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Old June 18th, 2013, 13:06   #1
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Default The Internal Combustion Comeback

The Internal Combustion Comeback

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The Jetta TDI is one of a thrifty family of similarly engined VeeDubs that includes the Golf TDI, Passat TDI and VW-owned Audi A3 TDI. “I’m a big fan of these,” Wiesenfelder said. “I believe that the success of Volkswagen diesels, both in their execution and their success in the market, is what has given other manufacturers the confidence to give [diesels] a try.”
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Old June 18th, 2013, 13:25   #2
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These developments are encouraging! One thing puzzles me though... if the automakers are required to achieve a fleet average of 35.5 mpg, how are they going to sell any trucks? Because I don't care what engine you put in it, you can't make a pickup aerodynamic or give it the same power to weight ratio as our small cars without compromising its function.
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Old June 18th, 2013, 14:26   #3
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An average of 35.5 the truck can still get 17mpg if the rest of the fleet balances it out.
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Old June 18th, 2013, 14:51   #4
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Originally Posted by Softrockrenegade View Post
An average of 35.5 the truck can still get 17mpg if the rest of the fleet balances it out.
Precisely... so if the pickups are going to get 17 combined, then the entire rest of the fleet will have to get 53 mpg combined. That pretty much indicates the death of the affordable performance car, among other things. Kinda sad.
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Old June 18th, 2013, 17:07   #5
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Don't forget: these are CAFE numbers. Fleet average MPG is always quite a bit lower than CAFE. I think the 35.5 will come more like around 28-30 for fleet average.
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Old June 19th, 2013, 05:39   #6
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Wasn't one of the big stinks on setting these new fleet/cafe requirements that the light trucks and SUVs were still given a loop hole?

It is nice to see the diesel put in a good light in the press instead of all the "remember grandpas diesel?" crap.
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Old June 21st, 2013, 10:14   #7
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Regarding the CAFE requirement and trucks, it's not that simple. Everyone quotes the one number (which is a fleet average) but it's not just one number. It is a variable that depends on the vehicle's footprint (track width x wheelbase).

Expect to see vehicles with the wheels pushed all the way out to the corners.

Expect regular-cab short box pickup trucks to go away. A Mega Cab long box doesn't get appreciably worse mileage than a regular cab short box but the bigger footprint gives it more leeway.

Compact pickup trucks probably aren't coming back. Same issue with the footprint.

In other words, this system will result in EVEN BIGGER trucks.

The footprint requirement makes sense on the face of it, but it doesn't stop the manufacturers from gaming the system.

Also, there are credits for alternative fuel use (like E85) even though almost no-one uses it in reality.

There are big credits for electric vehicles, too.

So, in the market of the future, expect 24 foot long pickup trucks with a 20 foot wheelbase with the wheels sticking out the sides (see Ford F150 Raptor) and an enormous cab, with an 8.1 litre V8 that is E85 capable. If you purchase one of these then a mandatory option will be an electric car built as cheaply as possible, that fits in the bed and powered (if that is the word) by a single lead-acid battery for a couple of miles (just long enough to get through the Federal Test Procedure). The electric car will be thrown in the garbage the moment the whole deal gets home, but it will have served its purpose of satisfying the regulations.
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Old June 21st, 2013, 10:54   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daekar View Post
These developments are encouraging! One thing puzzles me though... if the automakers are required to achieve a fleet average of 35.5 mpg, how are they going to sell any trucks? Because I don't care what engine you put in it, you can't make a pickup aerodynamic or give it the same power to weight ratio as our small cars without compromising its function.
A 4x4 truck can get 30 mpg. Amarok does. I know it is not 35.5, but that is a fleet average, not individual model. I think a truck could easily get more if people's expectation for acceleration with a load were lower. People all over the world haul loads with much smaller engines than the V6. It is all a matter of perspective, and how impatient you are.

You can haul a load 85 mph or accelerate to 40mph in 3-4 seconds with a load if you have a v8, but that does not make it necessary.
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Old June 23rd, 2013, 18:39   #9
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I like this quote.

Quote:
The introduction of ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel in 2006 has enabled clean diesel vehicles to become contenders for drivers’ attention after decades of being seen as noisy, dirty and slow.
“They tend to deliver a lot of the advantages of the hybrid in terms of efficiency,” Wiesenfelder said. “[But] for me, the modern diesels are better to drive than hybrids.”
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Old June 25th, 2013, 05:25   #10
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Eh, you won't see wheels pushed outside the wheel wells as a normal thing - that hurts fuel economy directly, far more than the benefits in footprint.

