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calicamper

Expedition Leader
I've also wondered why some of the high MPG diesels don't seem to make it to the US. A while back one of the soon to be released manufacturers (Elio motors, IIRC) had wanted to use a tiny diesel in their then-planned 180+ MPG hybrid. They had a perfect motor but California EPA wouldn't approve it (EPA bashing is in a different thread). The explanation on the manufacturer website at the time, and the reason they explained that we can't get some of those cool diesels here, is that California EPA has a particulates-per-gallon-burned standard for diesels. Europe, and everyone else, uses a particulates-per-mile-driven standard for diesels. Your 14 MPG F350 meets EPA because in that 14 miles it's clean enough to meet the standard. The 45 MPG import puts out a bit more particulate each 45 miles than the F350 does in 14 so it fails. The 45 mpg import is much cleaner per mile driven but that's not the standard used by California (and therefore the rest of the country). Makes little sense to me to have that standard, but I'm guessing the big three US pickup truck manufacturers and some oil companies work hard to keep it that way. Selling us giant diesel trucks and fuel for them is profitable.

I recall that CA and several other states share the same standards but yes I recall reading something along those lines also. Its sorta along the same lines as the business tax write offs for years you couldn't buy a fuel efficient passenger car for your business and write it off but you could purchase an F350 and write it off. LOL
 

big a

Adventurer
Everyone notice how many practical vehicles are not imported here? I don't think it's always EPA compliance issues. The manufacturers seem to want to load us up on fancy trucks and cars with endless options. Lots of profit in overly equipped vehicles but come on there's a huge market out there for simpler machines.

This is a good point! I'm a mechanical engineer and in my company our customers are demanding simpler machines. Time is money, so extended downtime for repairs is unacceptable. Today's hydraulic machines are so overly complicated it's ridiculous. I went to an equipment show a few months ago and every machine there was full of wires, solenoid valves, computers, triggers and switches galore! Not to mention a huge electrical cabinet. I have been tasked with designing an entirely new product line that is direct controlled with as few pilot controls as possible. The thing is, the profit margin is higher with simpler rigs, and we can sell them cheaper! We are not in the business of repair. While we do have field mechanics, that is not our business model. We want our customers to be able to work on their equipment. This is our sales tactic! They are cheaper to run and cheaper to maintain and much much quicker to repair!

Unfortunately, the big auto manufacturers bank on repair as well as sales. The more complicated they make the vehicle, the more you're forced to have them make the repairs. In fact, they are pushing for legislation to make it illegal to work on your own vehicles thereby forcing you to take your vehicle to the dealership.

http://news.boldride.com/2015/04/gm-wants-to-make-working-on-your-own-car-illegal/76702/

Silly as it sounds, it's prolly not a bad idea as computer driven controls now operate your entire vehicle with a ba'gillion sensors to boot. Btw, I realize this article is merely talking about the programming side of things, but consider the fact that vehicles are becoming more and more controlled by computers from engines/transmissions, to steering, suspension and even braking.

-Andy
 
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doug720

Expedition Leader
With the rapid changes in electronics, vehicles, computers, smart phones , home appliances, etc, repair parts are only available for shorter and shorter periods of time. Many times this is a result of the changes in manufacturing equipment and technology. Old equipment is replaced and the old style parts can no longer be made.

Ever try to buy an electronic part for a 5 year old product? Most times you cant. Now it's the same with with vehicles. ECU's. PCM's, FIC's, air bag controllers, etc for many 10 year old vehicles are no longer available. Sometimes reconditioned parts are available, but the results and reliability are questionable at best.

Even if the part is available, can the price be justified? ECU's and similar parts are $1000.00 plus - each, injectors are $800-1200.00 each, $300-600 sensors, etc.

Current vehicles are designed to be disposable. Don't repair...Replace. Planned obsolescence...Make um' cheap, sell um' high, buy a new one when it breaks!
 

RoyJ

Adventurer
Ever try to buy an electronic part for a 5 year old product? Most times you cant. Now it's the same with with vehicles. ECU's. PCM's, FIC's, air bag controllers, etc for many 10 year old vehicles are no longer available. Sometimes reconditioned parts are available, but the results and reliability are questionable at best.

