Stop Start Engine Technology – Fad or the real-deal?

I have read a number of articles that mention that emergence of stop-start engine technology. As the name suggests, this technology automatically switches off vehicle engines during idling , for example, when stopped at red traffic lights. The engine is automatically switched back on when the brake (or accelerator) pedal is applied.

The main advantage of this technology includes making traffic congested cities a lot quieter, boosting fuel efficiency and the reduction of exhaust pipe emissions. These are very noteworthy advantages, especially with today\’s focus on eco-friendly cars. However, inevitably, there are also disadvantages.

Some of the more obvious questions are:

  • What is the additional strain on the car’s battery and starter motors?
  • What are the “real” fuel efficiency gains?
  • Long-term cost versus long-term savings?

You would think that manufacturers would have thought of this and made the battery and starter motors more robust.

As for the “real” fuel efficiency gains, a question that come up is how often and for how long does the car need to be stopped/idling before you gain noticeable fuel efficiency gains?

However, my real gripe with much of this new car technology is what is the real cost (parts and labour) of not only maintaining/servicing this new technology but also replacing it when age/wear and tear has got the better of it?

You will probably find that all of the fuel efficiency savings over the period will perhaps be more than wiped out by these costs that really aren’t mentioned at all by the manufacturers.

But only time will tell………


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