Your welcome to pollute your country as much as you want, for no other reason than because you can, but when your pointless emissions effects the rest of the world, including me, them it justs sounds plain greedy.
Having been across the pond, I can safely say that I find it unlikely that the US will EVER become as polluted as Europe, and that Europe is such a mess that I have a hard time believing you'd notice anything that blows from here to there.
I hate to get back into this, but I couldn't pass up what turned up during some research tonight. I found a 91'-'93ish Subaru Justy (base) for $800, so I was looking up fuel economy figures. It stacks up pretty well at ~34mpg avg. Well, I also checked out the best/worst list. EVERY single vehicle on the worst list is a European make. I'll admit that the only American cars on the best list are the Chevy Malibu Maxx and the Euro-designed Ford Focus wagon, but the finger pointing about emissions goes back solidly at those luxury Euro-micro-beasts, ie. Aston Martin DB9 Volante 12cyl 5.9L *Micro-compact*. :o In the U.S., engines of that size go in mid to full sized sports/luxury cars and trucks... I'm not condemning Europeans on their choices of fast, tiny, cars but it does show that the U.S. is certainly not lagging behind in the efficiency numbers here.
EDIT: Can't forget to post the Truck/SUV/Van numbers...
Actually my 1.3l carbureted Mazda 121(late 1995) is a really sweet thing to drive... relatively effortless acceleration(but it does require some very quick swinging through gears), quiet, smooth engine, and it's nice, quiet and stable at 120km/h(assuming that'd be almost equivalent to 70MPH). And remember it's only producing 45kW and with some pitiful amount of torque...Plus it runs on the smell of an oily rag(not sure of the figures, but I only need to top it up once a week at most). The only major gripe I have with it is the way-too-boomy Clarion sound system in it- inaudible at lower volumes, far too tinny with the bass turned off, and quite distractingly vibrates literally **everything** at a normal volume..
Compare this to my dear mother's mid '94 Holden(Isuzu) Rodeo, at 2.6 litres and more than double the Mazda's power output, it's rattly, smelly, thirsty, and S-L-O-W. Just coz it looks cool and has a cushy, big interior doesn't mean it's a good vehicle.
Basically, I think more people should give little cars a go.
I hate to get back into this, but I couldn't pass up what turned up during some research tonight. I found a 91'-'93ish Subaru Justy (base) for $800, so I was looking up fuel economy figures. It stacks up pretty well at ~34mpg avg. Well, I also checked out the best/worst
Well to be fair, there are a huge number of European cars that are not available here in the states that aren't on that list. They make a vast array of diesel microcars that get incredibly good mileage.
You're all complaining about the price of petrol? What about insurance? I'm not sure what the norm is over in the US, but here in Ireland, at the minimum age (17) you can be looking at paying about... 5000-6000 euros a year on something like a Mistubishi Colt, Honda Civic or a VW Polo. About 3000-400 on a Fiat Punto, Nissan Micra or similar and a bare minimum of about 1500-2500 on something like a (original) Mini or a Nissan March / Old-style Ford Fiesta. Anything with more than a 1.8l engine or something sporty like a VW Golf GTI or Toyata Celica and they will pointblank *refuse* to quote you.
(Not to mention that, on the licence you get when you're 17, you can only drive when accompanied by someone else over the age of 18 with a full licence and that you have to have L-Plates up on the back windscreen at all times. Oh, and petrol (unleaded) is a little over $7 a gallon, Diesel slightly cheaper)
I don't really complain about the price, but the swings in price. What other daily commodity can we expect have a nearly 10% price swing in one day, on a constant basis?
You really have price swings of up to 10%? We consider 5% to be a really big swing, but in the city I'm in we tend to have a lot of gas wars, so often we have huge leaps in price.
Nothing is better than watching gas prices get cut in half, be that way for almost a week, and then swing up just fast enough that everyone goes out to fill up all at once. Once a year, minimum, usually twice.