Alternative fuel cars on california roads increases

Alternative Fuel Cars on California Roads Increases

In the auto industry, the month of April is being celebrated as the National Alternative Fuel Autos Month, and in observing that, automakers reported the number of alternative fuel vehicles in the state of California.

It is widely known that the mentioned state is one of the major frontrunners in the battle against global warming in the United States. The numbers of alternative fuel vehicles on California’s roads were reported to have increased in the year 2006 as compared to the number of alternative fuel vehicles back in 2005.

R.L Polk and Co. undertook the study to find out the number of alternative fuel vehicles on the state of California. The research firm reported that in 2006, the number of alternative fuel automobiles in the state reaches 837,743. That number includes different alternative fuel vehicle types which includes hybrid electric cars, E-85 fuel vehicles, and vehicles running on bio-diesel. The said number shows a 17 percent increase in the number of alternative fuel vehicles in the state compared to 2005 figures. R.L Polk and Co. also reported that California has the second most number of alternative fuel vehicles on its roads for the mentioned periods.

The research firm also reported that the combined sales of auto manufacturers of alternative fuel autos reached 1.5 million for the year of 2006. That number exceeds the expected sales figures set by automakers in the country by 50 percent. That marks the most number of alternative fuel vehicles sold in the United States in a year. That also brings the total number of alternative fuel automobiles in the country to 10.5 million through 2006.

And considering the increasing demand for such vehicles and the sales figures for companies producing those vehicles, it seems that that number would continually increase over the next few years.

Dave McCurdy, the president of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, has this to say about the current trend concerning the sale of alternative fuel vehicles: “I am pleased to see that the sales of Alternative Fuel Autos are rising. The auto industry is a dynamic high-tech sector and manufacturers are committed to selling vehicles that can run on something other than just gasoline. Consumers are taking notice.” He also added that: “Automakers believe that consumer awareness, fueling infrastructure and government incentives all work together to help put more Alternative Fuel Autos on the roads.”

The increased number of alternative fuel vehicles on the country’s roads is the direct effect of the wide range of alternative fuel vehicles being offered by car manufacturers. This year, there are 60 models of alternative fuel vehicles available in the U.S. auto market. In 2000, the number of models offered to the public is only 12. The number of gas-electric hybrid, bio-ethanol, and bio-diesel engined vehicles has shown an increased number and more are on the way with car manufacturers move to address the demand for such fuel efficient vehicles.

Aside from these technologies, car manufacturers are also developing newer technologies which allow conventional gasoline engines to consume less fuel. In the case of Nissan, they are pushing the use of the continuously variable transmission to reduce fuel consumption. Deactivation of one or more cylinders of a vehicle’s engine while cruising is also another technology and technique which is currently being used by car manufacturers to reduce fuel consumption of their vehicles.

Regenerative braking is also another technology used by auto makers and this technology is complemented well with efficient brake components such as those found at EBC active brakes direct.

Although there are a huge number of alternative fuel vehicles on the country’s roads, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done. A concrete example of this is the practicality of vehicles which can run on E85 fuel. The use of bio-ethanol reduces the amount of greenhouse gases and also reduces the dependency of the country on foreign oil.

The most pressing problem though is the availability of bio-ethanol refilling stations. This means that there are a lot of alternative fuel vehicles which still runs on gasoline instead of the more environment friendly bio-ethanol.

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