Making its Lancia debut on the Musa in Frankfurt will be Fiat's new Start&Stop system that was developed by FPT, Bosch and Magneti Marelli, already introduced on the Fiat 500 it is set to also debut at the motor show on the new Punto Evo.

Making its Lancia debut on the Musa in Frankfurt will be Fiat's new Start&Stop system, already introduced on the Fiat 500, and set to also debut at the German motor show on the new Punto Evo, which was developed by FPT, Bosch and Magneti Marelli which aims to increase vehicle efficiency by reducing fuel consumption, harmful gas emissions and noise pollution.

The Start&Stop system recognises when the car is stationary (thanks to position sensors on the brake and clutch pedals and vehicle speed measurements) and, if the engine temperature and battery charge allow, switches off the engine when the driver engages neutral and takes his/her foot off the clutch (for a manual gearbox) or keeps the brake pedal depressed (for a DFN robotised gearbox). Then, it restarts the engine as soon as the clutch pedal is depressed (manual) or the brake pedal is released (DFN). [DFN is the Lancia designation for the Dualogic transmission]. All electrical devices continue to work when the engine is switched off.

In order to maintain comfort levels, the system will not activate in certain conditions: for example, if the air conditioning is on full power, the heated rear window is on, reverse is engaged (e.g. for parking manoeuvres) or the outside temperature is too cold. In addition, the Start&Stop system does not activate if the operation of the car (e.g. the engine is cold, the battery is running low or, in diesel cars, particulate filter regeneration is taking place) or the safety of the driver and passengers (e.g. the driver's door is not closed or the safety belt is not fastened) is compromised.

The engine can be stopped automatically only once a speed of about 10 km/h has been reached, to prevent the engine from being repeatedly stopped when driving at walking pace.If the engine has been automatically switched off for more than three minutes, it starts up again. If, after the engine has automatically restarted, the driver is inactive for around three minutes, the Start&Stop system turns off the engine once and for all, to prevent fuel consumption (Energy Saving function). In this case, the engine can be restarted only by using the key. The system is enabled every time the car is started, and can be disabled/re-enabled by a button located on the dashboard which has a light that comes on when the system is disabled (a message also appears on the instrument panel). The Start&Stop system is most effective when the car is used primarily in towns and cities, where it reduces fuel consumption by 10 per cent in the urban cycle.

At Frankfurt, the system is paired with the 95 hp 1.4 16v Euro 5 engine, whose CO2 emissions are cut (in the mixed cycle) from 146 to 140 g/km (with manual gearbox) and from 136 to 130 g/km (with DFN robotised sequential gearbox) compared with the version without Start&Stop.

The introduction of the Start&Stop system to the "city limousine" just a few months after the launch of the ECOCHIC hybrid petrol/LPG versions is yet another example of Lancia Automobiles being constantly aware of environmental issues by researching and developing concrete and affordable solutions. This strategy can be summed up in the motto "The environment is a luxury we can all afford".


2009 Interfuture Media/Italiaspeed