The duel of the most fuel-efficient cars, which Greenpeace so persistently insisted on, took place.


So, in Hamburg there was a contest between the brainchild of Greenpeace eco-car Renault Twingo Smile (see ЗР, 1997, No. 3) and the equally beloved "child" Ferdinand Piech "three-liter" Volkswagen-Lupo "(ЗР, 1999, No. 5). Other models took part in the test, organized by the Autobild magazine, but everyone's attention was immediately drawn to the undisputed leaders. Racers (it would be more accurate to call them economists) overcame a 220-km route in the vicinity of the city, which ran along the autobahns (60 km), suburban highways (100 km) and Hamburg streets (60 km). Fuel consumption was accurately measured in the presence of a commission of journalists and counted for 100 km. The "wolf" broke out, which cost two and a half liters of diesel fuel in a forty-strong economical mode. Immediately after him, "Smile" came, who burned 2.8 liters of gasoline. By the amount of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere, both divided the first place.

We put the racing terms in quotes because the goal of the pilots was not to get to the finish line faster, but to do with less fuel. Therefore, we drove mainly in tightness, switched gears up early, squeezing the clutch when coasting, and at “Lupo” the motor turned off at each traffic light. So the pace of the "race" almost slowed down the rest of the movement.

The selection of other participants in the "marathon" was very extraordinary. Among the little ones, for example, Mercedes-Benz-E270CDI Elegance. A rather heavy car was enough, however, only 4.2 liters of diesel fuel, which brought fifth place. But if you attribute this expense to the mass of the car, it turns out that the transportation of one kilogram required only 0.0025 liters of fuel compared to 0.0028 liters from the champion! That's what a speed of no more than 80 km / h, a six-speed gearbox and a high-torque diesel engine that worked in the range of 1000-1500 rpm.

Well, in order to make progress in the automotive industry more visible, the carbureted "Opel Cadet", well preserved for … 36 years, was included in the composition of the participants: 40 l. S., 993 cmz and four gears in a box. As expected, the patriarch was the last to finish, having spent 7.2 liters of “92nd, ” incidentally, gasoline.

Greenpeace spokesman Wolfgang Lobek congratulated Piech on the successful work of his designers, but recalled that it was Smile who had been setting the benchmark for three years now and spurring research. Mr. Lobek did not stint a fly in the ointment: “We hope that Volkswagen will not be limited to a too expensive and carcinogenic diesel car, which is also unsuitable for mass production due to sophisticated technology. And while the average fuel consumption of all the company's models is about 8 liters, Lupo remains only a kind of ecological indulgence. ”

The Smile technique with its small-displacement (358 cm3), but powerful (55 hp) engine can be transferred, according to Greenpeace, to any automobiles, from small cars to limousines, and promises to reduce appetite by half when .. . preservation of power characteristics! And this has long been proved by the Smile built on the basis of Renault Twingo, which has traveled over 60, 000 km and cost 2.2 l of gasoline per 100 km on good days.

How did Swiss designers manage to remove so much power from the “motorcycle” engine capacity? The old tried-and-true method is to pressurize the cylinders. However, since the exhaust gas flow of such a motor is too weak to spin a turbine of acceptable size, the well-known but still exotic “wave exchanger” “Comprex” was used (for details about it, see ЗР, 1997, No. 8). Now the engine runs almost all the time with the throttle open, which dramatically reduced losses on air intake, and when increased power and torque are needed, the addition of a combustible mixture provides boost.