Pros and Cons of Start-Stop Systems for Volkswagen SUVs
Start-stop systems have become prevalent in modern vehicles, including Volkswagen SUVs like Tiguan and Taos. This innovative technology is designed to improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions by automatically shutting off the engine when it is idle.
While these systems can offer significant benefits, they also come with certain challenges that potential buyers must be aware of. Therefore, understanding the pros and cons of start-stop systems is crucial before purchasing a Volkswagen SUV equipped with this technology.
The Pros of Start-Stop Systems
Start-stop systems bring numerous benefits to the table, particularly for those who wish to be more environmentally conscious and cost-aware. One of the primary advantages is that these systems adhere to idling regulations, especially if the engine is rated as a “clean idle” engine by the Air Resource Board (ARB).
Another key advantage revolves around maintaining desirable cabin conditions during idling. With a start-stop system, the vehicle’s engine can switch off when stationary, allowing the cabin’s temperature to remain comfortable without the vehicle consuming excess fuel.
Furthermore, these systems enhance fuel efficiency by reducing gas consumption in heavy traffic or slow-moving driving conditions. The system minimizes wasteful emissions by automatically shutting down and restarting the engine, thus saving fuel and helping the environment.
The Cons of Start-Stop Systems
Despite their benefits, start-stop systems also have certain drawbacks that potential users should consider. One such drawback is the excessive wear your engine and powertrain sustain from more frequent start-stop cycles. Cars with this feature might require costly replacements and repairs more often than those without.
Additionally, older start-stop systems (15 years or older) are typically quite jerky when operating the engine. This creates uncomfortable vibrations and movements for the driver and passengers, decreasing the quality of the ride. In rare instances, the constant jerking from the system can cause mechanical issues for other vehicle parts.
Start-Stop Systems and Overlanding
Considering the many pros and cons of start-stop systems for your Volkswagen SUV, it’s natural to wonder if this system would benefit an overlanding-specific vehicle. On one hand, a start-stop system can be advantageous for maintaining comfortable cabin conditions in extreme environments. This is especially beneficial if you sleep in your overlanding SUV while out in the wilderness.
However, overlanding modifications aren’t cheap, and the last thing anyone wants is to spend more time and money repairing powertrain parts worn out from excessive idling. If you use your overlander predominantly for off-roading purposes rather than traffic-heavy roads, the fuel efficiency benefits of a start-stop system may not be as significant.
Can You Install a Start-Stop System?
While it’s possible to install a start-stop system in a Volkswagen SUV that doesn’t already have one, nearly all automotive manufacturers advise against this. Without additional modifications to the starter, battery, and computer system, simply installing a start-stop system can cause damage to your battery and ignition. Unless you plan on retrofitting multiple components, it may be wiser to either purchase a vehicle with a start-stop system already installed or opt not to use the feature at all.
Thankfully, there are plenty of modifications suitable for your VW SUV, and our B2BFAB team proudly carries a quality selection of these items for your overlanding needs! Browse our selection of quality Volkswagen lift kit products and related overlanding accessories today.