The Jeep Wrangler’s current not-so-good fuel economy is made possible by the wonderful gas mileage of the PT Cruiser. Under current federal regulations, all models sold by a car manufacturer are lumped together to determine if they are meeting the current EPA fuel economy guidelines. Because the PT Cruiser is a sipper, and not too many other Chrysler made vehicles are gas hogs, the Wrangler is allowed to get 16-18 miles to the gallon. But all of this will change in the future.
With the new rules changes passed by the department of transportation a few weeks ago, each individual car model will be forced to comply with federal regulations. What does this mean? It means that in 2011 the Jeep Wrangler will be forced to obtain a 28 mpg fuel economy rating. That’s not too shabby, but it is quite possible that in 2011 all of our vehicles will be powered by ethanol or something else.
Because the Cruiser gets strong gas mileage, the sport-utility vehicles with poorer fuel economy can squeak by the government’s mileage standards for a fleet.
But that is about to change.
The U.S. Department of Transportation issued rules six weeks ago that, after 2010, require vehicle-specific mileage standards. Until then, the company can choose to follow individual vehicle standards or use fleet rules.