2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo: Auto Stop-Start Conversion
August 19, 2014
Like the rest of the world, I've hated the auto stop-start feature that's been cropping up in cars for the last couple of years. But after two days of letting it operate as intended in our 2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo, I think it may be a good thing.
Once I got past the "my engine is dead" reaction that the auto stop-start system evokes when you first find it in use, I noticed that it brings a moment of welcome quiet into the cabin. The systems also save on gas. Industry estimates say they can cut combined city-highway fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by 3-10 percent. So I figured, let the little guy do his job.
Our review of the 2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo criticized auto stop-start for not restarting smoothly. But with use, I didn't find it particularly rough or jarring. Manufacturers such as BMW will undoubtedly work on refining these systems so that drivers will stop turning them off.
In any event, we're going to find auto stop-start on more and more cars in the future. Johnson Controls, a maker of the advanced batteries used in the systems, predicted in 2012 that global production would rise from 3 million that year to 35 million per year in 2025.
How do you vote: Stop the stop-start? Or let them roll?
Carroll Lachnit, Features Editor @ 14,670 miles