CHICAGO (CBS) — Spring will be around the corner before we know it, and demand for gasoline will be going up.

As CBS 2’s Kris Habermehl reports, a new published report says we need to get ready for wild swings in the price at the pump.

Tom Kloza of the Oil Price Information Service tells the Chicago Sun-Times that we should expect a spring of wild fluctuation. Kloza tells the Sun-Times’ Gary Strauss that averages are likely to peak at $4.05 nationally, but climb higher in Chicago and many other cities.

In Chicago and other major metropolitan areas, prices could jump to $4.60 or more by May, Kloza tells the Sun-Times.

Habermehl says such severe spikes may result in a trend toward downsized cars in the near future.

Prices already hit their highest level ever for the month of January this year, with an average of $3.69 for Cook County. AAA spokeswoman Beth Mosher said last week that the spike would have been even worse if not for sluggish demand.

Experts added last week that with Persian Gulf tensions ratcheting up over Iranian nuclear ambitions, oil prices are not likely to come down anytime soon.

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