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Projected Fuel Consumption Characteristics of Hybrid and Fuel Cell Vehicles for 2015-2045


Research Report

Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways (STEPS), Plug-In Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Research Center

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Suggested Citation:
Burke, Andrew and Hengbing Zhao (2010) Projected Fuel Consumption Characteristics of Hybrid and Fuel Cell Vehicles for 2015-2045. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, Research Report UCD-ITS-RR-10-33

There are presently a number of technologies being developed that will reduce fuel consumption of passenger cars and SUVs. These technologies are advanced, higher efficiency engines, hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs and PHEVs), and fuel cell powered vehicles (FCVs). Fuel economies using these technologies have been projected by performing a series of simulations of the advanced vehicles on different driving cycles using the best component models available and control strategies intended to maximize the driveline efficiency. The time period considered in this paper is 2015-2045. The baseline vehicle is that being marketed in 2007. The simulations were run for a mid-size passenger car and a compact SUV. The results of the simulations are presented in terms of the equivalent gasoline fuel economy and reductions in fuel usage are then calculated. As expected, the magnitude of the fuel/energy savings is highest using the fuel cell technology. However, the differences between the technologies are not as large as one might have expected. The fuel savings of the fuel cell vehicles compared to the improved conventional engine/transmission powertrains is about a factor of two and compared to the HEV (charge sustaining) powertrains is only about 15%. In terms of saving petroleum, the PHEV offers the greatest opportunity for fuel savings especially the 40-60 mile design. In general, good agreement was found between the fuel economy and fuel/energy savings projected and those previously published by DOE and MIT.

 Keywords: fuel economy, fuel savings, vehicle simulations, advanced technologies
Presented at the 25th World Battery, Hybrid and Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle Symposium & Exhibition (EVS25), Shenzhen, China, Nov. 5-9, 2010.