According to the NHTSA, more than $37 million in fines were collected last year for cars sold in 2007 from manufacturers that failed to meet current CAFE standards. Of the six manufacturers that paid fines, Mercedes-Benz was hit the hardest, racking up an astounding $28.9 million bill that was paid in December. That's a huge figure, especially in this troubled automotive market, but it's actually a bit smaller than the $30.3 million fine paid by DaimlerChrysler the previous year -- a figure that still holds the record. Go Daimler!
Other marques that failed to meet CAFE requirements included Volkswagen, which was hit with a $4.5 million sum, along with Porsche and Maserati, both of which paid fees of $1.2 million and Ferrari, which managed to skate by with a relatively paltry $1.1 million fine.
With increasingly strict regulations expected in the near future, these fines don't exactly bode well for the manufacturers of higher-end luxury vehicles, and the fact that the timing for these requirements is still undecided makes it even tougher to plan for them.