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Energy Efficient Autos Best Holiday Gift

The iPad may be the biggest gift on Christmas gifts this year, but its fuel efficient automobiles that are really the best deal this holiday season. A...

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|Dec 13|magazine4 min read

The iPad may be the biggest gift on Christmas gifts this year, but it’s fuel efficient automobiles that are really the best deal this holiday season. A new government data reveals that Christmas morning, fuel efficient vehicles could be in everyone’s driveway.

The 2011 Fuel Economy Guide lists more than 160 high mileage models – like those listed in our January piece on today’s hottest hybrids – and includes those vehicles with “advanced technology,” including autos running on biofuels, compressed natural gas, clean diesel and electricity.

“The good news for consumers is that competition among automakers is driving progress. Auto manufacturers are racing each other to bring fuel-efficient autos to market," said Dave McCurdy, President & CEO, Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. "When it comes to determining the success of energy-efficient technologies, consumers are in the driver's seat. As automakers, our job is to develop and introduce vehicles that run on alternative fuels or deploy energy saving technologies."

However, consumer demand highlights the opposite – while an increase in highly efficient models has grown, consumer purchasing numbers in the energy-effieicnt models have decreased by nearly 8 percent, while overall vehicle sales have increased by 11 percent. Just a year ago hybrid sales had reached an unprecedented 3 percent in total US passenger vehicle sales, but that numbers won’t be duplicated this year, say industry experts.

"Auto makers are working hard to keep the costs down on these new fuel-efficient technologies and ensure they remain affordable," said McCurdy. "If the cost of new technology goes up too high or too fast, sticker shock will scare a lot of customers away."