30 Dec '11, 5pm

Fat people and fuel economy: A weighty connection

Fat people and fuel economy: A weighty connection

The auto industry’s focus on losing weight is a welcome change . According to Christopher Knittel of the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Davis, “From 1980 to 2004, the average fuel economy of the U.S. new passenger automobile increased by less than 6.5 percent. During this time, the average horsepower of new passenger cars increased by 80 percent, while the average curb weight increased by 12 percent.” That’s awful. And, he adds, “[I]f weight, horsepower and torque were held at their 1980 levels, fuel economy for both passenger cars and light trucks could have increased by nearly 50 percent from 1980 to 2006; this is in stark contrast to the 15 percent by which fuel economy actually increased.”

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/green-tech/transportation/blogs/fat-pe...

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