Mercedes' Green Thumb
Stop-start technology slated for entire lineup
LONDON - After watching rival BMW dominate the headlines at the Geneva auto show in March with the introduction of carbon dioxide-reducing stop-start versions of the 1 series, Mercedes-Benz will fight back.
"We will catch up and get ahead," said Thomas Weber, head of r&d at Mercedes parent DaimlerChrysler.
Mercedes-Benz will launch stop-start technology across its entire lineup, beginning with the A- and B-class entry-premium cars in September, Weber said at a press event here.
All carmakers are looking for ways to reduce CO2 because the European Commission plans to introduce legislation that cuts average European fleet emissions of CO2 to 130 grams per kilometer for new cars by 2012 from about 160 now.
Stop-start systems work by shutting down the engine when the car stops. The engine restarts when the driver lifts his foot off the brake or pushes the accelerator.
Sources say Valeo will supply its belt-driven stop-start system in the A- and B-class models.
Weber said Mercedes would use a different solution for its larger, rear-drive models. A Mercedes official who did not wish to be named said that for these models, the company will use a so-called ISG system - in effect, a flywheel that functions as both starter and generator. Such a system also can reduce engine vibration and provide fill-in torque to smooth out gearshifts. The official would not reveal the supplier of the system.