Turns out, your car's engine is useless about a third of the time when you're driving. Bosch is using that math to estimate that the newest generation of its stop-start system could cut a car's overall fuel use by about 10 percent.
After a four-plus-year hiatus, Honda will resume production of minicars (a.k.a. Kei cars, vehicles with engine displacements of 660 cc or less) for Japan. Coming first for the Honda line-up is a yet-to-be unveiled wagon-type minivehicle that's scheduled to roll off the lines this December.
Johnson Controls announced Wednesday that it's investing $100 million to construct a stop-start automotive battery factory in China. The facility will supply global and local automakers in Asia and is expected to gear up for production in early 2013. Kim Metcalf-Kupres, vice president strategy, sales and marketing at Johnson Controls Power Solutions says China, "will continue to be the fastest growing market for automobiles through the end of this decade."
U.S. automotive supplier Johnson Controls says that, over the next two years, it will nearly triple its investment in two German facilities that manufacture batteries for vehicles equipped with stop-start technology. Alex Molinaroli, head of the Johnson Controls' automotive battery division, told Reuters that, "We will invest 275 million euros ($389 million U.S. at the current exchange rate) in our battery plants in Hanover and Zwickau."
German-based Schaeffler Group, a leading supplier of torque converters, says that it has developed an easily integrated stop-start system for vehicles equipped with automatic transmissions. According to Schaeffler, fitting a slushbox with stop-start tech is difficult because the torque converter between the engine and trans is always engaged. However, Schaeffler claims it has designed a permanently engaged starter that transforms the torque converter into, as Ward's Auto says, "a useful weapon i
Worldwide sales of vehicles equipped with stop-start technology (aka micro hybrids) will soar in the coming decade, rising from three million units in 2011 to 37.3 million units annually by 2020, according to Pike Research. At that level, stop-start technology will be standard equipment in more than one-third of all light-duty vehicles sold.
PowerGenix, a manufacturer of rechargeable nickel-zinc (NiZn) batteries, has unveiled its first prototype power pack developed exclusively for the burgeoning micro-hybrid (aka stop-start or idle-stop) segment. PowerGenix claims that its NiZn batteries offer several advantages over the lead-acid units typically found in most of today's micro-hybrids. NiZn batteries are approximately half the size and weight of their lead-acid counterparts and boast a significantly longer lifespan. These performan
A123 Systems is looking to cash in on the emerging stop/start hybrid market with its 12V Nanophosphate lithium-ion battery. Compared to typical lead-acid AGM batteries, A123 says that its li-ion units offer enhanced charge acceptance, which reduces the load on the vehicle's alternator and engine, leading to improved fuel economy. In addition, Jeff Kessen, A123's vice president of automotive marketing and communication, claims that the firm's 12V li-ion battery weighs 60 percent less than a lead-
As has been predicted before, micro-hybrid technology (a.k.a. stop-start or idle-stop), will dominate the automotive industry within the next five years. This is according to a report from Lux Research, where senior analyst Jacob Grose is predicting that global sales of micro-hybrids will outpace both battery-powered autos and full hybrid vehicles in the near future. In the report, titled ""Micro-hybrids: On the Road to Hybrid Vehicle Dominance," Lux figures that global sales of micro-hybrids wi
Continental AG has teamed up with Maxwell Technologies to make their booster module more convenient and efficient. Called an E-booster, the new module is part of PSA Peugeot Citroën's mild-hybrid system, called e-HDI. Maxwell technologies is supplying their Boostcap ultracapacitors to Continental AG for the new module. Ultracapacitors have an ideal characteristic – power density – needed in a mild-hybrid system. With the new E-booster, a diesel engine can be restarted in 400 mil
Citroën DS4 – Click above for high-res image gallery
We've discussed the virtues of stop-start technology (aka micro hybrid) before and we've even touched on many of the upcoming models that are slated to receive this fuel-saving technology soon, but we never really expected that the stop-start system would become so widespread in application that even vehicles like BMW's vaunted M3 would be scheduled to receive the micro hybrid setup soon.
With much of our discussions focusing on hybrid powertrains and the electric cars of tomorrow, we occasionally overlook some of the simpler, efficiency-boosting technologies available today. A prime example of this is the second-generation micro-hybrid stop-start technology from Valeo called i-StARS. Set to debut later this year, the system will initially be featured on diesel-powered Peugeot and Citroen vehicles. A lot of them. Valeo hopes that its i-StARS micro-hybrid technology reaches one mi
It's easy to calculate that a car with the engine running but not moving is getting zero mpg. New technologies allow some cars to take control of the on/off switch from the driver when stopped. Whatever their name - stop-start, micro hybrid - automatic systems that shut down a vehicle's engine when the car is at rest help boost efficiency. Automakers - especially in Europe - are happily introducing the technology to vehicles like the Fiat 500 to the Audi A4 and A5 to Ford vehicles that will get
Stop & Start technology, also known as mild hybrization, is a relatively simple technology that can easily reduce fuel consumption in vehicles. Regular readers already know how it works. Basically, in most instances, the engine shuts down instead of idling, for instance at traffic lights, and stores enough energy to start right back up when the driver presses the gas pedal or shifts into the first gear. This technology can now be found in most car types, and is especially popular in Europe.
Letting engines idle away needlessly while a vehicle is at rest is a practice that's definitely on its way out. Some refer to the technology that ends this behavior automatically as stop/start, while others prefer the term micro hybrid. Whatever the case, the underlining technology is the same. The trick lies in making it all work seamlessly and keeping auxiliary bits like the air conditioning compressor and power steering pump working without the power of the internal combustion engine; a small
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