Monday, June 23, 2008

Daimler Takes Aim at Fuel Efficiency Across Entire Fleet


FRANKFURT, DE -- Daimler will take a tip from BMW and improve fuel efficiency across its fleet portfolio, rather than focus on a select group of models.

The company’s BlueEFFICIENCY program will begin with 20 models this year to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and improve fuel economy by 12 percent, Reuters reported. The approach is similar to BMW’s EfficientDynamics program, according to Thomas Weber, Daimler’s head of research and development.

“We will go through every single model with a fine-tooth comb, nothing will be spared examination," Weber told the Stuttgarter Zeitung in an interview.

Daimler plans to improve engine efficiency and aerodynamics of its fleet, as well as lower roll resistance of its tires to drive fuel economy. The company sees its program of helping it reach its goal of reducing CO2 emissions to 138 grams per kilometer, as set by the European Commission.

BMW is spending millions to implement its EfficientDynamics program across its fleet, but critics say it is one of the factors behind the company’s struggling profit margins.

Still, environmental concerns are playing heavily in the minds of consumers, and the price of oil is expected to remain high, Weber said.

"The trend will continue,” Weber said. “We are finding ourselves in a dramatic transition phase and we are making adjustments to this in product development."

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