Reps from all three Detroit automakers met with the United Auto Workers July 12 to discuss the higher federal fuel-economy standards being proposed by the Obama administration. This was the latest in a series of regular meetings between GM, Ford,. and Chrysler and UAW President Bob King on the issue. The White House is weighing an increase of the Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE, standards from the current target of 35.5 mpg by 2016 to 56 mpg by 2025. The standards apply to both cars and light trucks.
Automakers are lobbying against the stricter standards. The union is also concerned about the impact the increase would have on its members, because they would likely force an even more dramatic shift away from trucks and sport utility vehicles to small cars than the one already under way.
A recent poll of 800 likely voters in Michigan found that 78 percent favor higher federal fuel-economy standards.