By Jim Taylor, Editor MACS ACtion Magazine
You know how it goes; you plan on spending an afternoon cleaning out the attic or basement or sorting through all the boxes in the garage. But you come across one item that grabs your attention. You open it up and hours later you and the kids are still playing Twister or Trivial Pursuit on the floor.
Some recent electronic housecleaning here turned up this page from an EPA report, buried deep inside other folders. The save date on the file is April, 2010 so it’s a little dusty but still revealing. I have no idea of the original or source document, but at the time saving it was a no-brainer—it’s a snapshot of industry averages across 34 years of light-vehicle sales.
Even remembering that these are statistical averages for the millions of cars and trucks sold each year, some of the trends are very interesting. Tailpipe emissions have dropped by roughly one-third, and fuel economy has increased by about 50 percent since 1975.
The 2009 fleet is 100 lbs heavier on average than 1975, but it brings at least another 100 horsepower along for the ride. Zero to 60 times are down by more than four seconds in spite of the additional weight.
Four seconds!—maybe the “good old days” never were.
Industry use of multi-valve and variable valve timing engines has skyrocketed, and the prevalence of turbocharging is increasing slowly. With new and very efficient automatic transmissions, it’s plain that manufacturers no longer see the value of a manual gearbox.
Hybrids didn’t exist in 1998, but had almost two percent of the market eleven model years later. But even with the continued sales popularity of trucks and SUVs, diesel propulsion still barely registers a blip.
Will these trends continue; can we judge the future from the past? What will be in the next column to the right when they fill it in for 2020?
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When having your mobile A/C system professionally serviced, insist on proper repair procedures and quality replacement parts. Insist on recovery and recycling so that refrigerant can be reused and not released into the atmosphere.
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The 32nd annual Mobile Air Conditioning Society (MACS) Worldwide Convention and Trade Show will take place January 18-20, 2012 at the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV.