For the first time, the Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday gave auto giant Ford 15 days to revise inaccurate fuel-economy estimates for six of its vehicles.
The agency, which has made increasing the fuel economy of American-made cars, trucks and SUVs one of its top priorities under President Obama, gave Ford 15 days to revise its figures.
"This issue highlights the need for continued strong oversight of the fuel economy labeling program," said Chris Grundler, director of EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality. "Consumers need to trust that fuel economy window stickers are giving consumers reliable and fair estimates of real world fuel economy."
The changes will apply to Ford Fiesta, the Hybrid and Energi versions of the Ford Fusion, the C-Max Hybrid and Energi, and the Lincoln MKZ Hybrid. The MKZ Hybrid will see the largest change, with its fuel-economy claim reduce by 7 miles per gallon. The other five models will see their fuel-economy estimates, listed on the sticker of each vehicle, shrink by 1 to 5 mpg, according to the EPA.
In a statement Thursday, Ford President CEO Alan Mulally apologized to its customers.
"Ford is absolutely committed to delivering top fuel economy and accurate information," he said. "We apologize to our customers and will provide goodwill payments to affected owners. We also are taking steps to improve our processes and prevent issues like this from happening again."
The company also said it "identified an error" during an internal investigation and worked with the EPA to lower the estimates to correct levels.
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