KNOWING YOUR CAR'S FUEL-SAVING FEATURES
Modern cars are lightyears away from what they used to be. With so many features, driving comfort has been elevated and our rides have become so much more efficient – especially when it comes to fuel.
Your driving techniques does play a part, but let’s not forget fuel-saving features that manufacturers have smartly built into our cars. If you’re not yet familiar with them, this article will be a good start.
1. Drive by Wire
If your car comes with Drive by Wire (DbW) technology, it means it has electronically controlled servomotor that activates steering column, power steering pump, brakes, booster, and brake master. The Engine Control Unit, or ECU, processes data sent by sensors connected to the accelerator and the ECU ‘orders’ the motor to work accordingly. This clever feature ensures the mechanics of your car are operating with enhanced precision and minimal energy waste.
2. Eco indicator
Located on your car’s instrument panel, the eco indicator tells you whether you’re driving economically. It is activated when the engine’s torque is stable but not too high at around 1,500 to 3,000 RPM. When activated, it sends signals to the engine’s ECU and BCM (Body Control Module) to save fuel by managing fuel supply, air circulation, and transmission shift. Accelerate gently and smoothly to keep the Eco light on, which means you’re running on around 4% less fuel.
3. Cruise control
Do you often find yourself driving on a relatively empty toll road? If so, try activating Cruise Control feature once you reach at least 40km/hour and make your car more fuel efficient. Typically placed on the steering wheel for easy reach, it allows you to release gas pedal and it takes over to maintain car speed. Enjoy greater fuel saving enabled by your engine’s stable rotation.
4. Auto Start-Stop
This feature has been increasingly common in today’s cars roaming Indonesian roads. It’s main purpose of saving fuel of idling cars – by automatically turning off engine when a car is stationary – is the perfect solution for urban drivers often trapped in traffic. Also known as idle stop, this feature may save fuel between 5 and 14% and reduce gas emission at the same time.
CVT, or Continuously Variable Transmission, can be found in most automatic cars. Claimed to making fuel consumption more economical, CVT uses pulley and steel belt as the car’s transmission system that continuously adjusts with the engine’s rpm – resulting in smooth, seamless gear change. Thanks to this system, an engine doesn’t need to run at high RPM to get power. Lighter engine work makes lighter fuel consumption compared to manual cars.
Now that you know those features and what they do, the next thing for you is to feel the fuel-saving experience. Practice also eco-driving techniques to take fuel efficiency up a notch.