Vehicle Efficiency: How do we measure this
Vehicles that display fuel efficiency run with lower carbon-emitting fuels that are pivotal in meeting both climate and energy security. Additionally, improved aerodynamics in vehicles, materials and drive train efficiency, among other qualities, influence a vehicle’s coherence. Technological growth continues steadily in the automotive industry, improving vehicle efficiency as new energy sources are developed.
Owner of Branigans Tyres, and renowned Australian tyre recycling specialist, Chris Lett discusses vehicle efficiency, what it is, and how it can be measured to ensure environmental preservation.
“Vehicle efficiency is measured holistically and takes into account the vehicle’s design and performance, and how that directly influences it’s on-road capabilities,” says Lett. “More notably, driving behaviour also impacts fuel consumption, which ultimately leads to greater efficiency. Smooth acceleration and deceleration, gear-changing at higher speeds, idle reduction and removing clunky accessories that weigh down the vehicle support improved efficiency,” Lett adds.
Idle reduction is important as it heavily influences vehicle and fuel efficiency. “The longer a vehicle is left to idle, the more fuel is wasted, additionally posing a health risk to people, both in and around the vehicle. Idling also reduces a vehicle’s fuel economy, costing the owner money to recuperate that lost fuel. Luckily, diesel engines are mostly calibrated to optimum performance at travelling speeds, combusting fuel less efficiently when idling,” says Lett.
There are many vehicle and fuel efficiency techniques that promote vehicle efficiency. “The most notable techniques are: an integrated starter/generator, variable valve timing and lift, continuous variable transmission, and direct fuel injection,” says Lett.
An Integrated starter/generator allows engines to shut down and immediately restart for short stops (e.g. at a red traffic light), rather that idling at the light. Variable timing and lift enables the intake and exhaust valves to react according to the engine speed, which supports improved fuel economy and emissions. Continuous variable transmission limits the revolutions per minute (rpm) for any speed, reducing vehicle fuel consumption. Direct fuel injection is when fuel is injected directly into the cylinder barrel, allowing more efficient combustion than when fuel and air are mixed outside of the cylinder.
Accompanying these, are a few aerodynamic and weight reduction techniques that support improved efficiency. Lighter materials like carbon fibres and lighter metals allow manufacturers to reduce vehicle weight and promote engine efficiency. Vortex generators are small, triangular shaped roof mounted devices in front of the rear window. Properly shaped, sized and positioned vortex generators reduce drag by causing air flow along the rear windshield and boot lid. Lastly, and very importantly are wheels. “Thinner, smaller wheels and low rolling resistant tyres reduce road friction and air drag, thus increasing fuel efficiency. Concave rims that are fully closed are much more dynamic than open rims,” says Lett.
Understanding vehicle efficiency does not need to be a tedious experience. It can be practical and beneficial if one takes the time to best understand their vehicle. Researching professional vehicle efficiency methods can benefit a vehicle’s performance in the long run.
At Branigans Tyres, Chris Lett and his team ‘go green’ and are experts in the recycled tyre business. Branigans Tyres has well-established workshops in Burleigh Heads and Southport in the Gold Coast region. Check out their full range of services or current featured promotions. Branigans award-winning affordable tyre subscriptions package start at $7.97 and help motorists budget for their ongoing tyre needs.
Vehicle owners are encouraged to drive in at their convenience as no pre-bookings or appointments are required. Branches are situated at 13 Flagstone Drive, Burleigh Heads, contact number (07) 5535 2660 or 1/277 Southport-Nerang Rd, Southport contact number, (07) 5591 8633.
Written and Syndicated by: YDMA News