Quality changes in 2001 model-year cars had a value of $212.67 on average, representing 50.3 percent of the average $422.51 yearly increase in manufacturers' suggested list prices.
Of the $212.67 estimated retail level of quality change in domestic passenger cars, over half was due to non-mandated quality changes such as powertrain improvements, theft protection, safety improvements, and changes in levels of standard or optional equipment. Non-mandated quality changes were valued at $119.86.
Changes to comply with 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments accounted for $67.65 of the value of quality change. Safety changes for internal trunk releases in accordance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 401 accounted for $1.92, while other federally mandated safety improvements accounted for $23.24.
These data are a product of the BLS Producer Price Index program. Learn more in "Report on Quality Changes for 2001 Model Vehicles," news release USDL 00-331 (PDF 11K). The estimates on the value of quality changes were based on a sample of 18 model-year 2001 domestic passenger cars included in the Producer Price Index for October.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Value of quality changes in 2001 model-year cars at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2000/nov/wk2/art02.htm (visited December 02, 2022).