The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Lifestyle

July 5, 2013

5 new features that could be on your next car

(Continued)

— Adaptive headlights:

Headlights don't have to be round any more to accommodate bulbs, so designers have more flexibility on where to put lights. And LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, are letting automakers cram more brightness into smaller spaces. Audi, Mercedes, Acura, Mazda and others have so-called adaptive headlights that swivel in the direction the car is going to help drivers see around corners as they turn. And many cars now have high-beam lights that sense oncoming traffic and dim automatically. The Ford Fusion and other mainstream cars have them, and drivers can buy after-market kits to add automatic high beams to cars without them.

— Stop-start:

By 2025, new cars and trucks sold in the U.S. will have to average 54.5 miles per gallon of gasoline, up from the current 30.8 mpg. One feature will almost be a must-have: A "stop-start" device that shuts off the engine at a stop light and automatically turns it on when the driver releases the brake.

Alex Molinaroli, a vice president with Johnson Controls Inc., which makes batteries that power the systems, estimates they raise gas mileage by a minimum of 5 percent.

Stop-start first surfaced in Europe, where gas prices are far higher. Now, nearly all gas-electric hybrid vehicles have it, as do some cars and trucks with conventional engines. The BMW 3-Series has a simple system, helping the four-cylinder version with an automatic transmission get 28 mpg in combined city and highway driving. A high-mileage version of Chrysler's Ram pickup also has it, boosting combined mileage by 1 mpg to 21.

Currently, 5 percent of new U.S. cars have the systems as standard or optional equipment, up from just 0.5 percent two years ago, according to the Edmunds.com automotive website. Johnson Controls predicts that to rise to 40 to 45 percent by 2016.

Text Only
Lifestyle
Photos


Poll

Which foreign crisis is the biggest threat to the security of the United States?

Russia-Ukraine
Israel-Palestine
Iraq
None of the above
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee