Honda set a new Guinness World Record for the lowest fuel consumption in a car by driving across the 24 contiguous countries of the European Union (EU). The new record posted by Honda now stands at an average of 2.82 liters per 100 kilometers over 13,498 kms in a 25-day drive across all 24 EU contiguous countries.
Behind the wheel of a Honda Civic Tourer 1.6 i-DTEC for the entire journey were two members of Honda’s European Research and Development (R&D) team, Fergal McGrath and Julian Warren, who took on the challenge to demonstrate the impressive real-world fuel economy of the Civic Tourer.
The remarkable distance traveled is similar to the team driving to Australia from their home in the United Kingdom, stopping just nine times to refuel. The car achieved an incredible average 1,500 kms on each tank of fuel, at a total fuel cost for the whole journey of just 645 euros.
The team set out on their epic road trip from Aalst, Belgium on June 1, navigating the continent in a clockwise direction. They returned to their start point on June 25, recording the incredible fuel economy figures that exceed the Tourer’s quoted efficiency of 3.8 liters per 100 kms by more than 25 percent.
The official Guinness World Record title is “Lowest Fuel Consumption – all 24 contiguous EU countries,” measured in liters per 100 kms calculated over the entire journey.
Under the rules, the same two drivers must be in the car for the whole journey, giving Fergal and Julian, Honda R&D colleagues of some 18 years and based in the UK, the challenge of driving an average of approximately 600 kms, taking around 7.5 hours each day.
Based on strict and rigorous guidelines, the Guinness World Record title attempt required the car to enter each of the 24 countries specified, collecting a range of evidence including a fuel/mileage logbook, GPS readings, video and photographs and independent witness signatures to prove that it has done so. To ensure accurate monitoring of the route, journey time and distance driven, the record car was fitted with a tracking device, provided by fleet telematics and stolen vehicle recovery expert, Tracker (part of the Tantalum Corporation).
Under the rules of the record title attempt, the car must be a standard model in every respect, with no modifications to create an advantage, to replicate “real world” conditions. This was judged by independent witnesses at the beginning and end of the attempt. Fueling was carried out at regular filling stations, with the tank filled to the maximum at each stop to ensure no weight advantage. Additionally, tires were inflated to the recommended pressures and the wheel alignment set to factory specification to represent the experience of the regular customer.
The team, both amateur drivers, were also keen to show that through adopting some simple but very effective driving techniques, anybody could achieve such remarkable fuel economy. They simply used some very logical methods including careful and sensible route planning, driving smoothly and consistently without harsh acceleration or braking, anticipating the road conditions ahead, carrying no unnecessary weight, and ensuring that the car was correctly maintained at all times. Driving speed was always within the law and keeping up with traffic conditions.