Luxury Vehicles Face Uphill Battle with Fuel Efficiency Standards

Everyone dreams of having a luxury car. It is a symbol of success and wealth, but it comes at a price. While most people only look at the price tag of the car, there is a wall that several luxury car companies are facing. Given the stricter fuel efficiency laws, these cars are coming under close scrutiny and having to pay fines for not meeting the standards.

The Obama administration is striving to fine every car that does not meet these new standards. While most companies are not worried about the fines because they are so low, they quickly add up after you factor in every car that fails the testing. In 2010, Mercedes paid over $3 million dollars in fines alone, and the fines increase with each passing year.

Currently, the fines range from as little as $5 to a couple hundred dollars, but those fines are expected to rise up to almost $25,000 by the year 2016. There are also other factors, such as how many cars are manufactured and how well they sell. These fines are multiplied by how many cars were sold, which eventually becomes the fine that the company must pay.

Both sides of the issue have stated their thoughts on the issue, but neither of them seems to have changed their ways. Luxury brands argue that they are being forced to conform to the government’s desires while the government states it has placed the laws to promote efficiency and reduce pollution. It remains to be seen which side will give in first, since other manufacturers have started changing their models to meet these standards.

It is difficult to know how this will affect car sales and models in the future. The fines could be passed down to the consumer, or the brands will have to adjust their models to meet the new standards. Some argue that the fines are purposefully high and could run some companies out of business, while others see the benefit in the laws. If things go well, most vehicles will have 52mpg in the year 2025.

By fining luxury car makers, the American congress is sending out the message that they are serious about these standards. As energy sources begin to deplete, how that energy is used is just as critical as finding the next renewable energy source. Part of the reason why luxury brands are behind the times is because they have not researched into other methods of energy. Because of this, they are still using the same technology that they have for years, even though the industry is moving in a different direction.

We will not know how much these standards will affect the luxury vehicle industry until several years from now, but it does have the potential the change the landscape of what luxury vehicles are and how they perform. What the consumer drives and how efficient the vehicle will be will change, but how it changes depends on how the government stands by their standards and how luxury brands decide to embrace and adhere to them.

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