Since mid-summer, I’ve been the proud owner of a Peugeot 306 (as seen here). It was a used car (1994) and an affordable buy. Like all older cars, the fuel economy is not up to par with recent cars, but it’s not terrible either.
Since I only got my drivers license some three months prior to getting the car, I’ve been trying to learn to drive ecologically / economically. I do not drive much, I only use the car for longer trips (parents, weekend getaways, IKEA). In the process I have picked up a few tricks which I’d like to bounce off of you, esteemed reader and/or more experienced driver than me.
- Drive in high gears
- Sometimes, skip a gear
Freewheel whenever you can
If you see a red light ahead, if you’re going downhill, if you’re stuck in traffic, freewheel as much as possible.
- When driving on the highway/autobahn/motorway, remember that your most efficient speed is often below the speed limit (I believe the average value for most efficient speed is 55MPH in the highest gear). (Thanks Jonathan)
- Don’t carry superfluous weight. (Thanks Jonathan)
- Don’t use an unloaded roof-rack or anything else that will introduce unnecessary drag. (Thanks Jonathan)
- If your car has air-conditioning, only use it when you absolutely must. (Thanks Jonathan)
- Learn the road and the stoplights
Switch to 4th a little earlier than you normally would.
Switch from 2nd to 4th, or in better cars than mine, from 1st to 3rd. But be careful and skip to a gear that makes sense for specific type of situation.
Know when to accelerate and know when not to, so you don’t have to break / accelerate all the time.
What did I miss? Which of these would annoy you, were you driving behind me? Which of these would be dangerous?