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VW Passat: New distance world record

Mon, 04 Oct 2010

VW Passat World distance Record

When you as old as I am (or at least as old as I feel) you can’t help but be astonished at the feats of economy car makers seem able to wring from even quite serious, upmarket cars.

Yesterday we reported on the Mercedes S250 CDI which manages to perform like a 1990s V8 S-Class whilst simultaneously doing nearly 50mpg. Which to an old git like me – who thought his 3.0 litre Capri in his teen years was doing well if it got 18mpg – is a bit hard to acccept.

And spending the years since my teens in a succession of large-engined cars – all V8s for the last fifteen years – has meant I still see 20mpg as a decent return and anything over 30mpg as downright frugal. So 50mpg from a Mercedes S Class seems impossible. But not as impossible as 90mpg from a big Volkswagen.

But that’s what the Sunday Times has just achieved in a bog-standard VW Passat BlueMotion – well, 89.83mpg – under the auspices of Guinness World Records (cunningly disguised as AA patrolmen) to claim a new world record for the furthest distance travelled in a standard production car on a single tank of fuel – 1,526.63 miles.

The Sunday Times team drove from Maidstone to the South of France and back, finally running out of fuel at Calais on the way back. They covered 1,526.63 miles on 77.25 litres (those figures are as daft as our use of Celsius for hot and Fahrenheit for cold. So let’s use English – 17 gallons, all bar a teaspoon) at an average of 89.83mpg.

It’s true to say they did try hard and managed to stick to the Péage at relatively modest speeds wherever possible. But still, they did a bit of town driving (probably for overnight stops – the run took three days) and they averaged 45mph. Which still makes it an astonishing result.

You’d spend more on food for the fuel to walk it.

By Cars UK