And even if you can, who can perform the required programming in 20 - 30 yrs?

If the PCM on my 2014 Ram burns out in 2040, who will have a retro computer with retro OBD ports to attach it to my VIN and all the keyless / remote system?

My Detroit Diesel bus has just passed the 1/2 century mark, and I expected it to out-live my brand new truck!
 

Rockhounder

Explorer
Some off road guys I heard of have gotten so tired of all the extra sensor crap that there is talk about making a virtual vehicle readout which connects to the vehicle computer, and mimics operating conditions. this then allows it to pass smog, as the tech, at a smog check station plugs his connector to the port, and everything reads normal. Meanwhile, all the sensor and actuator controlled items have been stripped, or disabled, and old school physical linkage accel cables, etc run where needed.

I predict that there will be a growing industry (black market of course) to do this more and more, as now vehicles are starting to shut down and become un driveable for reasons that have nothing to do with the actual engine running. In my industry, there are already companies doing this for some of the agencies vehicles, permanently disabling any ability of the vehicle to either transmit, or receive ANY communication with the outside world, in order to prevent outside hacking and remote take over of control. Already self steering, auto brake, fly by wire accel pedals, (parallel park assist, etc) capable systems are banned by some of our industry on their field vehicles.

Many in our industry have been buying older vehicles on purpose as their personal daily drivers, or else they spend $$$$ to have their new vehicles custom retrofitted.

On another note, cell phones and texting are banned because people get distracted and have to take their eyes off the road to look at their display. The new vehicles putting big displays in the dash, creating the very same unsafe driving environment. We rented a Chevy Traverse recently that had this center driver infotainment display, and just to change the volume, or the radio station, you had to scroll through different touch screen menus, totally taking our eyes off the road to to.... we continued our journey with a notebook laid over that screen so we would not be tempted to see what it was constantly displaying... no thanks.... give me a radio with actual physical knobs and buttons, where you dont have to look down to activate.
 

doug720

Expedition Leader
LA County and City Fire Department trucks, pumpers, dozers and other life safety vehicles have had all limp home and auto shutdown software omitted from them. They have several incidences of a sensor failure causing the vehicles to not be able to respond. In addition, their dozers are now running mechanical injection systems in place of common rail for the same reasons. Many fire trucks that respond to or are stationed in brush fire zones have had their DPF systems removed after several trucks burned and are started fires when parked in brush areas.

Unintended consequences....
 

RoyJ

Adventurer
The day when emergency response and military combat vehicles adopt the diesel emissions tech, is the day when I know it's reliable enough to trust on an extended remote expedition.

For instance, I'd say we're definitely there (and even past) for gasoline emissions technology. No one, including military/police/fire/paramedics, would think twice about the catalytic converter, evap canister, and O2 sensors on their truck, even in the middle of Africa.
 

peneumbra

Explorer
I think that vehicles started going downhill (reliability-wise) when the car companies stopped making transmissions out of bronze...
 

haven

Expedition Leader
For a change, here's some positive news for diesel fans: Chevrolet announced plans to make a 1.6L turbodiesel optional in the new Equinox compact SUV. The Equinox shares its platform with the Cruze sedan, which also will receive the small diesel. Torque is estimated to reach 236 ft lb, and the Equinox EPA highway mpg is 40 mpg (probably less with AWD). The new Equinox is expected to be released as a 2018 model in Spring of 2017.

The Equinox is a compact SUV, with interior volume similar to Honda CRV, Subaru Forester and Jeep Wrangler Unlimited.
 

Dan Grec

Expedition Leader
The day when emergency response and military combat vehicles adopt the diesel emissions tech, is the day when I know it's reliable enough to trust on an extended remote expedition.

That's interesting reasoning, and I always find it fascinating that commercial airliners have not adopted computer controlled fuel-injection, because it's not reliable enough!

-Dan
 

nicholastanguma

Los Angeles, San Francisco
And even if you can, who can perform the required programming in 20 - 30 yrs?

If the PCM on my 2014 Ram burns out in 2040, who will have a retro computer with retro OBD ports to attach it to my VIN and all the keyless / remote system?

