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DUMBED-DOWN HYBRID TECHNOLOGY?

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Published on Sun, Mar 21, 2010

By: The LACar Editorial Staff

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European BMWs with microhybrid technology DUMBED-DOWN HYBRID TECHNOLOGY? I'm not sure what to think about so-called "micro-hybrids". By adding a few features found on traditional hybrids, but not the whole powertrain, conventional cars can see an increase of 3-8 percent in fuel. The so-called micro-hybrids incorporate features such as the start-stop technology found in most hybrids, which shuts down the engine when a car is at a stoplight and then restarts it when the driver lifts his or her foot from the brake pedal. Several automakers are already using the technology in Europe -- including BMW, Mazda and Mercedes-Benz - but the micro-hybrids have yet to make it to U.S. shores. More MPG is nice, but what about cutting down more directly on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions as regular hybrids do? Maybe "faux hybrids" is a more descriptive name for this new trend. Allis Aaron Wolf Hybrid Owners of America

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