The last time Congress raised fuel economy standards was in 1975, when cars and light trucks
in the U.S. were averaging 13 miles per gallon. More than 30 years later, average fuel economy has stagnated at around 20 mpg. Congress is close to upping the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards once again, possibly to 35 mpg by 2020. The new standards would present "a significant technical and economic challenge to the industry," according to GM chairman and CEO Rich Wagoner, who then added, "GM is prepared to put forth its best effort" to meet that challenge.