- 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
The Fusion Hybrid 1,000-Mile Challenge started at
The challenge team, which included NASCAR star
"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
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.
- 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
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
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.