By David Shepardson
Washington — The Obama administration has finalized the landmark 2017-25 fuel economy rules that will nearly double the efficiency of the nation’s cars and trucks over the next 13 years to a fleetwide average of 54.5 miles per gallon.
The new rules will reshape what Americans drive — and may prod automakers to add fuel saving technologies at a faster rate. The rules also give automakers credits for building hybrid light trucks and adding fuel saving features that the government didn’t take into account in prior years.
The White House Office of Management and Budget said in a notice posted Tuesday morning that it had cleared the fuel economy rules on Monday. Auto lobbyists say the administration plans a 12:30 p.m. call Tuesday on the finalized rules.
The Obama administration initially planned to finalize the rule by July 31, but the final regulation has been held up by an extensive White House review.
Last summer, the Obama administration won the support of 13 major automakers, including Detroit’s Big Three, for the 2017-25 rules, which will cost the industry $157.3 billion, according to the preliminary proposal.