IN THE WORLD OF MOTORS
The column materials were prepared by Mikhail GZOVSKIY, Alexey VOROBYEV-OBUKHOV
Competitors in the oversaturated automotive market are vigilantly watching each other so as not to miss the suddenly opened new niche. Marketing specialists, of course, noted the rapid growth in sales of the so-called micro-vans - very small city cars for four passengers. They are distinguished by a flexible transformable interior, a comfortable vertical landing, indispensable five doors and some other pleasant little things. With a length of no more than 3.5 m, micro-vans fit perfectly into the dense city stream and make it easier for drivers to find a parking place. It is no coincidence that one of the first representatives of this class (albeit not entirely “vanous”) - “Toyota Yaris” - became the European car of 2000 and acquired in the Verso version a completely finished look of a micro-van. Following rushed and other manufacturers. We have already introduced the Suzuki-Wagon R + (ЗР, 2000, No. 5), and soon in Europe there will be almost its double “Opel Aguila”. The similarity, of course, is not accidental - both cars were developed by one team under the roof of General Motors. (This way it is possible to reduce the cost of developing each individual model.)
Let us therefore dwell on the differences between the "Japanese" and the "German", especially since they are very interesting. Opel got super-economical and environmentally friendly ECOTEC engines with a volume of 1.0 and 1.2 liters, with the first being a three-cylinder. Although it is inferior to the Japanese 7 liters. s., but a little more slow and develops a torque of 4 N.m more, and this is valuable in urban conditions. Four cylinder
16-valve unit, despite the "lack" of a hundred "cubes" of working volume, develops almost 75 liters. with. - as much as the Suzuki accelerates the car also to 155 km / h, but by 0.7 s slower.
Among other technical innovations - a ceramic-based control processor, which was able to place … directly on a hot and vibrating motor, dramatically reducing the number of connecting cables and connectors - the main sources of malfunctions. The ignition system, including the spark plugs, has finally become completely maintenance free, and the gas pedal has lost mechanical connection with the throttle - now all the driver’s commands are wired.
The power steering (it seems, why is he such a baby?) In Agile is also electric and consumes energy only when turning, which gives fuel savings of 2 to 5% compared to hydraulics. But this is not the main thing: the electronics quickly changes the “assistance factor” of the amplifier, providing optimal control both on the freeway and in the parking lot.