Cars don't need to have their engines running when they're stopped at red lights. That's why a number of automakers have developed start-stop
systems, which stop a car's engine when the vehicle comes to a halt, and start it again as soon as the gas pedal is pressed. Bosch, however, is taking things farther. Its new start-stop system shuts the engine off not only at stops, but also whenever the car is coasting.
technology that shuts off a vehicle’s engine when it comes to a stop to save fuel is a standard feature on many hybrid and electric-vehicles (EVs), including Ford’s Fusion Hybrid
and Escape Hybrid
has now announced its Auto Start-Stop system will be added to conventional cars, crossovers and SUVs in North America from 2012.
BMW has introduced a Competition Package for its class-leading BMW M3 Coupé to enhance the model’s exceptional driving dynamics. At the same time Auto Start-Stop technology becomes a standard feature on all versions of the M3, making it the world’s first high performance car with Auto Start-Stop.
There’s no doubt that when BMW promises, it delivers. Last year we reported from the Paris Motor Show on the unveiling of the Concept X1
, which BMW promised to have to market in 12 months. And, sure enough, one year later here it is: BMW’s first compact SUV (essentially it’s an X5 shrunk to a more city-friendly size) with a choice of two- or four-wheel drive and the first in the X series to have Auto Start-Stop.
One of the bug bears of driving in city traffic – apart from the time delays – is the often deplorable fuel consumption of stop-start driving. To help overcome this, the new Mazda3 2.0 Sport comes with iStop technology which pauses the engine (rather than stopping it), which the company says delivers increased fuel economy while reducing CO2 emissions.
It may sound obvious, but the most effective way to cut a car's fuel consumption is to turn the car off. Of course that isn’t very useful if you're trying to get from A to B. But for many trips, particularly for city driving, a car can be idle for a significant amount of time. Such stop-start driving is far from being fuel-efficient, but Audi has turned that around with a new system that shuts down the engine when the car comes to a stop. The start-stop system joins a new on-board computer, as part of Audi’s modular efficiency platform, which is designed to reduce fuel consumption and cut carbon emissions.