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Old 10-03-2010, 09:10 AM   #11 (permalink)
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The problem with lean burn is NOX emissions. Direct injection allows higher compression on lower quality fuel. It may also allow higher air-fuel ratios without NOX issues. Not sure about that but the higher compression accomplishes the same result without NOX issues.

Many manufacturers tried lean burn a couple of decades ago. The best comparison of the mileage difference would be the Federal and California versions of the Honda Civic VX.

Direct injection cools the in combustion temperature by transferring the heat to the incoming fuel charge for better atomization and higher compression. It may eventually evolve into a real HCCI design which will allow true lean burning with virtually no regulated emissions.

If (or when) they perfect a HCCI IC gasoline engine, the potential elimination of any after combustion treatment of exhaust emissions may actually be a consequence of that evolution of the IC engine. 60% conversion of fuel energy, combined with integrated pulse and glide of the power planet while the vehicle operates independently of the power plants function will produce the proverbial 100 MPG car.

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Old 10-03-2010, 09:21 AM   #12 (permalink)
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My car has a 10.1:1 compression ratio. Nothing too special, but high enough. It also earns ulev rating, if not sulev iirc, this is because of many things, but I believe lean burn is one of them. My tuner knows what lean burn looks like, so I trust his judgement.
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Old 10-03-2010, 09:36 AM   #13 (permalink)
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The previous generation Prius had 13.5 to 1 compression, ran on regular fuel and did not have lean burn.

Lean burn can be easily determined by reading the voltage generated by the O2 sensor.

I don't think your Saturn has lean burn, but it can easily be confirmed by a simple voltage reading.

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