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Old Ads Remind Us How Little MPG Progress We Have Made


I unpacked a box that was stuffed with newspaper. The ad, a Ford ad, advertised “79 Ford Pacesetters.”

That was a year in which we were, like today, very conscious of fuel economy.

Granted, these MPG ratings would be lower by today’s EPA formula, but only a little. And the real point is to show how poorly we have progressed on energy efficiency. Also, I’m not picking on Ford. It’s just that this was the ad that emerged from the box.

Ford Fiesta: 28/39

Pinto: 22/32

Futura: 20/31

Mustang; 21/31

Fairmont: 20/31

Today’s comparables

Focus 24/33

Fusion 20/28

Taurus 18/28


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