The Ford Fiesta ECOnetic 1.6 TDCi has won the 2012 ALD Automotive/Shell FuelSave MPG Marathon, clocking up 108.78mpg over a 370-mile route involving tough, real-world driving in challenging weather conditions.
Although the Fiesta ECOnetic won the challenge it was not actually the first car to break the 100 mpg mark as that honour went to a team driving a Kia Rio 1.1 CRDi eco which finished the route a few minutes earlier and recorded 102.1 mpg. Third place went to a Peugeot 208 e-HDi with 93.4 mpg.
The annual event is a test of fuel consumption for showroom vehicles, which also demonstrates the financial benefits of simple, smarter driving techniques. This year’s route through the hills of South Wales and the Cotswolds was made more challenging by a bridge collapse and a traffic light failure along the way.
Ford’s winning team, Andrew Marriott and Andy Dawson are both former rally drivers and beat their nearest rival by over six miles per gallon.
The super-frugal Ford Fiesta ECOnetic, which boasts an official combined fuel consumption of 85.6mpg and emissions of 87g per kmCO2, proved that smarter driving can dramatically reduce the cost of running a family car. This year’s run demonstrated a 27 per cent improvement over its official combined fuel consumption figure.
Ford’s ECOnetic technology significantly assists the efficiency of Fiesta and FiestaVan models, by combining Start/Stop technology, combustion and calibration improvements, smart regenerative charging and revised gear ratios among other enhancements.
Event organiser Ross Durkin commented: “This year’s MPG Marathon will be remembered for the two teams who beat the elusive 100mpg barrier – both superb performances. The average improvement over combined cycle figures achieved by the 27 vehicles in this year’s event was a whisker under 16 per cent – impressive by anyone’s standards.
“Manufacturers have done a tremendous job in improving the fuel efficiency of all new cars and vans, but motorists should see their published fuel consumption figures as a target to beat, not the maximum achievable.”