Norm, you are absolutley right... Alternative fuel vehicles like E85, hybrid, and plug-in hybrids do get a huge break on CAFE (which is why the 3.6 flex fuel engines across the line is incredibly important) but there is a cap. Only pure electrics are uncapped.
We can get into that math later, first lets explain how CAFE works in general and why volume is important. Note what I said about having flex fuel vehicles across the board. Because there are many many more of those being built than hybrids, they will affect the average substantially, this mill make sense later.
Furthermore, since CAFE is calculated on a harmonic mean, the amount of miles driven is the common factor and 47mpg isn't a huge factor when compared to the 22mpg the trucks get because of volume. So yes volume of vehicle can direct affect the reciprocal based averages and the fact that only 2% of the vehicles produced by Ford make the giant numbers makes the weight less.
The math is interesting and they use an average of the city and highway mileage, not just the biggest number which can really beat up on some vehicles that have big highway claims
If I have a fleet of 100,000 vehicles and lets say 30% gets 20mpg and 40% gets 30mpg and 25% get 15mpg and 5% gets 47mpg. Then we assume the fleet will travel the same number of miles....
Total miles = 100,000
Total gallons = 30000/20 + 40000/30 + 25000/15 + 5000/47
Average Fuel Economy is equal too
1 / (.3/20 + .4/30 + .25/15 + .05/47) = 1/.04603 = 21.7 CAFE
If you took away the 5% of hybrids at 47 mpg and added them to the 30 mpg car sales the CAFE would increase to 23.99...
However if you took away the 5% from the 30 mpg group and added it to the 47 mpg hybrid cars making them 10% of sales the CAFE would only change to 22.00.
The change is higher if the hybrid sales went away altogether! This is just an example but it proves volume is important and even with the adders given to hybrids they still need volume to have a large effect on CAFE.
So that's the mystery of CAFE if anyone didnt know and why, in my opinion, Ford should be focusing on alternative fuels and diesel like Chrysler and not wasting money in the Hybrid game. So no, I don't believe Ford looks good for 2014 if they are still dabbling in electrics and hybrids.