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Form 6197, Gas Guzzler Tax

The gas guzzler tax is imposed on the sale, use, or lease by the manufacturer or importer of an automobile of a model type that does not meet certain standards for fuel economy. Automobiles imported for business or personal use are subject to the tax. The tax liability is figured each quarter and reported on Form 720.

The estimate for your car is 21.3 miles per gallon and $1,300 is the penalty for cars like yours that score at least 20.5 mpg but less than 21.5 mpg. Cars need a rating of at least 22.5 mpg to avoid the tax.

In other words Gas Guzzler Tax is assessed on new cars that do not meet required fuel economy levels. These taxes apply only to passenger cars. Congress established Gas Guzzler Tax provisions in the Energy Tax Act of 1978 to discourage the production and purchase of fuel-inefficient vehicles

The gas guzzler tax is being paid on a one-time filing. Trucks, minivans, and sport utility vehicles (SUV) are not covered because these vehicle types were not widely available in 1978 and were rarely used for non-commercial purposes. The IRS is responsible for administering the gas guzzler program and collecting the taxes from car manufacturers or importers. The amount of tax is posted on the window stickers of new cars - the lower the fuel economy, the higher the tax.

If you import a gas guzzling automobile, you may be eligible to make a one-time filing for which no employer identification number is needed and no deposit is required.

Fuel Economy is calculated in Miles per Gallon (MPG) of the Automobile model type and the tax rates are;

S.No. At least But Less Than Tax Rate
1 22.5 - $ 0
2 21.5 22.5 $ 1,000
3 20.5 21.5 $ 1,300
4 19.5 20.5 $ 1,700
5 18.5 19.5 $ 2,100
6 17.5 18.5 $ 2,600
7 16.5 17.5 $ 3,000
8 15.5 16.5 $ 3,700
9 14.5 15.5 $ 4,500
10 13.5 14.5 $ 5,400
11 12.5 13.5 $ 6,400
12 - 12.5 $ 7,700

One-Time Filing

If you import a gas guzzling automobile, you may be eligible to make a one-time filing of Form 720 and Form 6197 if you meet both of the following conditions:

  • You do not import gas guzzling automobiles in the course of your trade or business and
  • You are not required to file Form 720 reporting excise taxes for the calendar quarter, except for a one-time filing


In August 2006, H, an individual, imports a car. The car has a fuel economy rating of 15 mpg, so H is liable for the gas guzzler tax of $4,500 (Form 6197, line 9). H meets the two conditions for a one-time filing, that is, (1) does not import gas guzzling automobiles in the course of his trade or business, and (2) is not otherwise required to file Form 720. He must file Forms 720 and 6197 for the third calendar quarter of 2006. H does not have to deposit the gas guzzler tax of $4,500 but instead pays with the return. H checks the one-time filing box on Form 720.

How to report Gas Guzzler Tax in TaxExcise.com

In TaxExcise.com, you can prepare your Gas Guzzler Excise Tax by creating your own account it is very easy and simple to have your own account, and it is free.

Complete your personal detail by click on “One Time Filing”. You then click “Start a New Return” button on the right side of dashboard choose “Form 720 Quarterly Federal Excise Tax Return. Choose your Tax Year and The Quarter Ending Month. Continue with your Gas Guzzler Tax preparation screen by screen. At any point of time you can call our Help Desk for additional support, we’re more than happy to guide you through the filing process.

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