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Shell Launches its Fuel Economy Formula in NZ

Shell Launches its Fuel Economy Formula
in New Zealand

Improved Petrol Uses Technology Based on
Guinness World Record-Making Fuel

Wellington, Monday 1 May 2006 - Literally days after achieving the Guinness World Record, using a fuel based on the same technology Shell will launch its improved Shell Ultra 91 and Ultra Hi 95 petrols with Fuel Economy Formula to drivers in New Zealand.

The improved Shell petrols with Fuel Economy Formula are based on the same fuel technology that was vital to the success of John and Helen Taylors’ Guinness World Record for fuel efficiency. The Shell Fuel Economy Formula is designed to help improve engine efficiency and is being offered in both Shell maingrade petrols at no extra cost. The improved formula is part of Shell’s ongoing commitment to help its customers get the most out of their fuel, an effort that started with the development of fuel efficient driving practices shared by Shell under the name of FuelStretch driving tips.

The Shell Fuel Economy Formula is a result of a long-term research programme by Shell, dedicated to discovering and designing products to take motorists further. The Fuel Economy Formula is designed to promote engine cleanliness and friction reduction for improved engine efficiency.

Rob Mahoney, Shell’s Retail General Manager says, “We believe that Shell Ultra 91 and Ultra Hi 95 with the Fuel Economy Formula will be welcomed by New Zealand motorists who are concerned about increasing motoring costs. Through a combination of vehicle maintenance, improved driving styles and choosing the right fuel, we’ve shown customers can make a real difference to their own mileage figures.”

These improved fuels are based on the same technology found in the fuel which was the driving force behind the incredible success of the Shell Fuel Economy World Record Challenge - a mission by couple John and Helen Taylor to set a Guinness World Record for fuel efficiency on a drive around the world. This technology combined with Shell’s FuelStretch driving tips, allowed the Taylors to successfully circumnavigate 28,970kms/ 18,000 miles around the globe in only 24 fill-ups - achieving an average of 22.2 km per litre/62.7 miles per gallon (Imp), and surpassing all expectations of how well the fuel would perform. The Taylors used a standard car - a VW Golf FSI1.6 - breaking the manufacturer’s official consumption figures of 14.3 km per litre/40 miles per gallon (imp) by 55%.

“Shell is proud to offer this improved formulation to customers, helping to increase fuel efficiency and reduce motoring costs,” adds Rob Mahoney. “In the same way the Taylors set a new Guinness World Record for fuel efficiency we hope everyday drivers in New Zealand will be pleased with the results and set their own personal records for better fuel economy.”

The Taylors are planning to return to New Zealand in late May to share their record-breaking experience and demonstrate to motorists how they can also achieve fuel efficiency.

- ENDS -
Royal Dutch Shell plc is incorporated in England and Wales, has its headquarters in The Hague and is listed on the London, Amsterdam, and New York stock exchanges. Shell companies have operations in more than 145 countries with businesses including oil and gas exploration and production; production and marketing of Liquefied Natural Gas and Gas to Liquids; manufacturing, marketing and shipping of oil products and chemicals and renewable energy projects including wind and solar power. For further information, visit

Shell FuelStretch Tips

The Taylors’ Guinness World Record achievement for fuel efficiency proves that combining good driving practices with the right fuel can make a big difference in taking you further for less.

The journey tested fuel efficient/Fuel Stretch driving practices shared by Shell to help motorists cut costs, and also revealed new tips based on the diverse terrain covered by the Taylors over the course of their journey. Below are the top fuel efficient techniques that can help motorists around the world go further and cut costs, with feedback from the Taylors:

1. Drive smoothly - Aggressive driving can use as much as a third more fuel than safe driving*. Avoid accelerating or braking too hard and try to keep your steering as smooth as possible.

Taylors: “This was strongly demonstrated in the US, Australia, and New Zealand, where the roads facilitated smooth driving, and consequently, the mileage and fuel results were superb.”

2. Use higher gears - The higher gear you drive in the lower your engine speed is, which can improve fuel efficiency. So change up a gear whenever you can, without labouring the engine.

Taylors: “This was particularly relevant in Pakistan where so much of the motoring could be stop-start.”

3. Tune and service your engine - A well tuned engine can improve fuel economy by up to 4%**, so change your oil and follow your car manufacturer’s recommendation on servicing.

Taylors: “This was practiced throughout our journey - we ensured that the car was serviced regularly.”

4. Keep your tyres at the right pressure – Correctly inflated tyres are safer and last longer. A tyre that is under inflated by just 1psi can reduce fuel efficiency by as much as 3%**. An under or over inflated tyre is also more susceptible to failing.

5. Avoid carrying excess weight – For every extra 100 lbs (45 kg) you carry your fuel efficiency can drop by 1-2%*. So keep your boot or back seat clear of unnecessary items that just add weight to your vehicle.

