via ABG: https://www.autoblog.com/2018/03/28/nhtsa-gas-guzzler-penalties/
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said late on Tuesday it was proposing to cancel a planned hike in higher "gas-guzzler" penalties for automakers whose vehicles fail to meet minimum fuel-economy standards. NHTSA in July suspended a 2016 Obama administration regulation that more than doubled penalties, by an amount NHTSA estimated at $30 million annually. But automakers protested the hike, saying it could increase industry compliance costs by $1 billion annually.
Some automakers including some luxury makers historically have opted to pay fines instead of meeting fuel efficiency requirements. Jaguar Land Rover, owned by India's Tata Motors, and Daimler, which makes Mercedes-Benz vehicles, paid the most in fines in recent years.
Congress ordered federal agencies in 2015 to adjust civil penalties to account for inflation. In response, NHTSA under former President Barack Obama, proposed raising fines for every gallon of fuel that new cars and trucks consume in excess of required standards under the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) program, but delayed the effective date to September 2018.
NHTSA said in a proposed regulation released on Tuesday that it "tentatively concludes" that hiking the penalty would have a "negative economic impact."
New York, California and three other U.S. states in September sued the federal government for delaying the rollout of the higher penalties, as did several environmental groups. A federal appeals court has set an April 12 hearing on the lawsuit. On Tuesday, two major auto trade associations intervened on behalf of the government in the suit. . . .