Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Environment charter a key component for Suzuki product development

Recognizing the changing social circumstances surrounding its global operations, Suzuki Motor Corporation has issued a global environmental charter that clearly outlines its corporate policy to pass on to the next generation a clean environment and bountiful society. Aside from observing environmental laws, Suzuki has also taken the initiative of reducing the pressure placed on the environment by developing eco-friendly vehicles for the global market.

In all its product development efforts, Suzuki engineers are mandated to focus on: (1) improving fuel efficiency; (2) reducing exhaust emissions; (3) promoting the 3Rs – reduce, reuse, recycle; (4) managing and reducing materials with environmental impact; and (5) noise reduction.

Suzuki automobiles have earned a well-deserved reputation for fuel-efficient performance. These have been achieved through engine design, use of continuously variable transmission (CVT), reduced vehicle weight, and better aerodynamics. A new mini-vehicle launched abroad, the Suzuki Cervo SR was introduced with a direct injection intercooler turbo engine and a 7-speed CVT. This achieved emissions 75% lower than 2005 emission standards, the only mini turbo vehicle compatible with the green taxation plan. For its motorcycle models, Suzuki is starting to switch to electronically controlled fuel injection systems to optimize fuel management and reduce emissions for some models launched abroad.

To reduce vehicle weight, Suzuki R&D engineers have improved manufacturing methods to strengthen and reinforce body parts while controlling weight. High-tensile steel is used extensively in all Suzuki vehicles for lighter vehicles with better collision energy absorption. Alternator loads have been reduced to minimize electric power consumption for lamps and other electric components. Suzuki vehicles are also starting to incorporate fuel consumption indicators in their instrument panels to encourage drivers to implement fuel-efficient driving.

For its recycling efforts, Suzuki has succeeded in recycling used glass from end-of-life vehicles, considered a difficult challenge for many automotive manufacturers. This is in addition to extensive application of recyclable resin parts. Suzuki designers are also working to reduce or eliminate environmental impact materials such as lead, mercury, hexavelent chromium, and cadmium in Suzuki vehicles.

Another area that Suzuki is working on is in reducing traffic noise produced by vehicles, particularly those produced by the engine, transmission, intake and exhaust systems, etc. Suzuki vehicles are designed with sound insulation covers to prevent noise leakage.

At the 2009 Tokyo Motor Show, Suzuki Motor Corporation exhibited several concept vehicles employing alternative energy sources, including... 

the Burgman fuel-cell scooter...


the SX4-FCV...

the Swift Hybrid...

and a fuel-cell personal mobility vehicle.

Global warming countermeasures, measures for reducing environmental impact substances and measures for recycling are some of the environmental issues that the Suzuki Group has dealt with over the past years. Establishing compatibility between environmental measures and future corporate growth is major managerial challenge for Suzuki. So that the costs of environmental measures are not passed on to consumers, Suzuki has vigorously conducted R&D as well as capital investments in order to provide products of even higher added value.

The Suzuki Group is composed of 177 companies, including sales-related subsidiaries, manufacturing-related subsidiaries, and non-manufacturing related subsidiaries. All Group companies are mandated to implement the Suzuki Global Environment Charter.

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