Many fine vehicles are kept off the U.S. market by arbitrary U.S. regulations. From Eric Peters ate ericpetersautos.com:
To get some idea of what we’ve lost, it’s instructive to consider what we never got.
For example, the ’96 Toyota Hilux Surf a friend of my old college buddy’s son bought recently. You have probably never heard of the Hilux – even though you have probably heard of the 4Runner.
They are both the same thing, except for one very important thing.
The Hillux Surf is powered by a 3.0 liter diesel engine and is capable of better than 40-miles -per-gallon. This is about twice the mileage you’d get out of a 4Runner, which was only available – in the United States – with a gas engine.
You might ask, why? – given the pretended governmental obsession with high fuel economy uber alles, the foundational justification for the federal government’s Corporate Average Fuel Economy regime. Well, because it is just that.
Or rather, it is the excuse.
CAFE – as it is known in acronym-speak – has been around since the ’70s, when the federal government first got into the weird business of dictating to the car industry how much fuel the vehicles built for sale could use – on the assumption that the people who bought vehicles could not direct the course of that via their dollars.
How it is that the government – how is it that the regulatory apparat – acquired this power is itself an interesting question as well as a weird thing as there is nothing in the Constitution endowing the federal government with the power to decree how many miles-per-gallon the cars people buy must get. And which the companies that build cars are punished for not building, via fines that act as the “incentive” to not build them, in spite of people wanting to buy them. Viz, the soon-to-be-cancelled Dodge Charger/Challenger and Chrysler 300, all of which sell well but which use “too much” gas, for the government’s liking.