In the late 1990s, one of GM's annual reports focused on that company's efforts to open the Chinese market to American-made cars. The report stated that GM intended to bring personal transportation to 1 billion Chinese. Investors and oil companies loved the idea of practically limitless profits, and GM continues its commitment to personal mobility in heavily populated Asian nations today.
After the bombing of the World Trade Centers, Americans were barraged with advertisements for vehicles with low- and zero-interest loans. These promotions were almost exclusively for high-consumption vehicles. There were efficient vehicles being produced.
Meanwhile, auto makers are creating a Chinese version of the American dream, with a car in every driveway, and the Chinese are faced with a rapidly growing demand for gasoline that has already outstripped domestic production.
Meanwhile, American and Chinese citizens burn as much gasoline as they can comfortably afford. Hybrid cars are expensive and still consume gasoline. Petroleum resources are finite.