Do you want to save fuel costs, contribute to lower CO2 emissions and better air quality, and drive in a relaxed manner? Clever use of the accelerator pedal and engine speed, as well as a forward-looking driving style, will enable you to save up to 15% fuel with a few tips.

 

Your driving style has the greatest influence on fuel consumption. However, eco-driving is only really effective if your vehicle is fit: regular inspections are a prerequisite for your engine to work efficiently, and modern low-friction oils also reduce friction in the engine. Low-friction tyres and increased tyre pressure of up to 0.3 bar above the manufacturer’s specifications also enable savings. Transporting excess cargo and unused roof racks unnecessarily increases your fuel consumption. Other “fuel guzzlers” are various electrical consumers and the air conditioning system. Therefore, I advise you to use these “features” sensibly: Basically, you only need the “air conditioning” to dehumidify the windscreen and at higher temperatures. I advise you, in high heat, to open the side windows at low speeds to allow the heat to escape. With the windows closed and the air conditioning on, you can then regulate the temperature.

 

When starting from cold, do not allow the engine to warm up while stationary, but drive off immediately. The acceleration process can be quite brisk, i.e. press the accelerator pedal progressively up to 60 %. Picking up speed will be faster and you will consume less overall. During this process, you shift the gearbox up continuously and can limit the speed to 2000 rpm in the following way, depending on the type of car. As soon as you reach the adjusted speed, you drive at low revs in the highest possible gear.

 

Now it is important for you to think ahead. In practice, this means keeping a sufficient distance from the vehicle in front. In this way, you avoid unnecessary acceleration and braking manoeuvres. The result is a relaxed, energy-saving and smooth driving style. When driving on the motorway, it is worth maintaining a constant cruising speed with the help of the cruise control. On uphill gradients, use the momentum, similar to cycling. Particular savings potential lies in coasting before stopping or when driving downhill. With the appropriate gear engaged in overrun mode, the injection supply is interrupted via the engine control unit when the throttle is closed. Fuel consumption is zero during this phase.

 

We will be offering Eco-Driving training courses at the ACL from September. You can register for an appointment by calling 450045-4012 .

Frank Maas

Automobile Club du Luxembourg ASBL

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