Roger Schreffler


Roger keeps tabs on the Japanese auto industry, specializing in coverage of manufacturing and advanced technology.

European LV Emissions Down, Fuel Efficiency Up
BMW, Mercedes and Audi all achieved 45 mpg in 2014, while Peugeot and Renault improved to 53.5 mpg and 52 mpg, respectively. BMW showed the biggest improvement over 2004, 34%, followed by Mercedes (32%) and Peugeot (28%).
Honda Powertrain Overhaul Targets Weight, Emissions
“China will adopt some of the world’s most stringent regulations in terms of fuel economy,” Honda automotive R&D chief Keiji Ohtsu says. “In 2025, we don’t expect to be able to sell conventional internal-combustion engines, meaning we will be selling mostly hybrids including plug-in types.”
Shades of Green in Spotlight at Tokyo Auto Show
The new Honda FCX Clarity has a range of 435 miles and takes three minutes to refuel, while Nissan’s new Leaf can run 175 miles on a single charge, up from the current model’s 142.
Toyota Sees Even Split Between Prius Batteries
Production will be divided evenly between Li-ion and the NiMH batteries Toyota has used nearly exclusively until now. Sales of cars with the two battery types will be further split 50-50 in North America and Japan.
Japan Steps Up Engine Downsizing Pace
Toyota, Honda, Nissan, plus Japan’s smaller automakers, have a number of new smaller-displacement yet powerful engines on the way.
Suzuki Sets Path for Growth in Europe, Asia
Globally, Suzuki will introduce 20 new models over the next five years including five 0.66L minis, six A-segment cars and nine B- and C-segment models including SUVs.
Japan to Keep Focus on Fuel Economy, Safety Tech, JAMA Chief Says
The auto industry will need to substantially increase the market share for advanced-technology vehicles in Japan, if it hopes to achieve future carbon-dioxide emissions targets, Honda’s Fumihiko Ike says.
Tokyo Auto Show Spotlight Dimmed Only Slightly
The Tokyo show has become less significant than those in Frankfurt, Geneva, Detroit and Los Angeles. Still, as the home market for Toyota, Nissan and Honda, it affords them a chance to bedazzle with their latest technologies.
PSA, Toyota Lead Way as European Cars Get Cleaner
A report by Transport & Environment says the European auto industry as a whole reduced CO2 emissions 2.6% to 123.4 g/km last year from 126.8 g/km in 2013.
Japanese, Korean First-Half Hybrid Sales in Reverse 
Still ranking as the world’s leaders, Japanese and Korean brands registered a 10% year-on-year decline in hybrid sales between January and June to an estimated 805,000 units. Hybrid production in Japan alone declined 29% to 550,181 units.
Mitsubishi Puts Aging Plant on Tech’s Cutting Edge
The Okazaki plant produces Outlander, Outlander plug-in hybrid and RVR midsized CUVs . The RVR is sold in Europe as the ASX. More than 90% of output is exported, with Europe accounting for more than half of the total.
More Vehicles, Including Diesel-Powered, on Japanese Roads
An estimated 33.7% of cars in operation in 2014, or 20.2 million, had displacements of 0.66L.
Japanese Automakers Report Record 6-Month Output 
Production gains by Mazda, Suzuki and Subaru maker Fuji offset declines by Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Mitsubishi.
Indonesia 6-Month Sales Down; Philippines, Taiwan Up 
Softening domestic demand in Indonesia prompted the Association of Indonesia Automotive Industries to lower its 2015 sales forecast to 1.1 million units from 1.2 million earlier in the year.
Japanese Automakers’ Output Hits 6-Year High in 2014 
An industry group says automakers exported 1,662,160 units to North America, down 11.9%, while exports to Europe and Asia rose 4.9% and 3.7%, respectively.

Jan 18, 2018

2018 Wards 10 Best Engines Editorial Roundtable Part 2

WardsAuto editors discuss some of the 22 nominees that did not make the cut in this year's Wards 10 Best Engines competition....More


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