They say knowledge is power, but in this case, it's greater fuel efficiency. Ford has announced they will be installing SmartGauge with EcoGuide instruments in the Fusion and Mercury Milan hybrids, coming in 2010.
The instrument provides real-time information on the hybrids' fuel economy and allows drivers to select what level of detail they want displayed. These levels are:
- Inform: Fuel level and battery charge status
- Enlighten: Adds electric vehicle mode indicator and tachometer
- Engage: Adds engine output power and battery output power
- Empower: Adds power to wheels, engine pull-up threshold and accessory power consumption
Long-term fuel efficiency is displayed as either a chart or as growing leaves and vines with the leaves and vines becoming thicker as efficiency increases. The gauge also compares current fuel economy with previous trips allowing drivers to make adjustments based on the feedback.
While we all wait for the many hybrid and EV options coming in 2010 and their respective built-in gadgets, there's a new application for the iPhone and iPod Touch that monitors any car's fuel efficiency. The greenMeter weighs the vehicle's tonnage and price of gas against driving style, using the iPhone's built-in accelerometer. The application then turns out real-time information including miles per gallon and carbon footprint.
The success of the application depends upon the driver inputting accurate information on the vehicle, but for only $5.99, it may be worth a little extra effort.
written by shelby, November 18, 2008
written by makenzie, November 18, 2008
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