Ford Authority

NHTSA Finalizes New Fuel Economy Standards For 2027-2031

Over the past few months, proposed fuel economy standards from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have drawn their fair share of scrutiny, with various lobby groups opposing those stricter rules, which were set to potentially cost automakers who didn’t adhere to them billions in fines. Now, a couple of months after the U.S. Energy Department (DOE) softened its final rules related to EV mileage ratings following similar criticism, the NHTSA has followed suit as well.

Previously, the NHTSA proposed increasing fuel efficiency by eight percent annually for vehicles built in the model years 2024-2025 and 10 percent annually for 2026 model year vehicles, but it has now dropped those numbers significantly. In fact, the final rule now calls for fuel economy to increase two percent each year for 2027-2031 model year passenger cars, as well as light trucks built in the 2029-2031 model years. As for heavy-duty pickup trucks and vans, fuel efficiency will increase by 10 percent per year for the 2030-2032 model years and eight percent annually for those produced in the 2033-2035 model years.

According to the NHTSA, these changes will result in an average light-duty vehicle fuel economy rating of 50.4 miles per gallon by the model year 2031, as well as 35 miles per gallon by model year 2035 for heavy-duty trucks and vans, resulting in savings of $600 and $700 over the lifespan of those models, respectively. Additionally, the standards are projected to save around 70 billion gallons of gasoline through 2050, preventing more than 710 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions by 2050.

It’s unclear how these changes will impact automakers that don’t meet the new targets, but the previously proposed fuel economy standards were expected to result in big fines for automakers that failed to reach them – fines of $2,151 per vehicle in non-compliance costs, or as much as $1 billion annually. This is precisely why the Alliance for Automotive Innovation (AAI) – a lobby group that represents Ford and other automakers – previously called those standards “unreasonable” and asked for major revisions.

We’ll have more on future fuel economy standards soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for ongoing Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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  1. Thurston Munn

    Simply un-realist expectations.

  2. EB1959

    50 MPG ? These numbers can NOT be obtained the the Biden government knows it. They want you to GIVE UP your picks, your heavy duty pickups, and any construction business you have that needs these trucks. EV’s are NOT going to fulfill the needs of truck owners, simply will not happen. You are MORE likely to blow up charging your EV the you will save any money.

  3. William Sanderson

    Wow…….workaround to force ev. Ignore lithium is strip mined. Even if ev’s are dominant, who pays fr the roads? Last I checked it was a gas tax. Surcharge the ev plates based on 20k average miles. Rediculous none physics based math and IGNORANCE. Unbelievable and set for destruction. No guide path, no plan on lost revenue for road infrastructure. Guess we’ll just raise taxes again so everyone “pays their fair share”. Pathetic excuse for leadership.

  4. Stalkbroker94

    You can always count on unelected bodies requiring things without having any knowledge on the matter.


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