More Fuel Efficient Trucks on the Way, But Can You Afford One?

January 15, 2015

Truck Fuel Efficiency Is On The Rise

Everybody loves saving money on gasoline, especially independent truckers. More miles per gallon might just make or break your profit, but the long-term savings come at the cost of the initial investment. Are you ready to buy a new truck just yet?

New EPA rules already mandated higher MPG for pickups and semis a few years ago. By the spring of 2015, we'll hear about the next round of standards that will apply to model year 2018 and later.

The desire for greater efficiency has to do with a lot more than going green. Here's why truck manufacturers are being told to reduce fuel consumption:

  • Lower fuel costs should improve the bottom line for owner/operators and big businesses alike
  • Reduced fuel costs should lower the price of goods, saving American consumers some money in the long run
  • Lower fuel demand could reduce the American dependence on foreign oil

Figuring the Costs and Savings of Efficient Trucks

But who pays for the fuel-efficiency technology when the first line new trucks hits the market? For the most part, truckers themselves foot the bill.

Consider this: the last round of standards kicked in for 2014 model year. The EPA admits that the average price increased by about $6,200. In return, the EPA tells truckers to expect long-term savings of $73,000. So, when you log thousands of miles per week, the savings really do add up. If you can afford a new truck with even slightly higher MPG, you will save money.

Hopefully, new technology and smart trucking regulations will limit the cost increases for future trucks. Right now, truckers have a few good options: 1) sell your old truck now and buy one that meets modern fuel standards, 2) stand pat, save a little extra money, and hope that prices are still fair in a few years.

Can you afford to buy a new truck now, or can you afford to wait?

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