Fuel efficiency collaboration good for Australian fleets

Fuel efficiency is consistently a headache for fleet managers. Through trying to organise business logistics, there can be little time for checking how much fuel a vehicle is guzzling down.    

To complement what fleet management software can already achieve comes an announcement earlier this month from Japan. With the majority of overseas vehicles coming from the automotive giant, fleets will welcome the news that eight automakers are teaming up to carry out research on fuel-efficient engines.

This could mean vehicle prices could decrease in Australia and fuel consumption costs will be significantly lower for fleets.

The partnership between Toyota Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Co. will also include popular car brands such as Nissan Motor Co., Suzuki Motor Corp., Daihatsu Motor Co., Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., Mazda Motor Corp. and Mitsubishi Motors Corp.

Japan's Mainichi Shimbun reports the businesses will study exhaust purification technologies for diesel vehicles as well as combustion techniques for gasoline and diesel engines. Knowledge from engineering departments at local Japanese universities will also be utilised.  

The car market particularly in Japan is so fierce that despite the research collaboration, each company will develop their own engines separately based on the results. This will enable fleets in Australia to have a wide range of vehicles to choose from in coming years all with slight variations, but with the same fuel efficiency capabilities.

A recent successful partnership was highlighted by Gizmodo Australia with Toyota and Fuji Heavy Industries working on the Subaru BRZ. The engine is mostly Subaru-designed, but Toyota added a direct fuel injection into the specifications.

The agreement will need extensive funding over the next few years to achieve their goal, but if it is successful there should be widespread benefits for fleets not only around Australia, but around the world.