70 mpg Daihatsu Is No Charade

By Sam Grossman | July 20, 2011
Not many people in the U.S. remember Japanese manufacturer Daihatsu's brief stint here in the late 1980s. With only a single subcompact called the Charade to compete against giants like Toyota, Honda, and Nissan, the company withdrew from the U.S. after only a few years. However, in Japan and elsewhere it lives on as a low-cost, fuel-efficient Toyota subsidiary, and the little company is making big news with the announcement of its new Energy Saving Technology. Without the assistance of hybrid, electric or other expensive tech, Daihatsu says its "e:S Technology" will return up to 70 mpg, and improve emissions by almost 40 percent. If this is indeed true, this all-new vehicle will be the most fuel efficient non-hybrid car in the world, at an expected price of 800,000 yen, or just over $10,000. The new mini-car will feature an all-new engine with maximum fuel efficiency and minimum energy loss. It achieves this in part with start-stop technology that turns the engine off when the vehicle isn't moving. It also gets a system that converts energy from the rear brakes into electric energy, which recharges the car's battery but doesn't provide any power to move the vehicle itself. The engine will be paired with an efficient continuously variable transmission (CVT).
The good news is that since Daihatsu is owned by Toyota, this e:S Technology could find its way into U.S. market Toyotas. That means sometime in the near future you could be driving next to a 70 mpg Toyota, or even have one sitting in your garage. Source: AutoGuide, Daihatsu