The crossover utility vehicle (CUV) share of light-duty vehicles has increased, largely at the expense of cars, despite increases in gasoline prices over the previous two years, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). In each month since September 2017, sales of CUVs have exceeded those of cars, a class that includes sedans, hatchbacks, and sports cars. . . .
Vehicle sales shares for pickups, SUVs, and other vehicle types—which typically have much lower fuel economy than sedans and many CUVs—have remained relatively constant in recent years, with pickup shares showing comparatively modest gains. . . .
. . . the change in vehicle shares from cars to CUVs had less effect on fuel consumption compared with other historical shifts in sales, such as the shift from cars to SUVs in the 1990s and early 2000s.
The relatively small variability in annual fuel costs has not been enough to change purchasing trends in the same way that consumers exchanged low fuel economy SUVs for cars and CUVs in the peak of the recession in 2009. At that time, replacing a 20 mile-per-gallon (mpg) vehicle with a 30-mpg vehicle would save an annual 250 gallons when driven 15,000 miles, at a cost savings ranging from $500 ($2/gallon) to $1,000 ($4/gallon), according to EIA. . . .