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Couple to Drive NZ on One Tank of Petrol

Record-Breaking Couple to Drive NZ on One Tank of Petrol

A couple trying to set a Guinness World Record for fuel efficient driving by driving around the world in 40 fill-ups or less, will attempt to drive from Christchurch to Auckland in using one tank of petrol this week.

Expert drivers John and Helen Taylor set off from London on January 17 and have driven through 14 European countries, Pakistan, India, Asia, South East Asia and Australia on a new Shell petrol formulation. They are now about to embark on the New Zealand leg of their journey and have only used 12 tanks of petrol.

“We’ve covered a great distance and encountered all kinds of conditions, while managing some impressive fuel consumption feats such as travelling 1,223 km on only 50 litres of fuel, less than one tank, while driving through the Alps,” John says.

The Taylors will drive from Christchurch to Auckland on Tuesday and Wednesday, following State Highway 1 through the country.

On Tuesday March 7 the Taylors will depart from Cathedral Square at 6am following a powhiri from Ngai Tahu who will gift the couple a pounamu (greenstone) pendant each in the shape of a shell.

The Taylors will catch the 1.15pm Interislander Ferry from Picton arriving in Wellington at 4.15pm. They will then make their way to Levin where they will stay the night.

On Wednesday March 8 the Taylors will depart Levin at 6am and head for Auckland, arriving at the Tom Pearce Drive Shell Station (near Auckland Airport) at around 3pm. Dignitaries will be at the station to welcome the Taylors and congratulate them on completing the New Zealand leg.

Using Shell’s latest fuel economy formula and following their fuel efficiency driving tips, the Taylors are averaging close to 21.2 km per litre.

To achieve fuel economy statistics like this when faced with such difficult terrain and climate is quite an achievement. The team have been stuck in Milanese traffic for three hours and have driven through sleet, snow and winds on the mountain roads of Eastern Europe and Greece.

An innovative new Shell petrol formula designed to give drivers improved fuel economy is fuelling the Taylor’s Guinness World Record attempt. The fuel, still in the development phase further, is being put to the ultimate road test on this challenge, and Shell will use the results to develop the formula.

Shell New Zealand Retail Manager Rob Mahoney is interested to hear how the Taylors find New Zealand roads and driving conditions. “We’re happy to be fuelling the Taylors around the world for the Guinness Record, and this challenge is a great way to put the new Shell formulation to the test,” he says.

After departing New Zealand the Taylors will drive across the United States, and then return to London for the official finish at Waterloo Place, where they left off on January 17 – the same place the legendary Phileas Fogg began his fictional journey “Around the World in 80 Days.”

If you would like to see daily statistics on mileage and fuel consumption along the Taylors’ journey, will provide the most up-to-date information, as well as daily blogs by the Taylors and crew, photographs, highlights and tips on fuel efficiency.


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