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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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By glitchc on 7/12/2007 1:56:21 AM , Rating: 2
It's amazing how people on DailyTech have passionate discussions about the minutae of diesel emission standards of personal automobiles in the States, Europe and elsewhere, yet no one has brought up fuel consumption and emissions standards for tractor trailers.

North America transports a far larger percentage of its freight via tractor-trailers, compared to the EU and other nations in the world, which favour smaller trucks over the 18-wheelers. Until recently, emissions standards on tractor-trailers in North America have been anything but lax, and fuel economy is a non-existent metric. The cost of fuel is, in fact, passed on to the consumer in the form of increased prices. They are the largest perpetrators of smog in our major cities, and worst contributors when idling. Over 150,000 trucks cross the Canada-US border *daily*.

I worked at a gas station (poor student in Canada) for a while, after which I upgraded to a supervisor's position at a truck stop. The amount of diesel consumed everyday by tractor-trailers compared to gasoline by automobiles, is staggering. The amount of engine oil bought on a daily basis is also rather shocking. Contrary to popular belief, diesel is a popular resource in North America. It's just not popular in the personal automobile segment. Furthermore, once the price of diesel goes up, it hardly ever comes down. When it does, it drops by a couple of cents, but invariably in a week or two, jumps up by ten more.

People may feel that this is comparing apples to oranges, but when one is trying to judge the viability of biofuel, ethanol, or other alternatives to gasoline, it would be prudent to consider the impact such choices have on the largest consumer of fuel: the trucking industry.

Just my two cents.

Stats/figures borrowed from this link:

RE: Fascinating
By glitchc on 7/12/2007 1:58:50 AM , Rating: 2
"anything but lax" to "anything but tight "...

"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher

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