- Drivers trained in mileage-maximizing techniques achieve 1,445
miles on a single tank of gas in a 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid - averaging
81.5 mpg in Washington, D.C. - and set world record for gasoline-powered, midsize sedan
WASHINGTON --- Drivers trained in mileage-maximizing
techniques such as smooth acceleration and coasting to red lights were
able to get an extraordinary 1,445.7 miles out of a single tank of gas
during a fund-raising effort in Washington, D.C.
that concluded Wednesday. According to Ford, they did it by averaging 81.5 miles per gallon in
an off-the-showroom floor, non-modified 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid, the
most fuel-efficient midsize car in North America - nearly doubling its U.S. certified mileage.
The Fusion Hybrid 1,000-Mile Challenge started at 8:15 a.m. EDT on Saturday, April 25, from Mount Vernon, Va., and ended this morning at 5:37 a.m. on George Washington Parkway in Washington, D.C.
After more than 69 continuous hours of driving, the Fusion Hybrid
finally depleted its tank and came to a stop with an odometer reading
of 1,445.7 miles - setting a world record for gasoline-powered, midsize
The challenge team, which included NASCAR star Carl Edwards, high mileage trailblazer Wayne Gerdes and several Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) engineers, raised more than $8,000
for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) by exceeding the
goal of 1,000 miles on a single tank of gas. The Fusion Hybrid's
official estimated range is approximately 700 miles per tank.
"Not only does this demonstrate the Fusion Hybrid's fuel efficiency,
it also shows that driving technique is one of the keys to maximizing
its potential," said Nancy Gioia, director, Ford
Sustainable Mobility Technologies and Hybrid Vehicle Programs. "The
fact that we were able raise much needed funds for JDRF while raising
the bar on fuel efficient driving performance made the effort doubly
A team of seven drivers prepared for the challenge by learning a few
mileage-maximizing techniques, most of which can be used in any vehicle
to improve fuel economy, but are especially useful in the Fusion Hybrid
where the driver can take advantage of pure electric energy at speeds
below 47 mph.
CleanMPG.com founder Wayne Gerdes, an engineer from Illinois who coined the term "hypermiling" to describe the mileage-maximizing techniques, provided the pointers. They 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;
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
You become very aware of your driving because you're constantly
looking for opportunities to maximize mileage, and a more aware driver
is a safer driver, too," said Gil Portalatin, Ford hybrid applications manager.
In addition, it is important for Fusion Hybrid drivers to manage the
battery system's state of charge through the use of regenerative
braking and coasting, and balancing the use of the electric motor and
gas engine in city driving to avoid wasting fuel.
Fusion Hybrid drivers also can stay more connected to the hybrid
driving experience with Ford's SmartGauge(TM) with EcoGuide, a unique
instrument cluster that helps coach drivers on how to optimize
performance of their hybrid.