Economy driving: Peugeot 308
"How do you solve the fuel crisis? Drive smarter!"
By Karl Peskett
Several of these options will be detailed in future CarAdvice articles. But this week, we had an opportunity to test how smarter driving would improve our efficiency. The test candidate for this challenge was the Peugeot 308 XSE turbo petrol manual.
Driving an allocated route around Parliament House, the MPs managed an average consumption figure of 4.18-litres/100km, based on the Taylor's driving tips.
Plus, diesel is said to be skyrocketing price-wise, which negates any cost savings from using less fuel. Alarmingly, it is accelerating away from petrol in the price race towards $2/litre - in the city that is.
We then set off, resisting the urge to drive like a normal motoring journalist would. Damn, it's hard....
So you need to look ahead to ascertain what the traffic is doing, in which case you can preselect gears, and judge your braking. The more you can keep on the roll, the better off you're going to be.
Sharp turns can be negotiated without losing momentum - this helps on the consistent speed front.
With a manual car, you need to just nudge the bottom edge of the torque curve to get the pull of the engine, but not enter too much of the powerband, which will increase your fuel consumption.
Also limiting the slipping of the clutch on take-off prevents excess fuel being used. Just get the car on the roll, and start changing up as soon as you can.
The standard combined cycle is listed at 7.1L/100km, and the city cycle is 9.8L/100km. This means that our mostly city route returned a remarkable 20-25% improvement over the cars standard consumption.
All that you need to do is be a bit savvy with your driving, and the reward is immediate.
Combine that with extra fuel-saving measures - checking tyre pressures, keeping the air-con off, making sure windows are up, making sure good quality lubricants and fuel is used, removing the roof-rack, having a clean air-filter and travelling light - and you're going to offset those fuel-price pressures.
And of course, you'll be doing your bit to help the environment. Remember, the less fuel burnt, the less emissions you create.
2008 Peugeot 308 XSE