Driving Smart: Unveiling Fuel-Saving Myths to Ease the Burden of Rising Costs

Driving Smart: Unveiling Fuel-Saving Myths to Ease the Burden of Rising Costs banner

As the cost of living continues to rise, every dollar saved becomes crucial in navigating the economic challenges we face. One area where savings can be significant is in fuel consumption. To debunk common myths and uncover the most effective ways to make every litre count, we conducted a series of tests at the VinFast proving ground in Lang Lang, Victoria. Our vehicle of choice was the Toyota HiLux GR Sport ute powered by Ampol diesel. Let's delve into the results and explore practical strategies for maximizing fuel efficiency.

Test Setup

Our control test involved driving the Toyota HiLux in its default drive mode, with tires at placarded pressures and the air-conditioning set to Auto at 23 degrees in the cabin. The tests were conducted on the high-speed bowl at the VinFast Proving Ground for repeatability.

  1. Changing Drive Modes: Many modern cars feature various drive modes such as Eco, Normal, and Sport, each affecting throttle mapping. We aimed to determine if these modes had a tangible impact on fuel consumption.SpeedControl (Normal Mode)Eco ModePower Mode60km/h4.9L/100km5.2L/100km5.2L/100km100km/h8.1L/100km8.4L/100km8.4L/100km
  2. Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Windows: We examined the influence of air-conditioning, heating, and window usage on fuel consumption to determine the most fuel-efficient approach.SpeedControlDriver’s window downAll windows downAir-con on max coldHeater on max hot60km/h4.9L/100km5.3L/100km4.9L/100km5.5L/100km5.2L/100km100km/h8.1L/100km8.6L/100km8.5L/100km8.6L/100km8.3L/100km
  3. Tyre Pressures: Correct tyre pressures are vital for safety and fuel efficiency. Our tests explored the impact of under- or over-inflated tyres on fuel consumption.SpeedControl (placard pressures)20PSI42PSI60km/h4.9L/100km5.9L/100km5.0L/100km100km/h8.1L/100km8.9L/100km8.8L/100km
  4. Adding Weight: We investigated how added weight affects fuel economy by loading the HiLux with a 500kg load in the tray.SpeedControl500kg load60km/h4.9L/100km5.6L/100km100km/h8.1L/100km8.6L/100km

Our comprehensive tests reveal that small adjustments to driving habits and vehicle conditions can indeed impact fuel consumption. While some myths were dispelled, such as the negligible effect of drive modes, others were reaffirmed, emphasizing the importance of proper tyre pressures and minimizing added weight. As we navigate the challenges of a rising cost of living, adopting smart driving practices can make a tangible difference in our overall expenses.

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