The results obtained with regard to efficiency shed light on savings in fuel consumption and the reduction of the emission of CO2 to the environment. It is important to consider that most of the registered journeys are short, of between 5 and 10 kms, meaning that the savings may at first glance seem small if they are not observed on a suitable scale. Asturias has just over a million inhabitants (according to data of INE of 2010), a relatively low number when compared with the 47 million inhabitants of Spain as a whole. Of the million residents of the Principality it is calculated that 15,000 travel daily to the Knowledge Mile, 1% of which are represented in the sample of ecomile.
The methodology used for this study is based on two uses of the mobile application, referred to as Assistant and Black box. The first is a simple control panel on the mobile telephone which gives advice in real time on how to drive more efficiently through visual and acoustic messages about gear change or how to adapt the speed to maintain the green efficiency indicator. The second is a silent and discreet mode which merely gathers driving data.
In order to be able to measure the level of improvement in the driving of the users during the project, the drivers were requested to undertake a series of routes (approximately 10 journeys) using the Black box mode with the purpose of discovering their real driving habits before beginning to use the Assistant mode. After one week they were asked to switch to the Assistant mode and to follow the indications of the application. In this way, the results that are detailed below were obtained.
A total of 26,600 kilometres were covered by the sample of the efficiency study. During the period that the drivers used the application in Black box mode, a mean consumption of 6.5 litres per 100km and an average emission of 16.6 kg of CO2 per 100km was registered. After changing to Assistant mode consumption was reduced by 0.6 l/100km, almost 10% less, reaching 5.9 litres per 100km. With regard to gas emissions, 1.29 Kg/100km was reduced, which represents a reduction of 7.7%, the emission now being 15.31 kg of CO2 per 100km
In general terms a saving of 142 litres of fuel took place, which considering the variability of the price of fuel represents a saving of approximately 205.00 €. With regard to the global saving in CO2 emissions, the total is situated in 356.47 kg per 100Km.
As previously explained, this is a pilot study with a reduced sample of users but if the results were extrapolated to greater areas such as the whole city (Gijon) or the Central zone of the Principality of Asturias, these results would be exponentially more significant. By way of an example, if the saving considered for the sample (150) is extrapolated to the total number of cars used in the city of Gijon, calculated at 114,979 private vehicles in the last official census of 2010 and if it were considered that a third of these adopted the guidelines of efficiency of ecomile during the same period of time as the study of ecomile and supposing conservatively that they drove as few kilometres as the users of ecomile, there would be an approximate saving of 134,120 litres (193,623€) and reductions in the CO2 emissions of 331,699 kgs.
A reduction in the consumption can be observed from 13 January, date on which the use of the recommendation systems began (Assistant mode). The consumptions vary, but this depends on the percentage of urban and nonurban journeys which make the values oscillate slightly.
The reason for the reduction of the last few days has already been commented, in that the users with the worst index of efficiency stopped using the system leading to low consumption.
It is important to emphasize that not all vehicles allow to calculate consumption (despite appearing on the on-board computer of the vehicle, the OBD-II port of some vehicles did not provide the parameters that the calculation of consumption algorithms of Cated Box need). For that reason the number of analyzed users does not represent the total number of the sample.
It is possible to observe how Cated index rises sharply when changing from Black box mode to Assistant mode (13 of January). Over the next few weeks the Cated index improves slightly, showing that the users slowly adjusted to the recommendations of the system. In the last few days of the study a rise of Cated index can be observed. This, however, is not due to an improvement in driving efficiency but rather to the fact that, as commented previously, some users observed that they could not win the ecochallenge and so stopped using the system. The abandonment of these users with indices of lower efficiency generates a statistical effect that makes the average of Cated index rise.
The results observed in the graph of Cated index, differentiated by journeys type, are more or less the same as in the general graph. As previously mentioned, the techniques of efficient driving are easier to carry out in interurban journeys than in urban journeys, for which reason the index of the former is clearly better.
It must be pointed out that on 3 of February a reversal in the indices of efficient driving took place leading to the urban drivers obtaining better results. This was because that day (as can be seen in the graph of urban and interurban journeys) the urban journeys suffered a drastic fall, while the interurban increased simultaneously.
Below can be seen the evolution of the efficiency metrics that comprise the Cated Index (defined previously in this document). In general it is possible to observe that they follow the same tendency as the CatedIndex global metric.