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 Automotive & Automobile

 

 Automotive & Automobile Technical Schools Keeping Up With the Times

Recent and proposed changes in emissions laws as they pertain to newly manufactured automobiles has prompted the auto industry to rethink it's focus on fuel economy. Though manufacturers have reacted to legislative changes by developing and promoting hybrid and fuel cell powered vehicles, very few car owners have made the switch. The expense of research and development in addition to revised manufacturing platforms has put environmentally friendly vehicles out of reach for the average consumer. Still, the writing is on the wall in terms of the  Automotive & Automobile industries future regarding reduced emissions.

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Recent and proposed changes in emissions laws as they pertain to newly manufactured automobiles has prompted the auto industry to rethink it's focus on fuel economy. Though manufacturers have reacted to legislative changes by developing and promoting hybrid and fuel cell powered vehicles, very few car owners have made the switch. The expense of research and development in addition to revised manufacturing platforms has put environmentally friendly vehicles out of reach for the average consumer. Still, the writing is on the wall in terms of the  Automotive & Automobile industries future regarding reduced emissions.

Despite the fact the low emission vehicles make up less than one percent of the nations overall vehicle ownership, many in the industry are preparing for eventuality of a market dominated by hybrid cars and trucks.  Automotive & Automobile technical schools, the institutions by which the mechanically inclined learn the skill sets and knowledge necessary for auto and diesel repair work, are already gearing up for the changes. In addition to teaching the intricacies of gas and diesel powered vehicles, several  Automotive & Automobile technician schools are incorporating coursework that pertains to the specialized fuel systems and engine components of hybrid vehicles. Some are even offering entire programs based on the vehicles that have already been developed and are currently available on the market.

As with the information technology sector, educational institutions that offer  Automotive & Automobile related programs must constantly keep abreast of trends in the industry as sweeping changes can happen seemingly overnight.  Automotive & Automobile technical schools are one of the few institutional entities that cater to modern technology and must keep their course offerings relative to the marketplace in order to adequately prepare graduates for what they will experience when employed. Unlike educational providers that offer IT curriculum, however,  Automotive & Automobile technical schools are able to stay ahead of market driven changes as the average price of new vehicl
es keeps consumer spending relative to the age of technological advances.

 

Economical And Affordable Green  Automotive & Automobile Technology

Although hybrid cars are the rage, and there are all kinds of alternative energy sources on the horizon, hybrids are cost prohibitive, usually ranging $3000 to $7000 more than the gas only version of that model. However, instead of changing fuel sources, some  Automotive & Automobile companies have been using a new type of transmission to improve fuel economy, lower emissions, and actually make vehicles faster without adding to the sticker price.

These companies are using a continuously...

Green  Automotive & Automobile Technology, green ideas

Although hybrid cars are the rage, and there are all kinds of alternative energy sources on the horizon, hybrids are cost prohibitive, usually ranging $3000 to $7000 more than the gas only version of that model. However, instead of changing fuel sources, some  Automotive & Automobile companies have been using a new type of transmission to improve fuel economy, lower emissions, and actually make vehicles faster without adding to the sticker price.

These companies are using a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and instead of having set gear ratios (or gears), it constantly varies the gear ratios, as well as engine performance, so that they both operate at their most efficient level in any driving scenario.

Because these key components of the power train are at their peak performance at all times, fuel economy is improved by 6-8% and carbon dioxide emissions are reduced by 10%.

Although these figures may not sound impressive, the gas savings increase the highway mileage of most vehicles by 4 to 6 mpg, which adds up pretty quickly at $3/gallon.

The CVT’s potential for reducing emissions is also significant. As Carlos Ghosn, CEO of Nissan Motor Company, said, achieving his goal of selling one million CVT equipped vehicles by the end of 2007 will have “the same effect in terms of reducing CO2 emissions as selling 200,000 hybrid electric vehicles.”

