This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

October 22, 2008

DOE and EPA Release the 2009 Fuel Economy Guide

DOE and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unveiled the 2009 Fuel Economy Guide on October 15, providing consumers with detailed information about the fuel economy, carbon footprint, and air pollution score for model year 2009 vehicles, as well as information about hybrids, alternative fuel vehicles, electric vehicles, and fuel cell vehicles. For mainstream vehicles, the Toyota Prius continues to lead the pack in terms of fuel economy, sharing the top-ten list with six other hybrids, including three Ford hybrids that tied for fourth place. The smart fortwo convertible and coupe tied for fifth place, joining the Toyota Yaris as the top-ranking small cars. In addition, the manual and automatic versions of the diesel-fueled Volkswagen Jetta and Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen landed in seventh and eighth place, marking the debut of clean diesel vehicles on the top-ten list. And for the first time, the Fuel Economy Guide also includes a version for mobile users, allowing people to easily check the fuel economy, estimated annual fuel cost, and carbon footprint of cars as they shop. See the EPA press release, the EPA's list of fuel economy leaders, and the Fuel Economy Web site.

The EPA has also updated its Green Vehicle Guide, which provides information about the fuel economy, air pollution emissions, and greenhouse gas emissions for specific models and configurations of vehicles. Because some versions of vehicles are only available in certain states, the Green Vehicle Guide allows consumers to search by state. For the first time, clean diesel vehicles such as the Volkswagen Jetta can be found in the listing for California and other states that have adopted California's tough emissions standards. These "50-state" clean diesels also three 2009 model year vehicles from Mercedes-Benz: the GL 320 BlueTEC, the ML 320 BlueTEC, and the R 320 Bluetec. Because these are the first clean diesel vehicles offered in the United States, meeting the federal requirements for "advanced lean-burn-technology motor vehicles," they qualify for federal tax credits ranging from $900 to $1,800. See the EPA's Green Vehicle Guide and the list of tax credits for clean diesels on the Fuel Economy Web site.