Drivers in the first-ever WLTP Challenge are now off the starting blocks, highlighting the efficiency and safety gains that fleets stand to make from smarter driving of the right vehicles.
The spiritual successor to the long-standing and hugely successful MPG Marathon, the WLTP Challenge will show how the new WLTP cycle figures can be met and even exceeded in real-world driving situations.
Mirroring the day of a typical business driver out and about, competitors will take to the roads in a variety of vehicles – from conventional petrols and diesels to hybrids and EVs, including cars, vans and pick-ups – to test them around 250 miles of everyday routes around the Midlands, with a few pit stops en route.
The results will show what the vehicles are capable of in real-world driving, on real UK roads, underscoring how route optimisation and appropriate vehicle choices can lead to everything from safer fleets to lower fuel, insurance and tax bills.
Drivers have already undergone licence checking by Chevin Fleet Solutions, one of the event partners, and are now embarking on their journeys in vehicles featuring decals by Vehicle Livery Solutions. Driver locations can now be viewed through the live feed supplied by event partner Airmax Remote.
Other event partners include IAM RoadSmart, which has supplied eco coaching to some of the drivers to show how its training can help achieve significant, measurable improvements in efficiency.
Meanwhile the RAC is adjudicating and has provided approval for the vehicles to be ready for the driving challenge, with members of its specialist fuel patrol deployed over the course of the event to ensure all competitors have started the day with their tanks brimmed. Competitors will also be given the chance to see latest RAC innovations at its Bescot HQ, which is the location for the lunch stop.
Established MPG Marathon supporter ALD Automotive has also provided extensive event support for the WLTP Challenge, with competitors starting and finishing at its head office in Emersons Green, Bristol. As with Chevin, ALD will also have a team of drivers competing in the event, as both firms look to further their knowledge of real-world conventional and alternative powertrain testing to bring added support for their customers.
Results will be in the November issue of Fleet World as well as on the Fleet World and WLTP Challenge websites but in the meantime, the Airmax Remote live feed will provide insight into drivers’ real-time whereabouts or follow updates on the WLTP Challenge Twitter feed.