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Posts Tagged ‘eco-driving’

Americans are Driving More, But Using Less Fuel

Study shows vehicles are more fuel efficient than ever.

by on Aug.05, 2013

Americans are driving more, but using less gasoline due to improved fuel efficiency.

Americans continue to drive more as the economy recovers but even so, they’re using less fuel according to a new study from the University of Michigan.

In addition, despite a surge in pickup truck sales keyed to the upturn in the housing market, the average fuel economy of model year 2013 vehicles sold thus far (October 2012 through July 2013) is 24.7 miles per gallon.

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“This is up 1.2 mpg from model year 2012 vehicles,” U-M’s Transportation Research Institute in Ann Arbor, Mich. noted in its monthly Eco-Driving Index (EDI). (more…)

Swiss Firm To Use Tesla Roadsters For Eco-Tourism

Formula One driver wants to offer some performance to green-minded travelers.

by on Oct.11, 2010

Former F1 driver Erik Comas with anew Tesla Roadster, one of 5 for his new Green Car Challenge.

There are plenty of eco-minded tour operators who’ll send you to a tree house in Costa Rica and maybe provide a bicycle for transportation.  But Formula One driver Erik Comas wants to appeal to those who still like a thrill behind the wheel while doing something that’s reasonably friendly to the environment.

He’s launching a new program, called the Green Car Challenge, which will let like-minded vacationers tackle some of the world’s most scenic – and challenging — roadways while driving cars that leave little more than tire prints behind.

Comas, who raced the F1 circuit from 1991 to 1994, has acquired five Tesla Roadsters for his new company.  They will be used for multi-day tours through the Swiss Alps and the French countryside.

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“I love nature, but I also love cars.  The good thing about the Tesla is you can still enjoy quick cars and yet be friendly with the environment,” Comas said during an interview with TheDetroitBureau.com.

While he continued racing after he retired from the Formula One circuit, Comas began a tourism business aimed at a combination of motor sport wannabes and corporate groups looking for a way to encourage team-building and bonding.

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An Eco-Driving Primer

Squeezing every mile out of a gallon.

by on Apr.22, 2009

It doesn't take much work to save several mpg and turn yourself into an Eco-Driver.

It doesn't take much work to save several mpg and turn yourself into an Eco-Driver.

It’s not easy getting 30 mpg.  Especially not if you’re driving the new 2010 Toyota Prius, which is rated at a combined 50 miles to the gallon.  But with my afternoon driving partner, that’s precisely what we set out to do, breaking just about every rule you could think of to ensure poor mileage.

In other words, we drove the way many folks do every single day, racing up to stoplights, then slamming on the brakes, revving the engines while we waited.  We used every opportunity to pass, tailgated almost constantly and launched off each light with the accelerator pedal pressed flat to the floor.

Even that yielded what most folks would consider great fuel economy in the Prius – but we got only a little more than half what the hybrid-electric vehicle was rated to deliver.  Several colleagues, driving with the intent to maximize their mileage, on the other hand, turned in fuel economy numbers of more than 70 mpg, at the end of the afternoon.

Subscribe to TheDetroitBureau.comEvery car is rated by the federal government as to what mileage you can expect, both in the city and on the highway.  Changes to the testing process, in 2008, made the Munroney sticker, on the side of each new vehicle, more accurate than ever.  Even so, as they say, “mileage may vary.”  All sorts of factors can come into play: the fuel you use, traffic conditions, even the altitude you live at.  But the most important factor of all is you, the driver.

Even the most mild-mannered motorist can pick up a few miles a gallon by learning some basic eco-driving tips.  And for more aggressive drivers – notice me raising my own hand – the impact can be as much as 30 to 40 percent or more.

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