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Old 07-05-2011, 10:43 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Champion hypermiler Gerhard Plattner

After reading about how he got 2006km on a single tank of fuel in a stock (though eco-) Škoda Fabia Greenline I looked for more info on record holding Austrian hypermiler Gerhard Plattner. Just Googling his name is enough to show that he is the recommended driver for any car company which wants to show how fuel efficient its new car is. If a certain model has broken a record or two, then Plattner was probably behind the wheel. Apparently the only mod he uses is higher tire pressure, through he does seem to prefer the eco versions with their slightly better aero. The rest is "just" ecodriving.

Worth noting are his Fuel saving tips, which may not be anything new for us, but are surprisingly extreme for tips aimed at the general public (engine off coasting, for example, or drafting at a distance). One of my favorite tips (which I can vouch for!):
Quote:
On open plain courses you can also use the slipstream of a truck to save fuel. Plattner: "About 30 metres behind the truck a kind of suction is created. Once in the United States I tried this with a Volkswagen Golf. The consumption decreased two litres. Unfortunately this technique is very difficult in Europe, because if you keep a distance of 30 metres somebody will overtake and move into the gap infront of you."
Would anyone care to invite him over?

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e·co·mod·ding: the art of turning vehicles into what they should be

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Piwoslaw's Peugeot 307sw modding thread

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Old 07-05-2011, 11:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
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convert meters to feet
30 M = 98.43 FT

That's 5-6 car lengths which is a recommended minimum highway speed spacing, right?

I would have thought a much closer distance would be optimal, as drafting.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drafting_(aerodynamics)
Quote:
Drafting or slipstreaming is a technique where two vehicles or objects align in a close group reducing the overall effect of drag due to exploiting the lead object's slipstream.
This "suction" he talks about must be something different.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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1,200 miles on a single tank is inspiring. I would be amazed if I could get half that.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Pretty good read.
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Old 07-05-2011, 03:08 PM   #5 (permalink)
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DWL, 68mph, and coasting.

He recommends about 68mph on the highway (110kph). I suppose my civic would be up at about 3000rpm and would probably be in the vicinity of at least 70% load. I wonder about coasting down to 55 and accelerating with load to 68mph (rinse and repeat). Do any of you do this? You would yield an average speed higher than 55 for sure, probably well over 60, and you might reap FE benefits? EOC is a bit dodgy on the freeway. Does anyone do that? I am suggesting neutral coasting, engine on.
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Old 07-05-2011, 04:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by California98Civic View Post
He recommends about 68mph on the highway (110kph). I suppose my civic would be up at about 3000rpm and would probably be in the vicinity of at least 70% load. I wonder about coasting down to 55 and accelerating with load to 68mph (rinse and repeat). Do any of you do this? You would yield an average speed higher than 55 for sure, probably well over 60, and you might reap FE benefits? EOC is a bit dodgy on the freeway. Does anyone do that? I am suggesting neutral coasting, engine on.
I get into sixth and "pulse" to five over, coast (in gear no gas pedal) down to the speed limit and repeat. Once every couple of weeks someone will be next to me and may wonder what the heck I'm doing. I usually just slow a bit so they can pass before they notice my speed is changing.

I used to coast in neutral, but now I coast in gear (I think the fuel cuts off when in gear versus a little fuel is used when in neutral to keep the engine on). I'll turn the engine off and coast in neutral to a stoplight (key to on for lights and steering). 1/3 the time I'll have to bump start to go when I get to the light, 1/3 I'll be sitting for 30 seconds+, 1/3 I'll come to a stop and have to start in less than 10 seconds (that ones the bummer).

Right now I'm pretty close to 30 mpg(combined) with my Vibe GT. Edmunds says 22/28. Before any hypermilling techniques I could get her down to 20 (or less!) I just had a couple of draging brakes fixed so hopefully it'll go up a bit more.
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Old 07-06-2011, 03:38 AM   #7 (permalink)
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@Cali98Civic: What surprised me was recommending that the engine speed should be in the 2k-3k rpm range without adding that this is for a petrol engine. This is still highish, I read that the range should be more like 1500-2500rpm, while a diesel should stay below 2k rpm. As for the high speed (110 km/h), I try keep 80-100 km/h on the highway, but this may not suite everyone. He's trying to get to the general public, so 110 instead of the 120-150 that most people are doing is easier to get through than recommending 90. Also, when he does his eco-runs he may be aiming for a relatively high average speed, and bumping it up on the highway allows him to go slower in traffic, which probably works for him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mnmarcus View Post
I get into sixth and "pulse" to five over, coast (in gear no gas pedal) down to the speed limit and repeat. Once every couple of weeks someone will be next to me and may wonder what the heck I'm doing. I usually just slow a bit so they can pass before they notice my speed is changing.

I used to coast in neutral, but now I coast in gear (I think the fuel cuts off when in gear versus a little fuel is used when in neutral to keep the engine on).
You're not coasting in gear as much as you are engine braking. In 6th it may not be noticeable, but the drag is there. Coasting in gear works well when you have to keep your speed under control while going downhill, but on the flats you should be coasting in N. If you engine off coast then you get the best of both worlds. I believe that someone here has tested that the extra coasting distance in neutral more than makes up for the fuel used to idle the engine.
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e·co·mod·ding: the art of turning vehicles into what they should be

What matters is where you're going, not how fast.

"... we humans tend to screw up everything that's good enough as it is...or everything that we're attracted to, we love to go and defile it." - Chris Cornell

Piwoslaw's Peugeot 307sw modding thread

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Old 07-06-2011, 08:20 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piwoslaw View Post
He's trying to get to the general public, so 110 instead of the 120-150 that most people are doing is easier to get through than recommending 90.
You must be right. I tried what I described on a 10 mile freeway run I had to drive last night. I jogged from 55-65mph, and I scored significantly higher ave MPG than cruising at 55. I got 53.5mpg for the freeway portion, while cruising 55 would normally offer an average about 51 or 50. My ave speed must have been better (forgot to track it). I would not win contests or become a "champion" with this technique. But it is a bit better for sure.
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See my car's mod & maintenance thread and my electric bicycle's thread for ongoing projects. I will rebuild Black and Green over decades as parts die, until it becomes a different car of roughly the same shape and color. My minimum fuel economy goal is 55 mpg while averaging posted speed limits. I generally top 60 mpg. See also my Honda manual transmission specs thread.

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Old 07-06-2011, 09:01 AM   #9 (permalink)
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"If possible you should step on the gas on the steep counter-hillside. And then, when you are driving uphill, don't change the position of the gas throttle anymore; even if you slow down a bit. Accelerating when driving uphill really wastes a lot of fuel! One of the reasons why it is very important to think ahead when driving."
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Old 07-06-2011, 09:23 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
A car consumes the least at the highest gear with around 2000 to 3000 rpm, explains fuel saving record driver Gerhard Plattner:
Does this mean I get to drive everywhere between 70 and 110? I don't think that counts as safe with 3 tons and less than sporty brakes

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