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Chart: Automakers’ Adoption of Fuel-Saving Technologies

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Adoption of fuel-saving technologies

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Automakers’ Adoption of Fuel-Saving Technologies

Over the past few decades, automakers have invested plenty of time and money into various fuel-saving technologies. This includes innovations such as direct injection, cylinder deactivation, and auto start-stop features.

Keeping track of which companies have adopted these technologies can be difficult. Thankfully, the EPA’s 2022 Automotive Trends Report includes data that shows which automakers have adopted what technologies.

Understanding the Data

The percentages in this infographic show how 14 major automakers have adopted various fuel-saving technologies into their lineups. The report did not specify if this data is for North American models only.

BrandTurboDirect InjectionCylinder Deact.CVT7+ GearsStart-StopHybridPHEV/EV/FC
Subaru22%99%0%95%0%80%0%0%
Nissan5%72%0%87%12%0%0%1%
Honda53%79%25%61%38%24%7%0%
Mazda27%100%45%0%0%0%0%0%
Toyota3%0%0%36%38%19%22%2%
Kia26%47%0%42%45%50%2%0%
Hyundai18%44%0%23%46%21%4%2%
BMW99%99%0%0%98%64%25%7%
Volkswagen77%94%3%0%90%71%20%7%
Mercedes-Benz94%100%8%0%100%77%22%0%
Tesla0%0%0%0%0%0%0%100%
Ford80%56%21%2%92%83%5%3%
GM37%91%54%9%74%75%0%1%
Stellantis13%10%22%1%96%45%15%3%

There are several geographical trends hidden within this dataset. To make them more obvious, we color-coded the 14 automakers by their nationality.

Asian Automakers

Starting from the top of the graphic, we can see that Japanese automakers are big proponents of gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines, as well as continuously variable transmissions (CVT).

With a GDI engine, fuel is injected directly into the combustion chamber at high pressure. This is more precise than the traditional method known as port injection, which results in greater fuel efficiency and lower emissions.

CVT transmissions use pulleys instead of gears to improve fuel efficiency. CVTs are best paired with smaller, lower output engines, which may explain why Japanese automakers (who have a history of building smaller cars) have adopted them so widely.

Note that Toyota is listed as having 0% adoption of direct injection, but this isn’t exactly true. The automaker uses its D4-S system, which is a combination of both port and direct fuel injection.

South Korean automakers, on the other hand, have a more balanced technology profile, adopting a wider number of technologies, but each to a lesser degree.

German Automakers

German automakers are well-known for their expertise in building combustion engines, so it’s no surprise they use turbocharging and direct injection in nearly every model.

They’ve also heavily adopted high gear-count transmissions (7 or more gears), which can not only enable better fuel efficiency, but also faster acceleration. The downside to these transmissions is that they can be very heavy and complex.

Furthermore, German automakers utilize the auto start-stop feature in many of their vehicles, and are tied with Toyota in terms of hybrid adoption.

American & Other Automakers

Ford and GM’s technology profile is similar to the Germans, using turbocharging and direct injection combined with 7+ gear transmissions.

GM uses turbocharging less frequently, but stands out with its high usage of cylinder deactivation technology, at 54% of models. Referred to by GM as Active Fuel Management (AFM), this feature shuts down half of the engine’s cylinders during light driving.

GM is known for its small-block V8 engines, which can be had in many of the company’s models. Given the high cylinder count of a V8, AFM is a clever trick for improving fuel efficiency.

Stellantis, which is a merger between Italian-American Fiat Chrysler and French Peugeot, has not widely adopted many technologies except for the 7+ gear transmission.

Finally there’s Tesla, which does not use any of the aforementioned technologies due to it being a pure electric automaker.

Going The Way of the Dinosaur

The technologies shown in this infographic have helped to bring the average mpg of a new car to record highs in recent years.

Many of these innovations could become obsolete as automakers slowly phase out gasoline engines. In 2021, six major automakers including Ford, Mercedes-Benz, and GM pledged to phase out the sale of new gasoline and diesel-powered cars by 2040.

