And that idle shut down / starter thing mentioned above is a very similar example. The manufacturers are basically being forced to do things that they KNOW are bad for their cars just to increase MPG. I wonder if 0W-20 vs. 5W-30 fits this category as well.
But they have no choice due to CAFE. And if you look at profitability across a manufacturer's lineup, you'll typically see that they make a ton of $$ on certain popular cars, and they actually lose money on the cars nobody wants - and those are the high MPG cars that are effectively subsidized just so they can get the sales to balance against the profitable cars to meet fleet-wide CAFE requirements and also keep shareholders happy by making some $$. So it means if you're buying a high MPG car, it is likely to be a better deal because the manufacturer is willing to sell it just so they can sell the low-MPG counterpart that IS profitable.
The net effect is that fleet MPG numbers will be rising, but at the same time, longevity of those cars is not. VCM is Honda's big problem, but most manufacturers have their own - the problems are widespread. And for the MPG/EPA fans, they see reduced longevity as a good thing too, since they consider older cars to be a problem. Every year or so, here in CA, I get an automated letter from the DMV offering to buy my old air-cooled Porsche 911 for $1500. And if that makes you laugh, I think they started at $500. They probably think I'm holding out for $2000, and are playing hardball.