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Barclaycard Fuel+ announces sponsorship of 2015 MPG Marathon

By Kyle Linsay
Wednesday, August 12, 2015 - 09:00

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mpg marathon

The UK’s most prestigious eco-driving event, the MPG Marathon, which challenges drivers to complete a 300-mile course under normal driving conditions using as little fuel as possible, is being sponsored for the first time by Barclaycard Fuel+ in association with TMC.

This year’s event, which is in its 15th year, takes place on Tuesday, September 29 and Wednesday, September 30 and is now open for entries. It will set off from the stunning Heythrop Park Hotel and the Heythrop Park Resort near Enstone in Oxfordshire over a two-day, 300-mile plus route and includes a number of alternative as well as conventionally powered vehicles.

John Bostock, Account Development Director at Barclaycard, which has pioneered Barclaycard Fuel+, said: “Good driving techniques while operating a well-maintained vehicle can lead to lower fuel consumption and significantly cut the cost of motoring.

“In fact, our research shows that eco-unfriendly driving costs UK motorists £700 million a year. And with the number of vehicles on the road continuing to increase, consumers and fleet owners stand to make huge savings by driving in a more eco-friendly way.

“We’re passionate about helping motorists to become more aware of the environmental and financial impact of eco-friendly driving. Sponsoring the 2015 MPG is one way of increasing awareness of these issues and we’re very much looking forward to being involved in this year’s event.”

Event organiser, Jerry Ramsdale, publishing director of Fleet World, said: “We are delighted that Barclaycard Fuel+ in association with TMC has extended their relationship with us by sponsoring  this year’s MPG Marathon as well as the Fleet Show at Silverstone.

“This year’s Marathon will again demonstrate how both vehicle and driver can make a massive difference to fuel costs and emissions and just how effectively that cost can be managed by achieving exceptional fuel consumption.”

“Entries are now open and we are already seeing a lot of interest in this year’s event,” added Ramsdale.

Co-sponsored by ALD Automotive, the RAC and TRACKER, this year’s MPG Marathon allows competitors to find the most efficient route between set checkpoints, reprising the approach that was first introduced two years ago.

In previous years, the MPG Marathon has attracted celebrities, motoring journalists, academics and senior figures from the automotive industry, all striving to see if they could complete the chosen route using as little fuel as possible.

It is also open to fleet managers, representatives from fleet services, contract hire and leasing and fleet management companies, and from the motor industry, plus anyone associated with it.

Entrants will find that the bar has again been set very high.  Last year’s overall champions were Honda engineers Fergal McGrath and James Warren, who recorded an outstanding 97.92mpg driving a Honda Civic Tourer.

At the same time, Ford motor racing stars Louise Richardson and Harrison Scott received the prize for achieving the best improvement over a manufacturers’ official fuel consumption figure.

Behind the wheel of a new Ford Fiesta ST-3 1.6 litre 182ps EcoBoost model, the pair achieved an astonishing 75.77mpg, over 58% better than the official figures.

Last year’s line-up also included the first entrants in a growing category of electric vehicles, competing to use as little energy as possible while covering the same distance as their petrol and diesel counterparts.

Category winners Jerry Clist and co-driver Peter Thompson’s performance in a Nissan LEAF equated to an astonishing 249mpg in a comparable diesel car, at a cost of just 2.6p per mile.

Electric and hybrid vehicle classes will again be included in this year’s event, and they will be joining the more familiar diesel and petrol engined cars and vans that traditionally take part in the event.

There are eight main classes of passenger cars in this year’s MPG Marathon, restricted to a maximum carbon ceiling of 190g/km, as follows:

Class 1: Passenger cars powered by petrol with CO2 emissions of 99g/km or less

Class 2: Passenger cars powered by petrol with CO2 emissions of 100g/km or more

Class 3: Passenger cars powered by diesel with CO2 emissions of 99g/km or less

Class 4: Passenger cars powered by diesel with CO2 emissions of 100g/km or more

Class 5: Passenger cars powered by hybrid drive systems

Class 6: Passenger cars powered by plug-in hybrid drive systems

Class 7: Passenger cars powered by range-extender hybrid drive systems

Class 8:  Fully electric vehicles.

There are also five classes of light commercial vehicles, which will not have a carbon ceiling but are determined by Gross Vehicle Weight, as follows:

Class 9 Light vans and car-derived vans – GVW of less than 2001kg

Class 10: Small vans – GVW between 2001kg and 2600kg

Class 11: Medium vans – GVW between 2601kg and 2800kg

Class 12: Medium vans – GVW between 2801kg and 3499kg

Class 13: Large Vans – GVW of 3500kg

For more details of the MPG Marathon please phone 01727 739160, or visit the event website at http://www.thempgmarathon.co.uk/

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