No matter how carefully I drive I can’t achieve the published miles per gallon



Who should we blame when our car achieves less than the advertised miles per gallon, the manufacturer, the dealership that supplied the car or the contract hire company that published the official mpg figures in their advertisement? We as a car leasing company are frequently contacted by clients who say that their car is doing significantly less miles per gallon than was advertised on our car leasing website.

On our website we do display the published mpg, along with other information relating to a particular contract hire car but we can only display the official figures. Where the blame lies, is where the blame lies for so much of that which is wrong today, European regulation.

Official fuel consumption figures have to be obtained by carrying out a series of tests known as the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) which should in theory represent typical usage but of course as with most of what comes out of Brussels, it doesn’t work.

 The tests that ultimately result in in the published official miles per gallon figure have to be conducted under laboratory conditions but of course we don’t drive our cars under laboratory conditions; if it’s hot we put the air conditioning on and sometimes we have it on when it is not hot. We also drive with the windows open and carry too much weight in the boot; all things that reduce our mpg. 

Then of course there is the way we drive, which is not usually how vehicles are driven when they are in test conditions. Many motorists do a lot of heavy accelerating and braking which can have a dramatic effect on fuel consumption, as does having the tyres incorrectly inflated.

The fact is however carefully you drive you are unlikely to get anywhere near  the NEDC figures, there will still probably be something like 20% difference between the official figures and what you can achieve.  



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