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Grip : GRIP October 2011
ECONOMY RUN GRIP libertY imPresses in eConomY run IT wasn’t quite the classic tortoise versus hare race. After all, the two machines at the start line for the journey from the MCG to the SCG were identical - Liberty 2.5is with CVT. But one was to be driven by rally ace Dean Herridge, the other by one of Australia’s fuel economy run experts, Bob Hudson. Both had the same job brief for the day – drive the 903 kilometres to the SCG on one tank of fuel. Sure, you can drive ‘cer tain’ modern production cars from Melbourne to Sydney on one tank... if you cruise at 90km/h, and accelerate like there’s fresh eggs under your foot. But what if you’re Dean Herridge, who likes to press the pedal hard on occasions and sit a little closer to the speed limit? Bob’s aim was to drive practically for fuel economy, yet not dawdle along. The rules were simple: no slipstreaming, no speeding, no slow-coaching and a compulsory half hour rest stop every two hours. This is not about the driver... it’s about the fuel-efficient Liber ty 2.5i with CVT. But right from the start Dean took off harder than Bob. “Dean accelerates harder than I would if I was worried about fuel economy. It’s not about being slow: if your goal is to use as little fuel as possible then it’s about smooth driving. “Obviously there’s a few things you can do to help improve the already amazing fuel economy of the Liberty, and indeed any car. Keeping it well serviced is maybe the simplest. “Keep tyres at the right pressure and with decent tread to reduce rolling friction.” By the time they hit the Hume Highway, Dean is out in front, sitting on 110 km/h while Bob settles for 100. “The most he can gain on me is 10 kilometres in an hour which is six minutes in real time... I don’t see the benefit,” Bob said. Dean was not concerned with his strategy. “I left Bob behind some time ago, and that’s the point of this really. In the Liberty you don’t have to worry about conserving fuel to make this run.” And so our hare and tortoise went on, and on. The hare made it first in this case, but did he win the race? Not quite in terms of fuel used – his car used 63.8 litres compared to Bob’s 61.6 litres. But at $1.50 a litre, Dean’s fuel bill was $3.30 more. But he got there 53 minutes earlier – not a bad price to pay for a rally driver. And he proved that even in operating normally, the Liberty 2.5i with CVT is a highly efficient car – MCG to SCG on a tank. THE RESULTS Liber ty 2.5i Melbourne to Sydney Both cars: One tank. (65 litre capacity) Driving time: Dean 9 hours 21 minutes, Bob 10 hours 14 minutes Fuel used: Dean 63.8 litres, Bob 61.6 litres Fuel Economy: Dean 7.1l/100km, Bob 6.8 l/100km INSIDE GRIP HOME PAGE AFTERSALES MARKETING ECONOMY RUN PARTS & ACCESSORIES FINANCE AMBASSADOR NEW PRODUCT BRAND COMPARISON DEALER RANKINGS SPORT
GRIP September 2011