High Gas Prices Are Good for Detroit

Demand rising for electric alternatives, so makers, legislators must seize moment
By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 9, 2008 12:25 PM CDT
Toyota is working on an entire line of hybrid vehicles based on its next-generation Prius, the Wall Street Journal reports.   (AP Photo)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – Sky-high gas prices are finally pushing top US auto-makers to turn out fuel-efficient vehicles, and both Detroit and Washington should keep the pedal down to make a permanent change in how, and what, Americans drive, the US top car salesman tells the Wall Street Journal. "You have to tell the American people the truth," the CEO of AutoNation says. "Energy costs will be higher." 

"For once we actually have viable alternatives and exciting technology that are really game changers," Mike Jackson says. "However, if the price of petroleum goes down … it undercuts the viability of new technology." He's wary of rumblings in Congress, particularly in an election year, about pushing gas prices down: "If we have cheap gasoline, it's mission impossible."