gayle Banks a 2 liter diesel engine and he can get 250 HP out of it while passing emissions with ease. Plenty of power for a nice sized pickup truck.
Put a 1 liter 125HP version in a Prius body with a wide range CVT and you can easily get 50. Add a lauch assist hydraulic rear axle and it would get 65 around town, with acceleration that would scare most soccer moms to death.
So lets assume they did it tomorrow. Pick a manufacturer, say Ford (for no good reason) Your Ford dealer has a 2500 pound 5 passenger car that gets an honest to god 55 MPg average. people are waiting in line with their checkbooks, while the rest of the over 100 million cars in the US just became worthless rolling scrap yards.
The other manufacturers go bankrupt and their inventory on new vehicles is sold for scrap while people wait for Ford to build 130 million cars. Ford has to sublet manufacturing to the other bankrupt manufacturers after buying their manufacturing facilities at yard sale prices.
The governments scared to death they will have to double the gas taxes to maintain revenue for road repairs.
Oil company stocks are falling like meterorites.
At 57 MPG average for the last 3 k miles I'm ready.
I averaged about 45 on the highway over the life of the car. On some trips I actually broke the 50 mpg barrier, including a drive from Forks, WA to Sacramento, CA where I averaged 52 mpg all the way through to Ashland, OR. My speed was a steady 60. At 160,000 miles the compression was still within specs and the mileage was still good.
I think gas prices would have to reach astronomical levels for any of that to take place. Because no matter how much people may gripe about it, there are still tons of people out there that are just willing to bite the bullet and pay whatever it costs to fill up their large SUV's and whatnot. It would have to get high enough to hurt these people's pockets, and that would probably be $10+ a gallon, IMO. It sucks, but it's just reality. Some people just have that kind of money to blow. I will stick to my Civic.