New Patent from Honda: Multi-Displacement Engines

Honda has been caught in the patent, well before the jerked it from the public eye, with a new patent on an engine with different displacement sizes on a four cylinder engine. This would allow for cylinder shut-off resulting in the potential of having an engine running in 15 different displacement configurations for maximum economy or power. Very interesting. Read more at: or Only time will tell if it every gets used in production models. Below are several patented designs that did not.

GM actually filed for patent on a Variable Displacement Piston Engine in 1979 by changing the displacement through a variable stroke length mechanism, but it never caught on.

Read more about GM’s design at:

Honda later cited GM’s patent when it came up with a variable stroke method of its own, but also , to my knowledge, never implemented it into a production model car:

Ut oh… BOSCH is named in VW “Clean” Diesel Scandal

“Volkswagen’s fraudulent scheme was facilitated and aided and abetted by defendant Bosch, which created the software used in Volkswagen’s defeat device.”


The lawsuit goes on to say that Bosch is liable for triple damages for the fraud caused to U.S. consumers under anti-racketeering laws.

The latest lawsuit says “as early as 2007, Bosch warned Volkswagen that using its software in vehicles that were driven on the road would constitute a criminal offence. Nevertheless, Bosch proceeded to sell or license 11 million of the component devices to Volkswagen over the next seven years.”
Read more at Reuters.

Affected vehicles include the 2009-2015 Volkswagen Beetle TDI, Golf TDI, Jetta TDI, and Jetta Sportwagen TDI; the 2014-2015 Volkswagen Passat TDI; and the 2009-2015 Audi A3 TDI.

Wow! VW is in deep shit over this one.

The diesel cars were programmed to sense when emissions were being tested and to turn on equipment that reduced emissions, according to United States officials. At other times, the cars had better fuel economy and performance, but produced as much as 40 times the allowed amount of nitrogen oxide, a pollutant that can contribute to respiratory problems including asthma, bronchitis and emphysema.


What cars are affected by this?

The cars are 2009 to 2015 TDI Volkswagen Golf, Jetta, Beetle and Audi A3s, and the 2014 to 2015 Passat. All are powered by the company’s 2.0-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder engines. There are other diesels engines in the greater VW stable, but those aren’t affected here as far as we know.

VW Audi Haldex Service is Important

Haldex Filter DisassembledRecently while performing a Haldex service I discovered that the local Las Vegas Volkswagen and Audi dealers do not stock the filters or fluids needed to perform this service on your Quattro.

First, I should explain what Haldex is. Per VW’s innovation website:

The Haldex coupling is an electronically controlled multi-plate clutch. On the 4MOTION permanent four-wheel drive system, it enables the propulsive power to be distributed variably between the front and rear wheels. Its continuous adjustment is performed by a control unit that takes slip, handling conditions and drive torque into account.

The Haldex coupling’s action is permanently integrated into the electronic stabilization program ESP and therefore improves the vehicle’s safety.

Second, I would like to explain why it is very important to replace the fluid and filter every 30-40,000 miles. The Haldex system, although impressively functional, has required service intervals due to the amount of friction material that introduced to the fluid during normal use. The filter, a tiny fleece filter will only perform well when it is not clogged with this friction “dust”.  After the filter in no longer efficiently cleaning out the foreign materials then the likelihood of the Haldex Control unit becoming stuck or damaged increases greatly.

So the question is, would you rather perform a $170 service every 30-40,000 miles or replace the Haldex Control unit for nearly $2000? Get the correct service completed at the Las Vegas Car Fixer. We have your fluid and filter in stock and the right tools and knowledge for the job, unlike our local dealers.Haldex Control Unit


Land Rover – Range Rover Key Won’t Turn

land rover steering columnSo if you own a Range Rover you hopefully have not experienced a common problem which requires the replacement of the entire steering column. The entire job take approximately three hours to complete, so labor expense is not a big deal, but parts can be quite costly. To make the situation even worse for some owners, the columns for older models are no longer being manufactured.

The problem: The steering wheel lock ECU has a physical locking bolt driven by a motor and cam assembly which over time becomes stuck and does not provide it’s position to the ECU. Since the Steering lock ECU does not know if it is locked or not (hazardous if locked and driving) then it does not command the ignition switch to unlock. The majority of the time, this scenario is caused by the lubrication drying out on the steering lock actuator.

The solution: 1) replace the steering column or 2) lubricate the actuator.

So if your steering column lock is slow to unlock, I would recommend bringing it in for lubrication BEFORE it fails completely because after it gets stuck simply lubricating it may not bring it back to life. Why do you need preventative lubrication, you might ask? Because they can cost over $5000 just for the part. So be aware and have an educated mechanic help you save money.  Come by or call The Las Vegas Car Fixer for more information.