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What Car? Develops True MPG Test Process With Millbrook

By Maddy Price
Wednesday, August 10, 2016 - 15:09

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Whatcar.com’s acclaimed True MPG real-world fuel economy tool will be using a new measurement system with support from leading automotive technology test centre, Millbrook.

Starting this month, the True MPG test process will be conducted by Millbrook’s experts in a test laboratory and to a real-world route mapped out by Whatcar.com’s reviews team.

The test process has undergone robust benchmarking with Millbrook to make sure that the resulting data, accessed by more than two million visitors to the What Car? website every month, is fully reflective of real-world figures and much more realistic than the official fuel economy figures quoted by car manufacturers.

Importantly, the strictly controlled conditions under which the tests are conducted – modelled on a real route driven by the What Car? team that takes in town, rural and motorway roads – ensure repeatability within 1% for all CO2 emissions and fuel economy work.

All data produced by the new process will be wholly owned by Whatcar.com and will continue to be a vital part of the suite of consumer-friendly tools offered by the UK’s biggest car-buying brand.

What Car? editor, Steve Huntingford, said: “Our True MPG figures represent what you can typically expect from a car if you’re driving it gently and sticking to speed limits but without any unrealistically slow acceleration or special ‘hypermiling’ techniques.

“We’ve taken a real-world route and real-world driving style and put them in the lab to avoid any of the unwanted variables that on-road driving throws up. As a result, we believe we have the very best of both worlds with this new system.”

The True MPG tests will be carried out under a rigorous set of criteria – air-con or climate control is always set to 21 degrees during the test and cars being tested are stored overnight at a set 23 degrees so that all cars start with exactly the same engine temperature and in the same ambient air temperature.

Tailpipe emissions (CO2, NOx, CO and HC) are sampled on a second-by-second basis and collected for fuel economy calculations to be made.

To find out more information about True MPG, or discover what your car’s true fuel economy figures are, visit: http://www.whatcar.com/truempg/my-true-mpg/.

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