Can Google help save petrol, diesel? New feature promises fuel-efficient drive

Worried about burning more fuel in traffic? Google may have a solution that can help commuters save more fuel though a new update available on Google Maps. With petrol and diesel prices remaining as high as they are, this new trick could be a boon for those driving around frequently. This new feature, currently available across select countries, is expected to be launched for Indian users too. The feature update will help to pick alternative routes to save on precious petrol and diesel. The fuel-efficient drive feature is also applicable on hybrid and electric vehicles.

Google has introduced a new feature on its navigation app Google Maps that offers option for drivers to select route options that can help save fuel.

Google Maps now offer a choice to select preferred fuel-efficient routes when someone plans a trip. The feature, which offers alternate routes for fuel-efficient drive, can be accessed through the setting of the app. Google had introduced the feature in countries like United States, Canada as well as European nations.

The new Google Maps feature allows one to select the engine type of the vehicle in use. It then calculates the best possible route for the vehicle to offer energy efficiency. According to Google, “If this feature is turned on, Maps uses fuel or energy-efficiency on top of other factors like real-time traffic and road conditions to choose the best route.” Once turned on, this feature will offer an alternate route to the existing quickest route option. However, there is a twist. This feature does not include stops to refuel or recharge an electric vehicle.

Activating the fuel-efficient route option is easy. One can open the Google Maps app on smartphone to make the necessary changes. If the update is available at the location of the user, one can tap on the profile icon on top right corner to go to settings. The next step is to go to navigation settings under which one will be able to find Route Options. There are options one needs to activate. The first one is to choose eco-friendly routing by tapping Prefer fuel-efficient routes. The second step is to choose the engine type.

The app will identify vehicles that run on gas (referred to petrol in India), diesel, hybrid and EVs. If this step is skipped, the app will pick petrol as the default engine and offer alternative fuel-efficient routes.

Google says that it collects data from the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the European Environment Agency. The data is then collated and processed to calculate fuel-efficiency, which includes factors like average fuel consumption for vehicles in that region, steepness of inclines in case of hilly terrain, stop-and-go traffic patterns as well as types of roads.

First Published Date: 15 Dec 2023, 13:23 PM IST

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