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Technical Paper

Performance and Efficiency Assessment of a Production CNG Vehicle Compared to Its Gasoline Counterpart

Two modern light-duty passenger vehicles were selected for chassis dynamometer testing to evaluate differences in performance end efficiency resulting from CNG and gasoline combustion in a vehicle-based context. The vehicles were chosen to be as similar as possible apart from fuel type, sharing similar test weights and identical driveline configurations. Both vehicles were tested over several chassis dynamometer driving cycles, where it was found that the CNG vehicle exhibited 3-9% lower fuel economy than the gasoline-fueled subject. Performance tests were also conducted, where the CNG vehicle's lower tractive effort capability and longer acceleration times were consistent with the lower rated torque and power of its engine as compared to the gasoline model. The vehicles were also tested using quasi-steady-state chassis dynamometer techniques, wherein a series of engine operating points were studied.
Journal Article

A Comparison of Cold-Start Behavior and its Impact on Fuel Economy for Advanced Technology Vehicles

Vehicle operation during cold-start powertrain conditions can have a significant impact on drivability, fuel economy and tailpipe emissions in modern passenger vehicles. As efforts continue to maximize fuel economy in passenger vehicles, considerable engineering resources are being spent in order to reduce the consumption penalties incurred shortly after engine start and during powertrain warmup while maintaining suitably low levels of tailpipe emissions. Engine downsizing, advanced transmissions and hybrid-electric architecture can each have an appreciable effect on cold-start strategy and its impact on fuel economy. This work seeks to explore the cold-start strategy of several passenger vehicles with different powertrain architectures and to understand the resulting fuel economy impact relative to warm powertrain operation. To this end, four vehicles were chosen with different powertrain architectures.