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mpg Tournament

Score points for economical driving.
  (+4, -1)
(+4, -1)
  [vote for,

This idea is aimed at yuppie junior-management/reps/tossers who tend to drive BMWs and are pathalogically competitive, mostly because their competitive spirit (or irksomeness) is what I'm attempting to harness. This would also be most effective for the gamer generation who are already strongly attuned to finding point-scoring rewarding.

It's rather difficult to encourage people to drive in a more economical manner, not least because it's usually very boring. Part of the problem is that the only direct reward for doing so, saving money on fuel, is deferred and easily forgotten behind the wheel. My proposal gives the driver an instantaneous reward for economical driving by means of them scoring points according to their mpg. The most obvious way to do this would be to add the second-by-second mpg (like you can get from the trip computer on many modern cars) to their score as this would give a half decent approximation of the total fuel consumption for a trip. That system does leave a question mark over how the score should change whilst the car is stationary with the engine idling, perhaps an arbitrary amount should be deducted from the score, determined by the amount of fuel the engine consumes at idle.

Of course, the most accurate way to score the system would be to derive an mpg for the entire trip (I think this is already available on some cars) but that would rob the driver of the instant gratification of watching their score tot up faster as they ease off the accelerator. At the end of a trip drivers can then compare scores with each other and gloat or whinge accordingly, or see who can score the most points on a particular route.

squigbobble, Apr 29 2005

Perhaps, if there were some sort of competition... Somewhere for people to race cars that used as little fossile fuel energy as possible... http://www.americansolarchallenge.org/
If only... [ato_de, May 02 2005]

Best fuel economy gets the most points... http://www.drivingt...-10-20-2529-racing/
I've heard that winning the Indy 500 is pretty cool... [ato_de, May 02 2005]

(?) Michelin Challenge Bibendum http://www.automobi...ibendum/index1.html
//Of course, the performance test was nominally an evaluation of fuel economy, requiring the competing vehicles to negotiate 100 miles of the road circuit at Sears Point at an average speed of 45 mph.// [ato_de, May 02 2005]

Smart tipping http://www.autoblog...ry/1234000150041513
Beware your "cool" car doesn't fall prey to pranksters. [Acme, May 02 2005]

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       Too bad we can't make the smallness of a car appear 'cool' like cell phones.
RayfordSteele, Apr 29 2005

       Yes, I get your point [ato_de], but until someone invents a means of measuring light by volume I'm afraid that one can't have an mpg Tournament with a solar powered car. Besides, the whole point of it is to allow people to compete in an unstructured fashion using normal road vehicles that can actually keep up with motorway traffic, the intention being to get them to change their driving habits as opposed to changing their vehicle to an offcut from a boatyard with some bicycle wheels underneath it.
squigbobble, May 02 2005

       MPG-4 is the most economical.
Mr Burns, May 02 2005

       Not to me.   

       Come to think of it, how long would it take until this game is played in reverse, with people competing to run up the *highest* MPG on a route?
jutta, May 02 2005

       I think the US car industry has baked that one pretty well...
squigbobble, May 02 2005

       //Too bad we can't make the smallness of a car appear 'cool' like cell phones.// Bullshit.   

       In Europe and Asia small cars are cool. Alfa 147, Ford Puma, Audi TT, various Peugeots, Citroens and Renaults. Hell even a Vauxhall/Opel Astra is quite a cool car. The Japs have been making extremely funky little cars for their own market for years. Obviously most of these models are not available in North America because there seems to be a long held belief that quality = quantity.   

       Big does not mean beautiful.   

       All a matter of opinion of course.
Emi-chan, May 02 2005


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