With modern advances in fuel delivery, and computer-controlled turbo diesel engines, 4WD fuel efficiency figures have slowly been becoming more palatable for those without blank check books to pay for their expeditions. We are going to go over 6 ways for you to enhance your fuel efficiency on long journeys away! MINIMISE EXCESS WEIGHT [ […]
When packing your vehicle it is important to remember that the heavier your vehicle is, the more energy you will need to use to keep it rolling. By packing less gear more efficiently and towards the middle of your vehicles wheelbase and lower towards the vehicles center of gravity you will minimize uneven stress on the suspension components of your 4WD meaning it will handles smoother, this results in an easier ride, and burning less fuel.
A set of Titan Rear Drawers help you to locate your bulky heavy gear lower down, and also freeing up internal cabin space for safer and better visibility which makes decision making much easier on the open road, because you give yourself more time to react to hazards ahead and slower vehicles that you may be approaching which can make you lose momentum for climbing up those bigger hills.
STOP START IS THE BIGGEST ENEMY!
Whilst driving on any road in any car, regular stop start driving wastes a ridiculous amount of fuel, and in our personal experience a fully loaded 4WD being driven in bumper to bumper traffic DOUBLED…. That’s right doubled, its fuel consumption from nearly 11L/100Km to just over 22L/100Km.
There are dozens of tricks to making sure that you don’t burn this much fuel specially when travelling past and out of the city!
To avoid stop starting from taking its toll on your wallet, take off extremely slowly, and change gears early if you are driving an auto, simply holding minimal accelerator will allow the gearbox to upshift early without ‘winding out’ your revs through the gear range. Using the engines low end torque and not bringing your turbo into boost will save you many litres of fuel at the bowsers.
Just because the car in front is zipping off the lights and slamming their brakes on at every traffic blockage doesn’t mean you have to as well.
Stick to the slow lane and drive it like a semi! This way you’ll always give yourself plenty of stopping distance to slow down in your own time and you will always conserve fuel being able to coast towards the red light ahead, instead of racing the car next to you right up to the stop!
SMOOTH IS FAST!
The old saying ‘smooth is fast’ also applies for efficiency, smooth driving is efficient driving.
One of the best ways to avoid being erratic on the road is by giving yourself plenty of stopping distance and trying to maintain a steady pace.
The more erratic and agitated your driving is the more resistance your vehicle is likely to be encountering, making its job of cruising, much harder. Play some relaxed tunes on the radio and take your time making maneuvers in traffic and it will go a long way into getting you better numbers at the bowser.
Many modern 4WD’s handle just like cars, and with excellent handling characteristics, people automatically drive them as if their 2.5 ton 4WD is a micro-sized European designed hatchback, resulting in horrible fuel economy. Drive your vehicle like it is a fully loaded truck, and you will be rewarded with much smaller fuel bills than you are accustomed too!
WELL OILED MACHINE
When your vehicle encounters mechanical resistance you are burning excess fuel that you don’t need too. There are several things you can do to make sure your vehicle is not costing you stacks of hard earned.
Things like making sure that your vehicle is running the right tyre pressures is an excellent place to start, by using a compressor like the Thumper MKII to keep your tyres inflated to the right pressures, you will have a smoother drive, put less wear and tear on steering and suspension components and also reduce the rolling resistance of your tyres.
A set of new tyres every 2 or 3 years will also ensure that you are taking advantage of modern tread patterns, in the last 5-10 years Mud terrain tyres have increased in road handling and are much quieter than their dinosaur ancestors you used to hear coming down the road, but All terrains and highway terrains are still king at getting the best fuel economy figures.
Before any longer trip and every six months or so, you should get a good wheel alignment, this will make sure your front and back wheels are sitting square and riding true to the chassis, reducing any drag that the system might have and making your steering more responsive.
Don’t forget to check your wheel bearings, cv joints, and maintain your engine, gearbox and transfer case oils to make sure you aren’t wasting a drop of fuel.
There are few better ways to reduce your fuel bill, than by maintaining your momentum, if you have to keep adjusting your speed, you will be wasting fuel. It’s a good idea to keep your RPM lower, and cruise, with bigger vehicles a good cruising speed will allow you to make it up the hills on the freeway, and coast back down again without the need to floor it and rev your motor up.
Simply by reducing your speed by 10 or 20 km/h, and cruising at around 90km/h instead of 100km/h and 110km/h, you can make massive savings to your fuel bill, you will find that by cruising at a slightly slower speed the frantic pace of the freeway no longer agitates you and you will gain plenty more stopping distance for smoother and easier driving all the way to and from your destination!
PLAN YOUR ROUTE
By planning your path ahead you can make sure there are no dramatic swerves to get to an offramp, or any unnecessary detours that can take you well off the beaten path, by using a VMS Touring 700 HDX GPS unit you can navigate easily to your destination without any silly wrong turns or time-consuming detours.