Ford is talking to the US Environmental Protection Agency about how it tests fuel economy performance on new vehicles. These talks were spurred on by reports that the new Fusion Hybrid and C-max Hybrid are falling short of the mileage ratings assigned by Ford. The EPA only tests about 15% of new vehicles, while the rest are tested by the manufacturer following strict guidelines given by the EPA. While these claims affect the Fusion Hybrid and C-max Hybrid, the EPA have yet to mention if this will also include the upcoming Fusion Energi and the C-max Energi as well.
Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s Chief of Operations in North and South America said “[Ford] will continue to talk on behalf of the industry with the EPA to determine if changes are necessary.” The EPA has made changes in the past as vehicle technology has changed.
Ford’s newest hybrids, the C-max Hybrid and Fusion Hybrid came up 21% and 17% short of the rated fuel economy numbers in tests by Consumer Reports.
Ford isn’t asking the EPA to make any specific modifications to its mileage tests, and sales haven’t been hurt by the controversy. Hinrichs said many owners are actually getting better than rated numbers in real world driving.
“We’re seeing great sales. We follow the EPA test guidelines and we’re proud of the fuel economy and technology in our vehicles.”
Last month, Ford sold 4m848 C-max hybrids and 1,834 Fusion hybrids.