How big a contributor to oil use are SUVs?
SUVs are about 1/4 of new cars sold, I canâ€™t find figures for the total number of SUVs. People talk about SUVs because they have led the trend to lower fuel economy in US automobiles, and they are often brought up as a shorthand for talking about the fuel efficiency of US autos.
From googling a bit:
US autos account for 11% of world oil consumption, 8 million barrels per day.
SUVs, due to average lower fuel efficiency, take 33% more gas than cars. So letâ€™s assume that SUVs are 15% of US autos. Then a switch to 5% SUVs in the US would save 0.3 million barrels per day, or 0.4% of world oil demand and 2% of US oil demand. So SUVs by themselves are fairly minor.
Increasing average fuel effciency of US autos by 5 MPG would save 1.3 million barrels per day, or reduce world oil demand by 1.8% and US oil demand by 6.5%.
So the fuel economy of US cars is a big deal.