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Old 12-31-2009, 10:57 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Mazda exec says EPA testing is reason company doesn't have Stop/Start feature in U.S.



This is priceless:

Mazda's US head of product development is pointing the finger at the EPA as the reason it doesn't offer automatic engine start/stop technology in its non-hybrids in North America despite it being a proven, low-tech fuel saver.

Many EcoModder members already know that manually shutting down your engine whenever stopped for more than a few seconds is worth significant fuel savings. Mazda estimates automated start/stop is worth a 7-9% fuel economy boost in sub/urban driving.

The start/stop feature is much more common in Europe & Japan even on plain Jane non-hybrid models. So why doesn't the US market have it?

According to Mazda's Robert Davis...

Quote:
the EPA's city-mode test cycle includes only one complete stop. Because the car stops only once, the Stop/Start feature is only active for a few moments and as a result, it only improves fuel-economy on the test cycle by 0.1 to 0.2 mpg, rather than the nearly double-digit percentage gains that can be had in normal city driving when the engine would spend more time stopped.
Apparently several auto makers are lobbying the EPA to change test procedures to reward the inclusion of start/stop technology.

Am I misreading this, or are the automakers saying, "if it doesn't help our CAFE numbers, screw energy efficiency and the customer!"

EPA is apparently reconsidering city test numbers for this reason, to give stop/start equipped vehicles a better city rating.

Source: Motor Trend

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Old 12-31-2009, 11:40 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi Darin,

I wonder if the regulation included FE numbers from the FuelEconomy.gov web site, which are actual, self-reported fuel use, that this would do several things: the car companies would get credit for what people were actually doing, and it would be a real world incentive for them to encourage people to actually get good mileage?

For example, my car is a 2005 Scion xA with manual 5-speed: the EPA (2007) ratings for this model are : 27/34/30. There are six people reporting an average of 36.4mpg -- this has to be considered a "combined" number, so Scion/Toyota would get credit for 36+ rather than 30mpg. (By the way, my lifetime average for 226 tankfuls is now above 40mpg!)


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Old 12-31-2009, 02:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Like someone pointed out on ABG, there's more than one stop on the city test, so I'm thinking the shut-off interval is so long that the only portion they can take advantage of is in the first part of the hot-start phase. The only way the cost can be $500 is if they're charging extra to install the system at the dealer, since only the most expensive stop/start systems w/ regen braking, probably for mild hybrids, are that expensive. So, yeah, if they can't get credit for it, then consumers be damned, they won't bother.
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Old 12-31-2009, 04:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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MetroMPG -

Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG;150979...

Many EcoModder members already know that [I
manually[/I] shutting down your gasoline engine whenever stopped for more than a few seconds is worth significant fuel savings. Mazda estimates automated start/stop is worth a 7-9% fuel economy boost in sub/urban driving.

The start/stop feature is much more common in Europe & Japan even on plain Jane non-hybrid models. So why doesn't the US market have it?

According to Mazda's Robert Davis...

Apparently several auto makers are lobbying the EPA to change test procedures to reward the inclusion of start/stop technology.

...
Hmmmmm, too bad. Why not offer this as an "eco-option" and charge more money for it like roflwaffle says? I am sure there is a small contingent of people that would pay for this. Try it for one year as an experiment, see what happens, and collect green(washing?) credits in the meantime.

When I think of Mazda, I don't associate them as much with good MPG. I associate them with their "zoom zoom" performance ads. Actually, whenever I have been looking at new cars, it's the EPA MPG ratings of the Mazdas that have crossed them off my list.

I definitely see the benefit of changing the EPA test to reward the start/stop tech. It's a no-brainer. If nothing else, the auto companies should create a very-close-to-EPA test of their own (like an ISO standard) that they can use in their ads. Call it City-SSTech MPG or what not. Build it into the sell.

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Old 12-31-2009, 07:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
[IMG]

Am I misreading this, or are the automakers saying, "if it doesn't help our CAFE numbers, screw energy efficiency and the customer!"

Source: Motor Trend
I think you are reading it the way it is.
With increasing Gov't intervention the focus shifts from delivering what the customer wants to delivering what the Gov't is telling the car makers to deliver.

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Old 12-31-2009, 10:35 PM   #6 (permalink)
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They want to sell cars, they don't care how, they just want to sell their cars. If people want big, they will make them big. If people want high MPG they build high MPG. Right now they are trying for MPG, and they want as much profit with as little work as they can manage.
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Old 10-11-2013, 08:31 AM   #7 (permalink)
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The "EPA excuse" is no longer valid for not offering stop/start

I was reminded of this old thread when I read about the new "segment first" stop/start system in the 2014 Chevrolet Malibu...



Apparently, the EPA cycles now reveal the benefits of such systems, because it shows up in the Malibu's MPG rating. It even affects the highway rating:

Quote:
[The] 2014 Malibu powered by the new 196 bhp (145 kW) 4-cylinder 2.5-liter EcoTec engine is the first car in its segment to come as standard with stop/start technology improving city mileage by 14 percent and highway efficiency by 6 percent
The car is EPA rated 25 mpg city and 36 mpg highway.
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Old 10-11-2013, 09:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Will start-stop eat into hybrid sales?


Quote:
GM has dropped the eAssist version on the 2014 Malibu.

The start-stop system uses a lead-acid battery to improve fuel economy and deliver the same fuel economy as the outgoing model with eAssist, which used lithium ion battery-based technology to enhance mileage.
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Old 10-11-2013, 09:51 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nemo View Post
Will start-stop eat into hybrid sales?
Nope.
It doesn't really save that much fuel IRL.
It saves a lot on the EU's NEDC though, where vehicles spend a disproportionate amount of time stopped.
That's why it's come about.
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Old 10-11-2013, 10:16 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Vehicles do spend a lot of time stopped in the city. In the country, not so much.

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