U.S. EPA to examine claim that Ford hybrids fail to get 47 mpg

DETROIT Mon Dec 10, 2012 7:41pm EST

DETROIT Dec 10 (Reuters) - U.S. regulators will review claims by Consumer Reports magazine that two Ford Motor Co hybrid models fall far short of their official fuel economy figures of 47 miles per gallon.

Last week, Consumer Reports said their tests showed that the Fusion sedan got a combined 39 miles per gallon while the C-Max crossover got just 37 miles per gallon.

The Environmental Protection Agency "will look at the report and data," the agency said in a short statement.

Ford said it would cooperate with the EPA if the company gets involved. The automaker said differences in driving styles could cause real-world gas mileage to vary, adding that some drivers reported getting more than 47 miles per gallon.

Consumer Reports said the Fusion hybrid was off by eight miles, while the C-Max fell 10 miles short of the official EPA mileage figures. The magazine said more than 80 percent of the vehicles it tested were within two miles per gallon of the estimate.

Improving the fuel efficiency of its lineup has been a pillar of Ford's strategy for the past six years. The No. 2 U.S. automaker expects to wind up with 11 percent of the U.S. market for electrified vehicles this year.

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