VW Vindication: 2009 Jetta TDI Averages 58.8 MPG

September 29, 2008
Record-breaking couple John and Helen Taylor just added a new Guinness world fuel economy record to their impressive list of 36. Their new record is for average fuel economy while driving across the 48 contiguous United States, which they achieved by averaging 58.8 mpg in an '09 Volkswagen Jetta TDI. This is huge news for Volkswagen, who were disappointed by the U.S. EPA's official rating of 30/41 mpg. An independent testing agency, AMCI, ranked the Jetta at 38/44 mpg.

The couple drove a stock clean diesel Jetta TDI, completing the 9,419-mile journey in 20 days on Shell Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel Fuel. The previous record was 51.58 mpg, which the Taylors blew past by 14 percent. Their driving included stints during rush hour and over diverse terrain, and the couple saw mileage exceeding 60 mpg on "several legs" of their journey. They spent a total of $653 on fuel, averaging 6.9 cents per mile.

Far from secretive technology or driving at a snail's pace, the Taylors employed FuelStretch techniques that they developed jointly with Shell Oil. Driving economically is a way of life for the Taylors; they've been earning world records for 26 years, and this record marks their 37th world fuel economy world record. They also conduct workshops around the world on fuel-efficient driving techniques.

Via their Web site, the Taylors share experiences from their journey. For more information and reports, visit www.fuelacademy.com.--Colin Mathews

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