How to improve economy and minimise pollutionHow to improve economy and minimise pollution  - Your vehicle and the environment - Driving tips - Audi A4 Owner's Manual - Audi A4

Fuel economy, environmental impact and wear on the engine, brakes and tyres depend largely on the way you drive the vehicle. By adopting an economical driving style and anticipating the traffic situation ahead, you can reduce fuel consumption by 10-15%. The following section gives you some tips on lessening the impact on the environment and reducing your operating costs at the same time.

Anticipate well in advance

A car uses most fuel when accelerating. If you anticipate hazards and speed changes well in advance, you will need to brake less and thus accelerate less. Wherever possible, let the car slow down gradually with a gear engaged, for instance when you can see that the next traffic lights are red. This takes advantage of the engine braking effect, reducing wear on the brakes and tyres. Emissions and fuel consumption will drop to zero due to the overrun fuel cutoff.

Change gear early to save fuel

An effective way of saving fuel is to change up quickly through the gears. Running the engine at high rpm in the lower gears uses an unnecessary amount of fuel.

Manual gearbox: Shift up to second gear as soon as possible. If possible, we recommend shifting up to the next gear at approx. 2,000 rpm.

Automatic gearbox: Press the accelerator slowly and avoid using the Уkick-downФ feature.

Avoid driving at high speed

Avoid travelling at top speed. Fuel consumption, exhaust emissions and noise levels all increase very rapidly at higher speeds. Driving at moderate speeds will help to save fuel.

Do not let the engine idle for longer than necessary

It is worthwhile switching off the engine when waiting in a traffic jam, at level crossings or at traffic lights with a long red phase. The fuel saved after only 30 - 40 seconds is greater than the amount of fuel needed to restart the engine.

The engine takes a very long time to warm up when it is running at idling speed. Mechanical wear and pollutant emissions are also especially high during this initial warm-up phase. It is therefore best to drive off immediately after starting the engine. Avoid running the engine at high speed.

Regular servicing

Regular servicing can establish a basis for good fuel economy before you start driving. A well-serviced engine gives you the benefit of improved fuel efficiency as well as maximum reliability and an enhanced resale value. A badly tuned engine can consume up to ten percent more fuel than necessary.

Avoid short trips

The engine and emission control system need to reach their proper working temperature in order to minimise fuel consumption and emissions.

A cold engine uses disproportionately more fuel. The engine only reaches its working temperature after about four kilometres, when fuel consumption will return to a normal level. This is the reason why we recommend avoiding short trips wherever possible.

Maintain the correct tyre pressures

Always make sure the tyres are inflated to the correct pressures to save fuel. If the tyre pressures are just 0.5 bar too low, this can increase the fuel consumption by as much as 5 %. Due to the greater rolling resistance, under-inflation also increases tyre wear and impairs handling.

Do not use winter tyres all through the year; they will increase fuel consumption by up to 10 %.

Avoid carrying unnecessary loads

Every kilo of extra weight will increase the fuel consumption, so it is worth checking the luggage compartment occasionally to make sure that no unnecessary loads are being transported.

A roof carrier is often left in place for the sake of convenience, even when it is no longer needed. At a speed of 100-120 km/h your car will use about 12 % more fuel as a result of the extra wind resistance caused by the roof carrier - even when it is empty.

Save electrical energy

The engine drives the alternator to generate electricity. This means that fuel consumption rises when more power is required for electrical equipment. Switch off electrical equipment when it is not needed. Electrical equipment which uses a lot of electricity includes the blower (at a high setting), the rear window heating and the seat heating*.