13 Aug 2009 01:08:05
US vehicle trade in scheme having a noticeable effect
Large people carriers (SUVs) and pick-up trucks account for 83 percent of the cars that have so far been traded under a scheme to encourage low-emission vehicle purchases in the US.
According to the Guardian, some 316,189 cars have been exchanged through the US department of transport's new scheme, which offers buyers up to $4,500 (£2,700) towards the cost of newer, more fuel-efficient vehicles.
Launched at the end of last month in order to provide a boost to the ailing car manufacturing industry, the scheme suggests that people in the US are beginning to turn away from so-called "gas guzzlers", the newspaper reports.
Among the vehicles being traded in the most often were the Ford Explorer, Ford F150 Pickup, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Caravan.
Consumers were also found to be turning instead to cars that are, on average, 63 per cent less polluting - the most popular models were the Toyota Corolla, Ford Focus, Honda Civic and Toyota Prius.
Despite the change, the World Resources Institute's transport analyst Chris Ganson told the Guardian: "We think there will be some emissions reduction but it will just be a very small percentage of emissions from transportation.
"It's still just a drop in the bucket."http://www.dot.gov/affairs/2009/dot11009.htm