You have to hand it to Ford: they're not sitting on their thumbs during this whole economic disco inferno mishegas. (Well, not much.) Their PR team is working overtime, trying to make sure everyone knows that Ford's doing fine, and Ford didn't take any bailout money, and Ford's just a humble American automaker, doing its best to make an honest living.
In service of a couple of those goals, the company's "Ford Fusion Hybrid team" has set a lofty goal: to drive the 2010 Ford Fusion 1,000 miles on a single tank of gas. The team says they've been able to average 70mpg using "Eco-Driving techniques", which is far better than the 59mpg they need to average to pull off the publicity stunt. Of course, they also have the advantage of seeing the Fusion's in-dash Eco-Guide system. Here's a little of both, for your viewing pleasure:
The mileage-maximizing techniques that the Ford team will use and pass on to consumers include:
- Slowing down and maintaining even throttle pressure;
- Gradually accelerating and smoothly braking;
- Maintaining a safe distance between vehicles and anticipating traffic conditions;
- Coasting up to red lights and stop signs to avoid fuel waste and brake wear;
- Minimize use of heater and air conditioning to reduce the load on the engine;
- Close windows at high speeds to reduce aerodynamic drag;
- Applying the "Pulse and Glide" technique while maintaining the flow of traffic;
- Minimize excessive engine workload by using the vehicle's kinetic forward motion to climb hills, and use downhill momentum to build speed; and
- Avoiding bumps and potholes that can reduce momentum
And for anyone interested in seeing the stunt in person, the drive begins on Saturday, April 25, in Mount Vernon, Virginia and ends on Monday, April 27. Where? Why, in Washington, D.C., of course.