Fuel efficiency claims questioned

Fuel efficiency claims questioned

Car manufacturers' claims when it comes to how many miles per gallon (mpg) a car can do may be inaccurate in reality, according to new figures.

A test programme by What Car? magazine suggests some vehicles' mpg figure is over a third higher than the figure given by manufacturers. The magazine tested vehicles in 'real world' conditions, making note of their fuel economy.

The worst offender was the popular Ford Fiesta Zeta, which had an mpg figure of 39.7 in the What Car? test. This is some 36.8% lower than the official figure of 62.8mpg given by Ford.

The Alfa Romeo Mito boasts an mpg of 67.2 but in reality tests showed the actual figure was some 36.5% lower at 42.7mpg.

The What Car? tests took in 200 models over a 12-month period. It found the most fuel efficient car was the Seat Leon 5DR SE Ecomotive 1.6 TDI 110, which had a real-world figure of 63.2mpg, which itself is still lower than the manufacturer's official claim of 85.6mpg.

Whatcar.com editor Jim Holder says manufacturers carry out their official tests in a laboratory under very specific conditions that don't reflect real-world driving.

The least fuel-efficient model according to the What Car? test was the Vauxhall VXR8 GTS, with an mpg of 19.5. Despite this low figure, it was actually higher than the official figure of 18.5.

Copyright Press Association 2015