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The Interest in Fuel Economy Today
People are waking up to the benefits of using less gas. The days where people seemed almost proud of using lots of gas are finally over, and now people are looking for alternatives solutions. Buying a car that can't even get around the block without using a lot of gas no longer seems cool in an era of troubled economic times. Problems in the economy can lead to a greater interest in fuel economy, which is a pattern that has repeated earlier in history.

This is a trend that is here to stay, thanks to the strong sense of environmental awareness that a lot of people have today. People want to save money on gas, and they also want to reduce their personal environmental impact. Buying cars that get better mileage for whatever reason is one of the best ways of doing that. While people are going to have an impact on the environment in other ways, almost nothing contributes to global climate change more than the burning of fossil fuels. For most people, that means driving a car. There's never been a better time for fuel economy than now.

Overall Vehicle Design
There are lots of different ways to achieve better fuel economy from a technical perspective. Some of the solutions involve making the vehicles themselves more efficient and better able to manage the fuel that they do use, thus using more despite performing the exact same operation. This is the sort of innovation that more or less represents the low-hanging fruit, since it involves changing the design of a vehicle and not the actual fuel that it uses.

The cars of today already look a lot different from the cars of twenty years ago, and this is partly to make them more energy efficient. People are certainly never going to see designs like those of the 1960's Cadillac vehicles again. Cars are designed to be smaller, lighter, and more streamlined today so they're going to manage to drive on less fuel. These cars are often safer as well, and many people like the style.

Engine Technologies
Getting the engine to use fuel more efficiently can make all the difference. Turbochargers are popular today, and these can lead to an energy increase of up to eight percent or so. They can make the engine much more powerful. As such, it is possible to design a vehicle with a smaller engine that still performs as well as a larger engine using alternative soulutions. Gasoline direct injection is also popular today, allowing drivers to save around one percent in energy and giving a vehicle a high performance on comparatively less fuel. Cylinder deactivation allows people to avoid using cylinders unnecessarily and wasting energy in the process, allowing people to save up to five percent on energy. Lift technologies and valve timing can actually help people control the flow of fuel, leading to energy savings of three to four percent.

Hybrid Technology
There's a reason why when people talk about alternative solutions to current cars, they are almost always going to bring up hybrid technology before anything else. Hybrids that use regenerative braking, batteries and electric motors, and stop-start can be up to thirty-five percent more efficient. However, even mild hybrids can offer energy savings of around six percent. Stop-start systems allow people to save on the fuel that they would have used during idling, which can give them an energy efficiency increase of two percent or so.

Transmission Technology Dual-clutch transmissions allow people to save up to four percent when it comes to energy, just by being more efficient than the transmission systems that they have replaced. Additional gears can help cars reach speeds that are that much more efficient, leading to an efficiency increase of up to four percent. Cars can also accelerate much more easily as a result of continuously variable transmissions, which can lead to an efficiency increase of around four percent.

Fuel Economy Today Cars need to be modified in many different ways in order to become more efficient. Most of the fuel economy changes are subtle, but they make a huge difference in the long run and all of them add up very quickly.

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