Auto dealers want Trump to weaken car emissions rules

Auto dealers want Trump to weaken car emissions rules

Auto dealers are joining the call from carmakers for President Trump to roll back his predecessor’s aggressive vehicle emissions rules.

At the group’s annual meeting in New Orleans, leaders and members of the National Automobile Dealers Association argued that the greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency rules from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Transportation make cars too expensive, Reuters reported.

“You inflate the price of the vehicle, and a car that was maybe within reach of being affordable now may not be,” said Mark Scarpelli, the group’s new chairman, according to Reuters.

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He estimated that the rules add $1,500 to $3,000 to the cost of a new car, and suggested that a “different phase-in period” could help significantly.

“We need to lighten the load, because the government is trying to force manufacturers to make cars people don't even want,” Sidney DeBoer, founder of dealer group Lithia Motors Inc., told Reuters.

Former President Obama’s rules set a goal of a fleet-wide 54.5 mpg average fuel economy by 2025.

The Obama administration in its final days officially determined that the rules are attainable and shouldn’t change mid-way through, despite pleas from automakers to ease up on the standards.

Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma’s attorney general and Trump’s nominee to lead the EPA, told senators in his confirmation hearing that he would review Obama’s determination and see if officials should try to change the rules.