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EcoMode Software Teaches Green Driving Tips

EcoMode Software Teaches Green Driving Tips

New Ford Focus drivers will be able to take advantage of a new in-car software application that monitors the impact of their behavior on fuel economy and then offers up simple hints on how to improve eco-driving skills through a fun scoring system.

EcoMode is a handy software application that coaches customers in the art of eco-driving – and then rewards those that practice more fuel-efficient driving skills with in-car kudos displayed on the instrument cluster.

“The foot of the driver has one of the biggest impacts on real-world fuel economy of a vehicle and was the starting point for the development of EcoMode,” said Thomas Schick, an engineer with the Ford of Germany Core Vehicle Integration team who helped design the software. “This is a useful tool that creates awareness between personal behavior and fuel consumption and offers up hints on how to improve. Applying those hints and recommendations is all up to the driver.”

Eco-friendly driving habits include:

  • Using the highest drivable gear
  • Smooth accelerations and decelerations
  • Maintaining constant speeds and anticipating traffic flow
  • Using cruise control on the highway
  • Avoiding excessive idling
  • Avoiding short trips with a cold engine

During a drive, the scoring system generates hints on how to gain more leaves for each discipline. A driver looking at the advice screen for Anticipation, for example, may see the hint “Smooth driving saves fuel” displayed on the cluster if he or she is accelerating, decelerating or braking unnecessarily.  In Gear Shifting, driver advice might include “Early shifting saves fuel,” if the driver is not shifting up as early as possible in conjunction with their acceleration.

Focus drivers can review their generated score against the software’s optimized patterns for each of these disciplines. Scores are displayed using an easy-to-follow five-leaf icon, with two leaves set as the default and five leaves being the maximum achievable score.

What do you think about this new feature? Do you think it would really help you be a more efficient driver, or is it just a distraction? Share your thoughts in a comment!

Also Check Out:
15 Easy Ways to Save Gas
Ten Most Dangerous Foods To Eat While Driving
8 Ways To Green Your Ride
Which Cars Are The Greenest?

Image Credit: automotive-fleet.com

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Beth Buczynski

Beth is a freelance writer and editor living in the Rocky Mountain West. So far, Beth has lived in or near three major U.S. mountain ranges, and is passionate about protecting the important ecosystems they represent. Follow Beth on Twitter as @ecosphericblog or check out her blog.

17 comments

+ add your own
1:39AM PDT on Sep 19, 2011

Thanks for sharing.

4:43AM PDT on May 11, 2011

Thanks for the article.

4:12PM PDT on May 9, 2011

Good to know, although it'shard to implement some of these when one lives in a traffic congested concrete jungle. Very useful to remember though.

3:51PM PST on Mar 10, 2011

OKAY!

2:40PM PST on Feb 22, 2011

I think this could be the start of something big.

Just link the software to the net and run it as the "most eco-friendly driver of the week" contest. The prize? how about a tank of fuel and your name in lights on the website?

With an international link for best in the world?

It may even get F100 drivers thinking about economy!

2:58PM PST on Feb 21, 2011

Thanks. difficult to use in city.

8:48PM PST on Feb 6, 2011

thanks

3:12AM PST on Feb 3, 2011

geen roken nichtmuziek

7:09PM PST on Feb 2, 2011

Or better yet, if you life in big enough a city, take public transit and follow the ancient GreyHound Bus slogan of "Leave the driving to us."

9:02AM PST on Feb 2, 2011

Computer won't run well in freeze temp...

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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