Learn how to cut your fuel bills through better driving with Ford.
JOIN FORD'S GREEN DRIVING CHALLENGE - WE HAVE.
FORD has released details of how drivers can enter a green driving challenge to find the one with the lightest right foot and learn skills that can save them a fortune in fuel bills - and www.localmotoring.com will be taking part.
The car maker has teamed up with the Energy Saving Trust to run a series of regional heats in which drivers will undergo a three-part test. The first is to assess their current driving to gauge their eco-skills, measuring mpg and CO2. This will be followed by tuition to improve their skills before the third element sees how much they have learnt by re-doing the first part, with the (hopefully) improvements being expressed as a theoretical annual saving.
The Energy Trust reckons that by learning to look and plan ahead, avoiding unnecessary slowing and the wasteful acceleration, even an average driver can cut their fuel bills and CO2 footprint by 15 per cent with a skilled one seeing a 25 per cent cut.
Heats will be at Murrayfield Stadium, in Scotland, on July 5; then Longleat, Wilts, July 12; Blue Reef Aquarium, Tynemouth, July 19; London International Motor Show, ExCel, from July 22; Knowsley Park, Merseyside, August 9; and West Midlands Safari Park, Worcs, August 16.
To enter call 0845 600 6500 or go to www.ford.co.uk/smartdriving (by Jun 9).
John Swift, of www.localmotoring.com, has entered the contest and will be bringing regular updates on green driving skills.
Each regional winner will be rewarded with the loan of a 1.6-litre Ford Focus ECOnetic - with the option of a tour of Ford's wind-powered Dagenham Diesel Centre where the car's ultra low CO2 engine is produced.
The overall winner will receive a home 'eco makeover' addressing energy efficiency to deliver lower utility bills (value £10,000).
What is eco driving?
● Change up through the gears at between 2,000 and 2,500 rpm
● Ease your speed. Driving at 70mph uses around 15 per cent more fuel than at 50mph
● Anticipate to avoid unnecessary acceleration and braking
● Use auxiliary equipment selectively, eg air conditioning
● Switch off the engine whenever safe to do so
● Check and adjust tyre pressures regularly, according to load and speed driven
● Remove unnecessary cargo from the car to reduce weight
● Reduce aerodynamic drag whenever possible, eg close windows or remove roof racks
What are the benefits?
• Reduced fuel consumption
• Lower fuel bills
• Less CO2 emissions
• Lower accident rates as a result of improved anticipation