Mandate would fuel small-car drive, but US auto cost high

Oct 31, 2007 | 03:11 PM | Michael Cowden

With gas prices spiraling and pollution control a hot topic on the street as well as in the halls of power, the car of the future might be small—very small.

Pending legislation in Congress could mandate fuel-efficiency standards of 35 miles per gallon or higher, according to Kim Hill, director of the automotive communities program at the Center for Automotive Research, an independent industry think tank in Ann Arbor, Mich. Those figures make even Toyota Motor Corp.—which has fostered a green image—cringe, Hill said.

"We don't have an energy policy. This will be our policy, unfortunately," he said at AMM's Auto Steel and Metals conference in Nashville. "This is a mandate to the automakers."....

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