Systematic Formulation of Efficient and Durable Axle Lubricants for Light Trucks and Sport Utility Vehicles
Consumer demand for size, weight and horsepower has dictated a prominent role for sport utility vehicles and light trucks in the product lines of major North American automobile manufacturers. Inherently less efficient than passenger cars, these vehicles will be facing more stringent light duty CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) standards beginning in 2005 when mileage targets will be elevated to 21 mpg; this figure will be further increased to 22.2 mpg by 2007. In order to accommodate both public demand and CAFE requirements, vehicle manufacturers are seeking ways to improve fuel economy through design and material modifications as well as through improvements in lubrication. The axle lubricant may have an important impact on fuel economy, and axle lubricants can be tailored to deliver higher levels of operating efficiency over a wide range of conditions.