Hella Says Proven Technologies Help Automakers Meet U.S. Rules

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PLYMOUTH, Mich. – Proven energy-management technologies will provide the key to meeting new U.S. fuel-economy regulations, according to Hella, a global supplier of automotive electronics and lighting systems.

Despite a growing interest in hybrids and alternative-fuel vehicles, Hella believes North Americans in the near future actually will prefer more fuel-efficient versions of the cars and trucks they are currently driving. The company pointed out that significant fuel-cost savings can be achieved on current production vehicles through electronics and lighting technologies already in use in Europe.

“Hybrid and electric vehicles are not the only ways to improve fuel economy,” said Dr. Martin Fischer, president of Hella Electronics Corporation. “For more than 14 years, we have been providing automakers with fuel-saving technologies such as start-stop controls, intelligent battery sensors, accelerator pedal sensors, fuel and oil-quality sensors, demand-driven fuel pumps, electric vacuum pumps and electric turbo charger actuators.”

He noted that Hella’s full-LED-lighting and HID-lighting systems can reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions, as well.

“The cumulative benefits of these technologies can have a significant impact on a vehicle’s overall fuel economy, increasing its efficiency by up to 30 percent,” Fisher pointed out.

In a study of two European cars with similar engines (approximately 138 horsepower, 229 foot-pounds of torque), the vehicle with a start-stop system, which includes Hella’s intelligent battery sensor and voltage stabilizer, produced 17 percent less carbon dioxide than the one without these technologies. Fuel consumption for the Hella-equipped car also was 20 percent better.

In the U.S., the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency have said they fully expect auto manufacturers to meet the new federal standards, announced April 1, by “more widespread adoption of conventional technologies that are already in commercial use.”

“Hella has said for some time there is no ‘silver bullet’ when it comes to fuel efficiency,” Fischer noted. “A variety of electronics will play an important role in helping automakers reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions in the future.

About Hella

Hella KGaA Hueck & Co. develops and manufactures lighting and electronics components and systems for the automotive industry. Its joint venture companies also produce complete vehicle modules, air-conditioning systems and vehicle electric systems. In addition, Hella has one of the largest automotive aftermarket organizations in the world, with its own sales companies and partners in more than 100 countries.

Hella Group sales were $4.68 billion in fiscal year 2008-2009. Hella is one of the top 50 automotive parts suppliers in the world and one of the 100 largest industrial companies in Germany. Nearly 23,000 people work at 70 locations in more than 30 countries, including more than 3,200 research-and-development engineers and technicians. Additional information is available at www.hella.com.

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