Other companies such as Porsche believe that the combustion engine still has a future, pointing to synthetic fuels as a means of significantly reducing CO2 emissions.

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40 Years of U.S. Wildfires, in One Chart

Wildfires are blazing across the U.S with unprecedented intensity. Here is how activity has evolved over four decades.

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The following content is sponsored by Carbon Streaming

Note: This infographic contains forward looking information based on current expectations and beliefs of Carbon Streaming Corporation. For further information about the risks, uncertainties and assumptions related to such forward looking information, please see their legal notice.

40 Years of U.S. Wildfires, in One Chart

Wildfires are becoming more intense and widespread—largely due to rising temperatures caused by climate change. 

What’s more, experts predict a whopping 50% surge in wildfires by 2100.

We partnered with Carbon Streaming to illustrate four decades (1983–2023) of wildfire activity in the U.S. Let’s dive in.

The Evolution of Wildfires Over Time

The data we used comes from the National Interagency Fire Center and highlights the number of wildfires that occurred between 1983 and 2023, along with the average acres burned over the same time period. The 5-year rolling average was calculated based on the current year plus the preceding four years.

As the table below shows, the total area burned across the U.S. in 2023 was significantly below average, and the number of wildfires was slightly below average due in part to cooler weather conditions.

YearNumber of WildfiresAcres Burned 5-Year Rolling Average
202356,5802,693,9106,436,687
202268,9887,577,1837,651,404
202158,9857,125,6438,141,184
202058,95010,122,3367,818,055
201950,4774,664,3647,818,617
201858,0838,767,4927,604,867
201771,49910,026,0866,715,278
201667,7435,509,9956,575,308
201568,15110,125,1497,215,583
201463,3123,595,6135,875,098
201347,5794,319,5466,340,332
201267,7749,326,2386,534,917
201174,1268,711,3676,535,278
201071,9713,422,7246,767,754
200978,7925,921,7867,821,087
200878,9795,292,4688,256,305
200785,7059,328,0457,989,980
200696,3859,873,7457,561,314
200566,7538,689,3896,300,747
200465,4618,097,880*6,041,568
200363,6293,960,8425,547,210
200273,4577,184,7125,020,983
200184,0793,570,9114,155,432
200092,2507,393,4934,654,449
199992,4875,626,0933,543,860
199881,0431,329,7043,233,357
199766,1962,856,9593,326,931
199696,3636,065,9983,169,525
199582,2341,840,5462,547,041
199479,1074,073,5793,103,256
199358,8101,797,5742,654,002
199287,3942,069,9293,296,346
199175,7542,953,5783,371,819
199066,4814,621,6213,324,936
198948,9491,827,3102,979,841
198872,7505,009,2902,844,061
198771,3002,447,2962,106,936
198685,9072,719,162N/A
198582,5912,896,147N/A
198420,4931,148,409N/A
198318,2291,323,666N/A

*2004 fires and acres do not include state lands for North Carolina

What’s the impact of the increasing burned areas and severity of wildfires over time? 

Simply put, when wildfires burn, they release smoke and gas into the air which makes the Earth warmer, making it easier for more wildfires to start and spread. This cycle is often referred to as the fires and climate feedback loop, and is the reason why experts believe that wildfires will only continue to worsen.

Wildfire Havoc in the West

2023 marked a year of severe wildfire destruction on the West Coast and in Hawaii. The Maui wildfires in August, for example, led to the destruction of 2,308 structures and at time of writing, 5,000 residents are still displaced six months later. Additionally, the cost of rebuilding Maui could exceed $5 billion and take several years.

Post-wildfire restoration is a critical piece of climate change mitigation, particularly in the states that need it the most. 

What Can Be Done?

In partnership with Mast Reforestation, Carbon Streaming is advancing its pipeline of post-wildfire reforestation projects in Western U.S. states. 

To date, Carbon Streaming has entered into carbon credit streams to provide funding for three reforestation projects—Sheep Creek in Montana and Feather River and Baccala Ranch in California.

Mast Reforestation’s unique approach combines proven reforestation practices with new technology to regrow resilient, climate-adapted forests. Want to know more?

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