Since there is no shifting between fixed gears, there is no ‘shift shock’ or jerking sensation, which makes them exceptionally smooth to drive. CVTs also do well in hilly terrain since there is no ‘gear hunting’ or bogging down on a hill, followed by a loud, violent downshift, which also contributes to its superior acceleration.

You may be wondering why this isn’t in every car if it is so great. Well, every year, more vehicles in the American market add CVTs as an option, though it has happened quietly, as many people are leery of new technology, especially in cars.

The CVT is actually quite old although it is new to American automobiles. The concept was developed by Leonardo DaVinci and was first patented in the late 1800’s for industrial applications. The CVT has been used in Asian and European vehicles since the 1950’s, but until recently CVTs could not handle the power that American drivers demand from their cars. However, CVTs have seen widespread use in snowmobiles and Formula 500 racing where they have a reputation for extending engine life and being much easier to rebuild than either a manual or automatic step transmission.

So where can you test drive a CVT-equipped vehicle? Well you can go to dealerships selling Ford, Dodge, Audi, or Mini-Cooper, to name a few, although a Nissan dealership may be the best place to go. In order to hit their goal of one million CVT sales in 2007, they have installed CVTs in nearly every sedan in their lineup, including the best selling Altima, Maxima, and economical Versa (as a side note, Nissan has also made side curtain airbags standard in these models, improving safety and reducing insurance costs).

Although you may not have the budget for a hybrid vehicle or cannot wait for that miracle fuel to hit the market, you can take it easy on the environment, as well as your checkbook, by checking out a few cars with a CVT.

 

Environmentally Sound  Automotive & Automobile Air Filters

The wonders of modern  Automotive & Automobile technology have produced catalytic converters, performance chips, cold air intakes, and now: environmentally responsible air filters for your vehicle. Read on for all the benefits of this nifty and cost effective aftermarket part.

K&N intake, K&N FIPK, performance air filters, reusable air filters, performance chips, air intake

When I explain to someone that there are several lines of vehicle air filters available that are environmentally sound I usually receive a quizzical look back from that person. For some motorists the idea of environmentally compatible  Automotive & Automobile parts is a foreign concept to them. Yet, when you think about it many parts that come standard on just about any vehicle qualifies for that title. A catalytic converter is one part that everyone knows about, even if they don't understand exactly how one works. So, exactly what is an environmentally sound air filter? Let’s take a closer look for all the details.

As you probably know the air filter that comes with your car is made predominately of paper with plastic molding holding the filter together. If you change the air filter at recommended intervals – once a year is common – you can easily go through 3, 5, or even 10 or more air filters depending on how long you keep your car as well as how many miles you put on your car. All of these air filters end up in your trash and then go straight to the dump. The paper in the filter will probably disintegrate quickly, but the plastic sits in place perhaps for thousands of years.

If this sort of thing disturbs you then take heart. Thanks to race car technology, manufacturers have developed reusable air filters for many production vehicles. If you purchase one for your vehicle it likely will be the last one you ever need. How is that? Because a reusable air filter can be cleaned and put back in your car over and over again. In fact, quality reusable air filters are designed to outlast your car with many guaranteed to last 500,000 miles or more, even up to one million miles!

A reusable air filter costs more, with prices running approximately 2-4 times the price of a standard air filter. If you keep your car for any length of time you will get that money back, but if do not you are still helping to show environmental responsibility by keeping our landfills free of unnecessary throw away parts.

Two additional benefits of a reusable air filter -- the type that K&N and other top manufacturers produce -- is that it will give your vehicle a boost in horsepower as your engine will run more efficiently. Furthermore, a more efficient engine burns less fuel so your fuel economy goes up too.

So, what is there not to like about a reusable air filter? In reality, not much! By installing a reusable [or performance] air filter you help the environment, realize a noticeable gain in horsepower, and you burn less fuel. A true win-win-win proposition, don’t you agree?




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