By 2015, no new car made by Mazda will stand around idle. By this year, Mazda plans to install its idling stop function on all of its new automobiles, says today’s Nikkei [sub]. Some domestic and European Mazda already have this feature. In a few years, it will be universal, including North America, where current EPA regulations discourage idle stop.
Minivehicles, which Mazda sources from Suzuki, will remain an exception.
This will not be your father’s idling stop. It’s an idling stop with brains. (Not that I’m saying your father has no brains…) The Mazda idling stop has sensors in the engine that specify which cylinder will get the first spark after the vehicle had stopped. By picking the piston with the optimal position in the cylinder, Mazda shortened the time to restart to a third of a second.
Mazda will introduce a new direct fuel injection engine in 2011. The new engine will improve fuel economy by 15 percent in gasoline models and by 20 percent in diesel models. With idle stop added, Mazdas will be even more fuel frugal. Mazda aims to improve average fuel economy by 30 percent come 2015. Their opposition is hybrid cars. Mazda plans to beat them with an improved ICE, in fuel consumption and especially in driveability.