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Honda Odyssey

Honda Pilot

Honda Ridgeline
Honda to introduce a new 3.5 liter V6 diesel by 2010

While many domestic and foreign automakers are looking to hybrid technology to improve fuel efficiency across their auto lines, Honda is looking towards the tried and true: diesel engines.

It was reported last month that the next generation Honda Accord would forgo its slow-selling and poor-performing Accord Hybrid with a diesel variant. The oil-burning Honda Accord will feature a 2.2 liter i-CTDi Tier 2 Bin 5 diesel engine along with an ammonia-filled catalytic converter to reduce NOx emissions.

Honda is also poised to make a new 3.5 liter V6 diesel engine available for its larger vehicles including the Odyssey minivan, Pilot mid-sized SUV and the Ridgeline mid-sized pickup truck. The new Tier 2 Bin 5 diesel will first be available in 2010 according to the Japanese Nikkei newspaper.

The engine is said to be 30 percent more fuel efficient than Honda's current 3.5 liter V6 gasoline engine (rated at 17/24, 15/20 and 15/20 respectively in the Odyssey, Pilot and Ridgeline based on 2008 EPA estimates). The new motor is also said to produce 20 percent less carbon dioxide as the 3.5 liter V6 gasoline engine.

Honda's new diesels likely won't come under as much scrutiny for failure to achieve EPA estimates as has been the case with hybrids. Honda knows this first-hand as it recently became the target of a class-action lawsuit regarding poor fuel economy on the Civic Hybrid.



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RE: It amuses me
By mongrelchild on 7/11/2007 1:56:46 PM , Rating: 3
"And if you think a diesel engine is monumentally more expensive to build, then you don't understand the nature of how they work."

I'm an ME, so i have a better than average understanding of the diesel ignition cycle and the associated componentry stresses. The fact is that the engines are built tougher with more expensive grades of iron/steel and to tighter tolerance. The injection system and associated componentry is also more complex. They cost more as a result.

Efficiency is not a big issue, as most diesel designs are very efficient under steady-state loads. Where the advantage falls apart is under transient conditions where efficiency is obliterated.... Though this is getting better as the control system becomes more sophisticated and precise.

A gas motor in most applications is cheap and relatively easy to get working efficiently and with good drivability. And the powerband is much wider and arguably more useful. This is why they are so widespread. Also, forced induction for small displacement motors is a luxury for gas motors.To get acceptable (by north ameriacn standards) output and emissions out of a small diesel, it's basically a requirement.


RE: It amuses me
By Andrwken on 7/11/2007 2:19:33 PM , Rating: 2
I'll agree with you totally on the high compression fuel delivery systems used nowadays. That does come at a cost. I also agree on the forced induction systems necessary for output. But, having spent 7 years working for a ductile iron foundry can assure you that mettalurgy cost and the materials needed to increase the strength of components is really a null issue. It is a very minimal cost to increase the amounts of copper used to increase the hardness of engine components(yes copper actually hardens cast iron when mixed), its more in finding the right mix initially, and not a long term expense. But just look at the active fuel management used in the gas engines, that is a complicated computer controlled valve body added into the manifold assembly that shuts down the oil to the hydraulic lifters and therefore shutting down cylinders. This kind of tech can add a significant cost to a motor except for the fact that it is mass produced and doesn't leverage a high dollar option due to large volume. if the diesels were sold in higher volume, I don't believe they would have the high price tags they do either. But, I suppose they can always charge a premium for high mileage motors now too ;)


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