Ford is upping its ante on fuel-efficiency by dramatically increasing the application of Auto Stop-Start technology to its new model lineup in the coming years. Fully 70% of its North American vehicle lineup will be available with Auto Stop-Start by 2017, the company says.
Auto Stop-Start is a relatively low-cost technology that provides a seamless way to increase fuel efficiency by as much as 10% in city driving.
The system seamlessly shuts off the engine when a vehicle stops, thus saving fuel, while an advanced battery system continues to power the vehicle's other systems and accessories in place of the engine. The engine restarts instantly when the driver begins to release the brake pedal.
“Simply put, Auto Stop-Start helps customers use less fuel,” says Bob Fascetti, vice-president, Ford global powertrain. “By making Auto Stop-Start available on more vehicles, we are working to be part of the solution to environmental sustainability with effective, fuel-saving technologies.”
Of course, actual fuel savings vary and depend on driving patterns, with average overall improvement s in the range of 3.5%, according to Ford. But those who drive in heavy traffic – such as congested urban environments – could see fuel efficiency increase by as much as 10%, the company says. It also provides a meaningful reduction to CO2 emissions that are avoided during long idle times.
Ford has years of experience with Auto Stop-Start via its electrified powertrain hybrid and plug-in hybrid offerings, and the feature is popular on a host of Ford models in Europe.
In North America, Auto Stop-Start is currently available on the 2014 Ford Fusion with 1.5-litre EcoBoost engine.