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E-M:/ Eco-pedal saves fuel, money & soldiers - avoids pollution.



ecopedalbig.jpg

From http://www.environmentalleader.com/2008/08/05/nissan-unveils-eco-pedal/

Nissan has unveiled Eco Pedal this week. The company says the system can help drivers improve fuel efficiency by 5 to 10 percent.

The pedal is designed to inform drivers when they are using more fuel than required. Each time the driver steps on the accelerator a counter push-back control mechanism turns on if the system detects excess pressure. An indicator also tells the driver real-time fuel consumption levels.

Last year, Nissan introduced a fuel efficiency gauge to give drivers more information on how their driving style directly relates to fuel economy.

The Eco Pedal system, which is planned to commercialize during 2009, can be turned on and off depending on the driver's preference.

Earlier in the year, Nissan announced that it would increase production of its Altimas by 2,000, to about 17,000 monthly, and cut production of its sport-utility vehicles. Other efficient cars the company has plans for include a clean-diesel version of its popular Nissan Maxima in the US, and an electric car in the US and Japan in 2010.


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Looking at this from a bird's perspective...

Do we need gadgets to show us we can save money and avoid pollution by accelerating in a controlled manner?

Maybe not if we're in the choir, but the masses need help. Even in the choir, we'd be surprised how much more we can learn.

5-10% savings isn't a big deal when we really need 50%, but it's something.

According to Toyota "when hybrid drivers use their Hybrid Vehicle System Indicators, their driving habits change as the system provides feedback on efficiency."

The image above (if you can see it) is not from Toyota, it's from the Nissan Eco-Pedal.
No word yet on added cost, but it might be rolled into the standard price.

Efficiency is passive, conservation is active. Turning off a light is active, the CFL itself is passive. The Eco-Pedal is not efficiency, yet it's not purely user initiated conservation either. But it does fall into the behavior list of solutions even though it's not quite active, not quite passive. (perhaps it's passive-aggressive)

The Eco-pedal is more like an automated, yet interactive building energy management system that tracks usage and coordinates with utility planners and motivates active conservation measures or pre-programmed reductions via usage feedback, visual indicators, alarms, beeps and price lures that show up on the building manager's screen or the receptionist's or security guard's screen or any assigned employee who is part of a proactive "environmental committee" or is the first to arrive or last to leave at work. If you don't know there's a difference, you won't perpetuate the difference.

Will readers who work in the auto industry suggest this at work? Or we feel it's not our place or won't do any good to bring it up? You know, to keep from being fired - as if every automaker isn't looking for ways to lure buyers trying to save fuel.

Wouldn't it be ironic if this were invented in Farmington Hills where Nissan has an engineering center?

Mike Cohn