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CA cuts a mileage improvement deal with 4 automakers, but locals wonder about the future price of cars

Posted at 10:49 PM, Jul 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-26 02:18:55-04

The state of California is working with four car brands to offer drivers more fuel-efficient cars, but some worry it’ll make them more expensive.

Drive, gas up, repeat. It’s an endless cycle that seems to add up at the pump for drivers like Kathleen Moresco.

“It depends how much I drive, this gets about 22 to the gallon which isn’t great,” said Kathleen Moresco, who drives a Ford.

Many drivers say they are looking for better gas mileage and fewer emissions.

That’s what the California Air Resources Board plus Volkswagen, BMW, Honda and Ford plan to do.

“For my next car I think I would want this one as a hybrid electric,” said Moresco.

The Associated Press reports in the deal, the fleet of new vehicles would average about 36 miles per gallon by model year 2026.

“You’re going to see the commitment that Honda’s always had to more fuel-friendly cars and they are continuing that vehicles by having more hybrid’s and plug-in hybrids,” said David Idell, Sunset Honda San Luis Obispo sales manager.

However, this agreement goes against the Trump Administration’s efforts to set a more relaxed national standard.

An Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) spokesperson, called the deal a “PR stunt” saying it “does nothing to further the one national standard that will provide certainty and relief for American consumers.”

The potential for bigger price tags is unattractive for some.

“In the long run, if I’m still commuting, it might be a good idea to switch over, but for now as a new graduate I don’t think I would be able to afford depending on what they are trying to offer,” said Marisol Magana, a San Luis Obispo resident.

Idell says Honda tries to make newer cars worth it.

“Everything goes up a little bit but at the end of the day they are consistently focusing on that cars are at a good value for the consumer even with the new technology for the fuel economy,” said Idell.

The Obama Administration approved similar fuel efficient requirements. This new deal is just one year off from that original goal.

According to AP, the four automakers make up about 30% of US new car sales.