In an effort to help further boost its critical corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) numbers, Ford has announced that it will expand the fitment of its Auto Start-Stop technology throughout its entire North American vehicle lineup starting in 2012. Already used on the Ford Fusion Hybrid and Escape Hybrid models as well as a number of its European offerings including the ECOnetic models of the Ford Ka and Mondeo, Auto Start-Stop also is standard on the 2011 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid and will be part of the new 2012 Ford C-MAX package. Ford says that by automatically shutting down the engine while the vehicle is stationary the system can help bump overall fuel economy by an estimated four to 10 percent -- depending on the driver and vehicle -- while realizing significant cuts in CO2 emissions.
The automaker currently has over 244 patents on the Auto Start-Stop system, which it plans to showcase at the Detroit Auto Show next month. Ford says Auto Start-Stop is designed to work on conventional gasoline/diesel engines as well as their hybrid cousins and all types of manual, automatic and dual-clutch transmissions.
“Many of the same Ford engineers who designed the Auto Start-Stop system used on Ford and Lincoln hybrids are developing the Auto Start-Stop system for non-hybrid vehicles that will be sold around the globe,” noted Barb Samardzich, Ford vice president of powertrain engineering. “For the driver, Ford Auto Start-Stop provides extra fuel efficiency without inconvenience, as it works completely automatically. And, just like in our hybrid vehicles, the heater and air conditioner work as normal so drivers will not sacrifice comfort.”