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Fuel Costs Rising as OEMs Scale Back on Sedans

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May 8, 2018—Fuel prices have hit a three-year high, just as multiple automakers announced plans to scale back on their sedan lineups and shift more toward truck-based vehicles.

According to AAA, the national average for retail gas prices reached $2.81 per gallon of regular on Tuesday, with some major east coast and west coast markets reaching as high as $3.64 per gallon.

CNBC noted that industry forecaster LMC Automotive estimates SUVs and crossovers will make up around 50 percent of all vehicle sales by 2022. And, back in 2008, when gas prices reached a record high around $4.00 per gallon, sales were roughly half that.

The average fuel economy for full-size pickup trucks in 2008 was 15.5 miles per gallon (mpg), and the cost of regular fuel for a full year for the segment at that time was $2,808; in 2018, those numbers are now 18.2 mph and $1,936.

Automakers have made exhaustive efforts in designing more efficient vehicles to weather spikes in gas prices and stricter emissions controls. Still, oil prices are worth keeping an eye on, one industry expert told CNBC. The expert feels consumers will start to grow anxious if and when prices at the pump start to climb above $4.00.

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