A Green Vehicle Technology Perspective on the Detroit Auto Show

2011 North American International Auto Show

Major auto­mo­tive sup­pli­ers are dis­play­ing fuel econ­omy tech­nol­ogy to assist automak­ers make the steep climb into fed­eral fuel econ­omy stan­dards and to reach con­sumers with grow­ing inter­est in fuel effi­cient vehi­cles. Sup­pli­ers such as South­field, Mich.-based Denso Inter­na­tional Amer­ica Inc., Ply­mouth, Mich.-based ZF North Amer­ica Inc., Milwaukee-based John­son Con­trols Inc., and Fort Mill, S.C.-based Scha­ef­fler Group USA Inc. are dis­play­ing sev­eral fuel-saving tech­nol­ogy sys­tems at the Cobo Cen­ter. Scha­ef­fler Group has been work­ing closely with Ford Motor Co., and is dis­play­ing a Ford Escape loaded with nine tech­nolo­gies to save gaso­line. These include a stop-start sys­tem, an all-wheel drive dis­con­nect sys­tem, and friction-reduction technologies.

One sig­nif­i­cant announce­ment came from Nis­san – it will be drop­ping the price of its Leaf battery-electric vehi­cle. The price will drop by 18%, or about $6,000, now start­ing at $28,800 for the S trim level. With the fed­eral tax credit at $7,500 and with var­i­ous state incen­tives, some con­sumers will be able to pur­chase the Leaf for as lit­tle as $18,000.