Some good news for diesel cars! The Peugeot 1.6-litre BlueHDi 75 Active 5-door hatchback has taken overall victory in this year’s MPG Marathon, achieving average fuel economy of 104.5mpg in real-world driving conditions over 385 miles.
Not only was it the highest MPG figure of any car taking part in the event, but was also the ‘Best Percentage Improvement’ with a 29% improvement over official (EU Directive 80/1268/EEC) Combined Drive Cycle economy figures.
The Peugeot 1.6-litre BlueHDi 75 Active 5-door hatchback has an official Combined Drive Cycle fuel economy figure of 80.7mpg. The vehicle that won the two-day event was a brand new car, with only a few miles on the clock, driven by former Peugeot Sport UK Manager Mick Linford and part-time rally navigator Jemma Champion.
MPG Marathon drivers Linford and Champion finished just ahead of motoring journalist John Kerswill and co-driver, Ian McKean, who recorded an equally impressive 103.42mpg in a Mazda 2 1.5litre 105ps Sport Nav diesel.
They in turn were only just ahead of third placed drivers, John Kendall, editor of International Fleet World, and Paul Nieuwenhuis of Cardiff Business School, who recorded 103.28mpg in a Citroen C4 Cactus Feel Blue HDi 100.
Alongside the competition for the best outright MPG, the Marathon also challenged drivers to improve on the manufacturers’ official fuel consumption figures for their vehicle.
Claiming first place in this category were Paul Clifton, the BBC’s transport correspondent for southern England, and former police inspector, Shaun Cronin. Behind the wheel of a Honda CR-V 1.6 i-DTEC SE (2WD), they recorded 84.34mpg, a 31.37% improvement over the manufacturer’s stated figures.
In second place in this category were the overall winners Linford and Champion, whose outstanding performance was 29.49% better than the manufacturers’ official fuel consumption figures for their vehicle.
And in third place in this section was last year’s overall winner, Honda engineer Fergal McGrath who, with co-driver Rick Rowles in a Honda Civic Tourer 1.6 i-DTEC, achieved a highly impressive 90.46mpg, 24.94% better than the manufacturers’ figures.
Special mention must be made of the event’s two youngest-ever entrants, Eloise Peabody-Rolf and Rory Carmichael, both just 17. Driving a Honda Civic 1.6 i-DTEC SE, they recorded a highly creditable overall mpg of 93.81 at their first attempt – and only weeks after passing their driving tests.
An even more fuel-efficient Peugeot 208 is being introduced into the UK line-up in October with the Diesel 1.6-litre BlueHDi 75 with Stop & Start technology that has Combined Drive Cycle fuel economy of 94.2mpg.
Providing standardised new car fuel economy and emissions figures is a requirement imposed on all car manufacturers by the EU Directive 80/1268/EEC. Peugeot has the lowest Corporate Average Fuel Emissions (CAFE) of any volume manufacturer. While the current CAFE across all brands is 124g/km, the Peugeot range average is just 106.3g/km.
Earlier this year, a Peugeot 208 fitted with the new 1.6-litre BlueHDi 100 engine and Stop & Start technology set a new long-distance fuel consumption record. Staged at Peugeot’s test circuit at Belchamp, France, and strictly supervised by independent adjudicators, the car averaged just over 141mpg. While this was a demonstration of optimised capability, the MPG Marathon result is probably all the more significant, given it has been achieved in real-world driving conditions.