Fuel Efficiency – What You Need to Know

Fuel efficiency is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing a vehicle. However, as experts from the MIT School of Engineering and HowStuffWorks explain, mpg ratings don’t paint a complete picture.


The best way to understand fuel economy is by looking at a vehicle’s power ratings and types.

Lighter Vehicles

The lower a vehicle’s weight, the less energy it needs to move. The amount of power needed to push the vehicle depends on its mass and acceleration capability, with higher levels of both reducing fuel efficiency (see Figure 2.1).

Automakers are putting some of their best-selling models on a diet in a bid to meet new fuel economy standards that will come into effect in the next decade. Ford, for example, has replaced some of the steel in its F-150 pickup with aluminum in a bid to cut hundreds of kilograms from the model. 인천운전연수

Lighter vehicles can accelerate much faster than their heavier counterparts and also tend to have better safety ratings. However, they can be dangerous in a collision with larger vehicles because they cannot change direction as quickly, and their braking distances are longer than those of lighter cars.

Automakers are also using lightweight materials to help them meet strict fuel-efficiency requirements without compromising safety or performance. For example, they may use plastic or composite materials to replace parts made from heavy steel. They are also making a concerted effort to reduce the amount of air in their vehicles’ cabins, which can reduce engine output and increase fuel efficiency.

Aerodynamic 인천운전연수 Body Shape

The shape of a vehicle can have an enormous effect on its fuel efficiency, and it’s surprisingly easy for designers to make their vehicles more aerodynamic. The most efficient shapes are teardrops, which have a drag coefficient of 0.04. The best production cars are often shaped to minimise protrusions, and have smooth bodywork that guides airflow through the vehicle’s cabin.

A good example of this is the Volkswagen XL1, which was produced for a very short time in 2013. It is still one of the most aerodynamic production cars on the market, with a low drag coefficient of 0.24Cd. Its streamlined appearance, however, meant it could only accommodate two occupants, who were required to sit behind each other.

The most important factor is to minimize the separation of flow at any part of the car’s profile, as this leads to a difference in pressure between the upstream and downstream sides. This difference in pressure, known as wake, is not desirable and can increase the car’s drag considerably. The front of the vehicle is particularly important in this respect.

It is essential to keep the size of the radiator and cooling system, as well as the grille, down to a minimum. These are necessary for engine cooling and passenger comfort but should be sized to fit the shape of the vehicle, minimizing the impact on its aerodynamics.

Choosing the Right Vehicle

Choosing the right vehicle for the job is important because some vehicles have different specifications, which can increase the cost of fuel or decrease it depending on how they are used. In addition, some vehicles require more maintenance than others, which can add up to significant costs over time. Considering important factors like vehicle use, road conditions, and driver safety and comfort can help you determine the best option for your business. For example, if you have to drive in snow or travel on poorly-maintained dirt roads, a fuel efficient sedan may be the wrong choice. You might be better off with a truck or van instead. EVs are also becoming an increasingly attractive option, and they can offer huge savings on operating costs over the long term.


Getting regular maintenance done saves money on repairs and increases fuel efficiency by making sure that all systems are running properly. In fact, a vehicle that is in poor condition can use up to 4% more gas than a properly maintained one. This means checking the air filter, using the correct type of oil for your vehicle and a fuel system service that removes deposits from the throttle and injectors to allow for proper flow and improved performance.

Other areas of maintenance that affect fuel efficiency are tire pressure, wheel alignment and driving habits. For example, keeping your tires inflated to the recommended PSI reduces rolling resistance that causes your engine to work harder and use more fuel. Also, using the recommended type of fuel for your vehicle and driving at a steady speed helps reduce consumption.

Another area of maintenance that improves fuel efficiency is a tune up for your vehicle’s spark plugs, oxygen sensors and other components. Taking your vehicle to a trusted mechanic to have these services performed can decrease emissions and increase fuel efficiency. This is especially important if your vehicle has failed an emissions test or shows signs of poor fuel efficiency. The technicians at Dave Gill Chevrolet can inspect your vehicle’s internal combustion engine to make sure it is using fuel correctly and reducing pollution.