Check out this bar graph on A Penny Saved…  on gas prices in 2005, check out how much less we pay for gasoline than the rest of the world. Now, it should be noted that since all countries pay roughly the same wholesale price for petroleum, the difference comes in taxes. European nations have always had much higher taxes than the United States because many of them have nationalized healthcare, family incentives, and all sorts of other government (common-use) assistance programs (for example in Germany, the government will give you money to subsidize starting a family and buying a home). All those assistance programs have to be funded by something so it would be understandable gasoline prices are much higher there.
You can’t really look at the graph and draw any far reaching conclusions but it is interesting to wonder what it would be like if, in an effort to affect consumer behavior, jacked up the taxes so that we were paying $6/gallon in gas. Detroit wouldn’t like that very much.