For what it's worth, the Passat TDI with a manual gets 46.4 mpg on the CAFE (1978) combined cycle, and that is the most efficient diesel-powered vehicle currently available in the US. (38.2/62.8 are the base numbers, so on the 1985 cycle, that'd be 34/49, 41 combined, when compared to original sticker numbers on a PD or earlier.)

The following MY2013 vehicles beat the future 54.5 mpg CAFE requirement:

Toyota Camry Hybrid XLE: 54.8 MPG
Acura ILX Hybrid: 54.9 MPG
Lexus ES 300h: 55.2 MPG
Toyota Avalon Hybrid: 55.2 MPG
Toyota Camry Hybrid LE: 57.4 MPG
Honda Insight (CVT): 58.8 MPG
Toyota Prius v: 58.8 MPG
Honda Insight (selectable ratio CVT): 58.9 MPG
Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid: 60.8 MPG
Honda Civic Hybrid: 63.1 MPG
Ford Fusion Hybrid: 66.1 MPG
Lincoln MKZ Hybrid: 66.1 MPG (exactly the same results everywhere but the sticker MPG as the Fusion - something screwy is going on here, and the sticker MPG, even unrounded, is exactly 45 on the MKZ)
Ford C-Max Hybrid: 66.1 MPG (exactly the same results everywhere as the Fusion)
Lexus CT 200h: 70.6 MPG
Toyota Prius: 70.6 MPG (exactly the same results everywhere but the sticker MPG as the CT 200h - the CT 200h has much lower sticker MPG. Might be because of the higher speed tests, in this case, as the Prius has better aero)
Toyota Prius c: 70.8 MPG

Pickup trucks will need to change a lot to get better fuel economy, but it's certainly doable. Aero will be hard to do, but some can be done by switching to transverse FMF drivetrain layout. Further help here can be found by hybridizing, and using the hybrid system to power electric motors on the rear wheels to get AWD, which will also allow lowering the load floor (no more differential). The Power Split Device could be useful here, too, to keep the engine on full boil relatively efficiently.
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Old June 26th, 2013, 04:35   #11
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All of those gasser models (Fiat 500, Cruse ECO, Focus SFE, etc) are getting ~40 mpg highway rating. That's about what my Passat is rated at, and yet the reality is that Passat gets better than 45, even better than 50. If you really push the hypermiling, the TDIs really excel over the gasser counterparts. 55mpg is not hard to get in a Passat on the road, even with a full load. The gassers just can't match this.

So the question is, will there ever be a more realistic fuel economy number put on the TDIs? 30-42mpg is not real. I've never gotten less than 35mpg in the city, and have seen nearly 60mpg on the road, and without the higher price for the hybrid technology, or ever having to worry about batteries. Now that's a real competitor for gassers mentioned in that article... better than implied.

And think what this does for range, as well. All this and without any hybrid drivetrain complexity. I'd like to see an acknowledgement of this in these articles.
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Old June 26th, 2013, 06:48   #12
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Worth a watch...

http://www.wimp.com/combustionengine/
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Old July 3rd, 2013, 07:18   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dubStrom View Post
A 4x4 truck can get 30 mpg. Amarok does. I know it is not 35.5, but that is a fleet average, not individual model. I think a truck could easily get more if people's expectation for acceleration with a load were lower. People all over the world haul loads with much smaller engines than the V6. It is all a matter of perspective, and how impatient you are.
You can haul a load 85 mph or accelerate to 40mph in 3-4 seconds with a load if you have a v8, but that does not make it necessary.
My Jeep Liberty CRD gets 29MPG (with a tune) even with me driving at 70-75MPH (in the summer), Only 4x4 able to tow 5,000 and get close to 30MPG I've seen (340tq close to a v8).
I bet we see a lot more pickups with small diesels (dodge has one coming this fall) I'll be watching closely as the only reason I bought the Jeep was for the engine.
I also doubt we see many real 4x4 SUVs in the future, AWD crossovers will be as close as we get.
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Old July 3rd, 2013, 07:21   #14
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I like how a Ram 1500 is now a small pickup.

(And by "like", I really mean the exact opposite.)
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Old July 3rd, 2013, 10:58   #15
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The seven passenger rental van I had in Germany last month got 36 mpg (not imperial) with a seven speed DSG. That was with me flogging it through villages and going 160kph on the autobahn with it loaded with passengers and luggage. It was a VW caddy hi-top with the 1.9 TDI engine. It handled and accelerated virtually as well as my 06 Jetta. Braking felt way better. I figure we hauled 1000 Lbs around and I thoroughly enjoyed popping through the gears in manual mode. No compromise in ride for me.
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