My Detroit Diesel bus has just passed the 1/2 century mark, and I expected it to out-live my brand new truck!


This ended up being one of the deciding factors in where I chose to hang my "brand hat." I'm not really a die-hard Toyota or VW or *insert brand name here* fanboy, meaning I don't despise other marques or have Harley Davidson tattoos or branded clothing or other such nonsense, but I am (like most here in this thread, I suppose) a person that likes forming a relationship with a machine--and that means holding on to it as long as possible. And that, of course, means doing one's own wrenching. And that, of course, means having a machine that can actually be wrenched on. And that, of course, means having access to parts.

Toyota 22R, Toyota 3TC, Volkswagen 1.9M-TDI, Rover 300TDI. These are some of my favorite inline 4 cylinder engines of all time. Old tech, low tech, with all the aftermarket hop up parts you can want, and dedicated web forums, and specialist builders, and plenty of brand new or new old stock factory parts to hoard for years.

Twenty and thirty years from now I want to be that guy with a collection of old iron and old iron parts and old iron knowledge that modern driving enthusiasts don't even care to think about because the modern appliances they ride are as sterile and disposable as a microwave.

I'm only 35.
 

Regcabguy

Oil eater.
LA County and City Fire Department trucks, pumpers, dozers and other life safety vehicles have had all limp home and auto shutdown software omitted from them. They have several incidences of a sensor failure causing the vehicles to not be able to respond. In addition, their dozers are now running mechanical injection systems in place of common rail for the same reasons. Many fire trucks that respond to or are stationed in brush fire zones have had their DPF systems removed after several trucks burned and are started fires when parked in brush areas.

Unintended consequences....

I'm seeing Fedex and UPS favoring gas rigs over the new diesels with all their emissions equipment. The incremental increase in fuel economy and initial expense just isn't paying off.
I special ordered my Ram a few weeks ahead of the cutoff date for when the dpf,egr and increased sensors appeared. This truck will outlive me.
 

haven

Expedition Leader
VW's emissions cheating scandal put diesel in a bad light in 2016. However, the bad publicity has not deterred all manufacturers. We'll see several new diesels in the 2018 model year.

Ford is rumored to be adding a 3.0L V6 turbodiesel to the the 2018 F150 pickup. It's expected to be the same diesel used by Land Rover in the 2017 Discovery, so about 440 ft lb of torque. The 3.5L Ecoboost gas engine in the F150 is rated to deliver 470 ft lb, so comparing the two engines' performance and fuel economy will be interesting.
http://www.dieselhub.com/halfton/ford-f-150-lion-diesel.html

Also interesting is the natural comparison between Ford and Nissan full size diesel-powered “half ton” trucks. Nissan uses a 5.0L Cummins V8 diesel in their Titan. The engine in the Titan XD has 555 ft lb of torque, but also has to haul around 1500 lb more weight than the aluminum bodied F150.

Chevrolet plans to put a 1.6L diesel (236 ft lb) in the remodeled now-compact Equinox SUV. (Compact means about the size of a Honda CR-V). GM estimates 40 mpg on the highway with FWD. The Chevy Cruze sedan will also be available with the 1.6L diesel. The new Equinox will be a world car, sold on 6 continents (including as a Holden in Australia).
http://media.chevrolet.com/media/us...en/2016/sep/0922-2018-equinox-propulsion.html

The remodeled Jeep Wrangler and Jeep Pickup are rumored to have a diesel option for 2018. It's likely to be the 3.0L diesel currently offered in the Grand Cherokee, where it produces 420 ft lb. of torque.

Mazda says they plan to offer a 2.2L turbo diesel in the next generation CX-5 SUV, planned for late 2017 as a 2018 model. Not many other details released. Since Mazda announced a diesel on at least three occasions since 2010, this has to be in the “I'll believe it when I see it” category.
http://insidemazda.mazdausa.com/press-release/mazda-offer-diesel-engine-new-mazda-cx-5/

Diesel fuel continues to be less expensive than regular unleaded gas. Let's hope the new diesel options will not be hugely more expensive than their gas powered counterparts.
 

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