Survey of Auto Execs Sees Higher Gasoline Prices, Fuel Economy

If the forecasts come to pass, it could lead to changes in buying habits that could create difficulties for auto makers.

Published: 17-Jan-2007

DETROIT (MarketWatch) -- Fuel prices and fuel economy standards are expected to "rise dramatically" in the next decade, possibly putting further pressure on auto makers in the U.S., according to a survey of industry experts conducted by the University of Michigan.

Gasoline will average slightly more than $4 a gallon by 2015 and just more than $5 by 2020, according to a survey of more than 100 automotive manufacturers, suppliers and other experts conducted by the university's Transportation Research Institute Automotive Analysis Division.

Those surveyed said they also expect the Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE, standards for cars to increase from 27.5 miles per gallon today to 33 mpg in 2015 and 38 mpg in 2020. For trucks, those surveyed expect CAFE standards, which are imposed by the federal government on auto makers in the U.S., to rise from the current 21.6 mpg to 27 mpg in 2015 and 31 mpg in 2020.

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