Taylors: “At one point, a member of the crew needed to travel with us in the car and that impacted fuel usage for that leg of the trip due to the extra weight.”

6. Keep the windows closed - Wind blowing through an open window will slow you down. To compensate, you may accelerate, using more fuel.

Taylors: “In Australia – where the temperature hit 46C/ 114F, we had to make a decision between opening the windows and air-conditioning, which uses more energy, so we drove with open windows.”

7. Remove the roof rack - If you’re not using your roof rack, then remove it. They affect the aerodynamic efficiency of vehicles and create drag, reducing fuel economy by as much as 5%*.

8. Use the correct oil - Always use the recommended grade of motor oil. Using the manufacturer’s recommended lubricant can improve fuel efficiency by 1-2%**. Higher quality motor oils can help your engine operate more efficiently.

Taylors: “When our car was serviced, we always made sure the oil was changed as a matter of course.”

9. Fuel Matters – All fuels are not created equal. Fuel economy is maximised in the engine through a combination of good driving habits and using the right fuel…one that helps reduce friction and improve cleanliness in the engine, thereby improving fuel efficiency. The Taylors have chosen Shell fuel to power their Guinness World Record attempt as a result of their own personal tests of several commercially-available fuels and their belief in Shell’s product quality.

10. Use cruise control - Using cruise control on major roads helps you maintain a constant speed and, in many cases, will improve fuel consumption.

11. Avoid excess idling - Idling gets you nowhere but still burns fuel. Turn the engine off when you’re in a queue, or waiting for someone, until you need it.

Taylors: “This was especially relevant in Pakistan, New Zealand, and Los Angeles where traffic conditions and roadworks held us up.”

12. Plan trips carefully - Cutting down on the time spent in the car is the easiest way to conserve fuel. To reduce driving time, combine all your short trips and errands into a single journey.

Taylors: “We tried to do this from the beginning of our journey.”

13. Avoid over revving - Change gears prudently when you’re accelerating. Never ‘redline’ the rev counter.

14. Keep your distance - Leave a sensible distance between yourself and the car ahead to give you ample time to brake evenly.

15. Avoid high speeds - The faster you go, the more wind resistance you’ll encounter and the more fuel your vehicle will consume just to maintain speed. Driving just 5mph over the speed limit can affect fuel economy by up to 23%***.

Taylors: “We kept a level speed for as long as possible (with the occasional hill getting in the way).”

16. Use air conditioning sparingly – Air conditioning puts added strain on the engine and uses fuel to operate, so limit use to particularly hot or cold days. When possible use the fan instead.

17. Check the air filters - Air filters keep impurities from damaging your engine. Replacing a clogged air filter can improve fuel economy by as much as 10%** and will help protect your engine.

18. Avoid rush hour - If you can travel outside of peak times, you’ll spend less time stuck in traffic and consume less fuel as a result.

19. Conserve momentum - Instead of coasting when you reach a downward slope, maintain steady engine revs. This will mean you pick up speed, and if you've then got a hill to climb, it gives you considerable added momentum to help go up it, energy efficiently.

Taylors: “This was crucial in hilly/mountainous areas in Austria, Switzerland, India (where we rose to around 12,000 ft at one point), Malaysia and New Zealand. If we hadn’t done this in these countries, the figures would have been affected substantially.”

20. Check the seal on your fuel cap is airtight – Fuel evaporates every time you open the fuel cap. To stop this, make larger fill-ups as opposed to repeatedly topping up your tank.

Taylors: “This was especially true for the Taylors when refueling in Australia (temperatures of 46C/ 114F) and some of the hotter countries.”

21. Keep calm – When you’re not calm, you’re more likely to make errors of judgment. Fuel efficiency is all about smoothness, and keeping calm is absolutely crucial to achieve fuel economy.

Taylors: “This is something that we’ve always applied, though this trip tested it to the limit.”

22. Headwinds - When you're faced with a headwind, the engine has to work much harder to cover the same distance because of drag. The only thing to do is to moderate your speed to ensure that the engine doesn't end up labouring too hard.

Taylors: “In both Australia and the latter stages of the New Zealand leg, we encountered really strong headwinds, so this was an especially important tip to bear in mind – speed was sacrificed for economy.”

*Estimates for fuel savings from sensible driving are based on studies and literature reviews performed by Energy and Environmental Analysis, Inc., Washington, DC.

**Estimates for fuel savings from vehicle maintenance, keeping tyres properly inflated, and using the recommended grade of motor oil are based on studies and literature reviews performed by Energy and Environmental Analysis, Inc., Washington, DC. Assumes fuel price of $3.07 per gallon.

***Estimates for the effect of speed on MPG are based on a study by West, B.H., R.N. McGill, J.W. Hodgson, S.S. Sluder, and D.E. Smith, Development and Verification of Light-Duty Modal Emissions and Fuel Consumption Values for Traffic Models, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, March 1999. Assumes fuel price of $3.07 cpg.


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