Latent demand for stop-start engine technology?


May 5, 2008

May 5, 2008 UK-based car supermarket group Motorpoint sells cars into every postcode in the UK each year and relies heavily on surveys to watch for coming trends in order to continue to meet public motoring needs. The latest informational gem to be released by the group is that a recent survey shows that 75% of UK drivers say they would buy a car that automatically cuts and restarts the engine in traffic – this is notable because the technology is straightforward and readily available to any auto manufacturer but suffers from restricted availability.

Stop-start engine technology offers up to 8% less fuel consumption in urban driving conditions and fuel savings was the top reason for the demand voiced in the Motorpoint survey.

In practice, the technology – essentially a beefed up starter motor and enhanced engine electronics – stops the engine when the driver comes to a halt and takes the car out of gear. Pressing the clutch automatically restarts the car.

Only Citroen, BMW and Mini (aka BMW) offer stop-start on non-hybrid vehicles at present but most manufacturers are expected to introduce stop-start, on both manuals and automatics, over the next few years - either across the range or on designated ‘green’ models.

Motorpoint operations director Paul Winfield said: “In these days of increasing fuel prices and demands for lower CO2 emissions, its surprising that this tried and tested technology isn’t already more widespread.

About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, (Australia's largest Telco), (Australia's largest employment site),,, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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