Call for switch to mpl

Fuel gauge in mpg and mpl
7 Mar, 2012 1:17pm Julie Sinclair

Poll by the AA and Auto Express reveals many motorists want to switch from mpg to mpl to make it easier to work out fuel costs

One in three motorists would prefer their car’s fuel economy figures to be measured in miles-per-litre rather than gallons, an AA Populus poll conducted in conjunction with Auto Express has revealed.

Of 21,450 drivers surveyed, more than 7,000 voted to ditch the traditional mpg figure, which the AA agrees is now “outmoded, confusing and irrelevant”, particularly for young drivers.

Fuel has been sold by the litre for at least two decades, but despite that, fuel economy figures are still most prominently advertised and displayed as mpg.

AA president Edmund King said: “We buy fuel in litres, yet the majority of us still think about economy in miles per gallon. These two different measures don’t add up. As fuel economy is vital to motoring today, I think it is time to break with the nostalgia of the past and begin using fuel economy figures which relate to what we buy at the pumps.”

The AA’s latest Populus poll revealed that it was younger drivers, aged 18 to 24 years, who were most in favour of that switch (51 per cent). But when it came to converting mpg into actual fuel costs at the pumps, Auto Express found motorists of all ages were confused.

When we asked 10 drivers to calculate the cost of a 20-mile round trip behind the wheel of a car achieving 45mpg – with a fuel price of 140ppl – only one motorist was able to do the sums in their head. This was the only motorist who knew the conversion rate – roughly 4.5 litres per gallon.

When the same maths problem was posed, swapping the 45mpg for its equivalent 10 miles-per-litre, 60 per cent of the drivers quizzed at the Tesco Extra fuel forecourt in Watford, Herts, were able to quickly come up with the correct answer: £2.80.

Auto Express editor-in-chief, Steve Fowler, said: “When money’s tight, the last thing motorists need is a fuel economy measurement that is virtually impossible for the average driver to convert into real spend at the pumps.

“Our findings clearly show that motorists could easily do these sums in their head if the industry started quoting fuel economy figures in miles per litre.” By law, economy figures should actually be published in litres per 100 kilometres, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. However, it says motorists are confused by this metric measure, so mpg is used more prominently alongside it.

Gallons have been used for centuries, originally to measure wine and ale. But it became law to sell fuel in litres in 1988.

Disqus - noscript

Presumably then, just over 2/3 wanted to stay with miles per gallon, so why the fuss to change? In time, it will happen without the need to upset 2/3 of motorists.
It is a pretty desperate indictment of our arithmetic skills if people can't multiply or divide by 5 (which is more than accurate enough for these purposes) in the rare event of needing to know how much a journey is going to cost.

I note in Auto Express magazine there has not been an effort to also include MPL figures in its own content. Will there be an MPL figure in AE? Surely a short bit of programme code could make written MPG figures include the MPL in real-time as it's being typed in the office.

All fuel stations should be forced to sell in Gallons again S O D the EU... Milk should be sold in pints ... A pound is a pound not a euro

I used to do a conversion to work out my MPG but really, life's too short so I just click through my display in the car and that gives me it instantly. As someone who's old enough to remember when £1 bought you at least three gallons and a trip to London in 1971 when a six gallon fill was £2.16, the cost per gallon now is just shocking. I can even programme my display to show the fuel used per litre, so I'm sorted. The advantage of pump prices in litres is, of course, when you're abroad and see how little they pay.

Since prices at the stations have been set per lt , then consumption should also be in lt per miles.
Its common sense!
Do we need another 30-50 years to realize that?
Once we adopted lt in measurements of fuels what is the logic of still calculating consumption in gallons???
For old grandpa's and grandma's sake?

We should have done this years ago. Also need to change from miles to kilometres, it's so much simpler.

I would further agree to that.
No need to be a nuclear physicist to adopt!!
Its a more accurate and precise way of measuring and all values are expressed in denominations of 10,100,1000 and so forth.
What could be more simple than than?
Unless we still want to believe that the rest of Europe and almost most of the world, except some of the past British Colonies (U.S.A,, Australia, Hong Kong), are not as smart as we are.

I am working in Australia at the moment - they still drive on the left but measure road vehicle speed Km/h and distance in Km.
It would make a lot of sense except the cost of signage and the opportunity (that I am sure that they would take) to ratchet down speeds further. The consumption is usually specified in litres per 100 Km.
I don't really understand why the UK is still using miles.

The survey is quite clear that British drivers prefer MPG; and the calculation was just a bit contrived - if it had been 34mpg and 142ppl then the results would have evened out.

Not surprised to see that the AA is part of a European federation of motoring groups. It has also gone off-beam in talking up speed cameras when most drivers know they're about making money out of travelling at a safe speed. By pure coincidence the AA has a subsidiary Drivetech that makes money out of speed awareness courses.

Then we have their PR man talking up drive-time road pricing. Don't know if he was cosying up to the Blair government or the EU, who wanted road pricing, but I don't see the AA as at all representative of British drivers.

Arrowsmith/kirra1 pse note that the hour is technically not a 'metric measure' (SI unit). Nor officially is the litre. If you want to stick to the metric bible (as opposed to mere continentalising) then fuel would have to be expressed in cubic metres, speed in metres per second or per kilosecond. Try a few sums in your head...

Don't do it here in Canada people still don't understand it. If you go to a car dealer and the sticker on the window sais 5.3L/100km people say yeah but what's that in mpg. And anyone older than 12 can't picture it in their old imperial minds.

By law we should measure distance in light years. And speed as a fraction of it. So in most cars the figure where the needle tops out at max speed says 0.0000000, and all motorway signs would show a distance of 0.0000000 to any location.
It would put an end to illegal clocking of cars, as all cars clocks would show 0.000000 distance travelled, even in taxis.

Just put the pumps back to gallons - we are British after all!
I've never heard anyone ask how many miles to the litre do you get!
Road signage will be in Killometers next, that will be confusing! and after that we will be driving on the wrong side of the road, it all started when the indicator stick was put on the left of the wheel, which is totally wrong for us over here, it should be on the right!

Dear old Great Britain, yearning for a return to the days of Empire and Glory, I don't know why you don't have a man with a red flag walk in front of all your horseless carriages.

Reducied fuel consumption in mpg and the figure increases, whereas with l/100km the figure decreases

Swap all the pumps back to gallons, it can't be that hard and I bet we'll all be driving with a very light foot when the price goes from 1.42 to 6.39 overnight. I know its probably simpler to swap to litres per mile but theres just something wrong about mixing proper imperial measures with metric.

"Of 21,450 drivers surveyed, more than 7,000 voted to ditch the traditional mpg figure."
Which means that the vast majority - around 14,000 DIDN'T vote to ditch mpg.
Since when has a minority of around 1/3 been a ringing endorsement for change?
Do the AA have an agenda that makes them ignore the facts, or do they genuinely not understand basic statistics?

This country suffers from a mindset that yearns for bushels, leagues and groats! We must be the world's premier "elderly flatulences".

As the overwhelming Majority (the deciding factor in any true Democracy) has made clear, We the Motorists of Britain DO NOT want even more of this Metric Gobbledegook to deal with than we're already saddled with, by France & the EU.

The United States after all has stuck with Gallons / Quarts / Pints & Fluid Ounces, so should we, after all we export more Cars to the US than any other Country.

So Switch the Pumps back to Pints & Quarts, as apart from Ultra-Finite Measures (Microns &*Nanometres for instance) there is no advantage to Metric, & there Never will be.

You prefer the old French system then? Le gallon and la pinte are a pre-metric unit. Voilà. Research before opining. The return to the old system will never happen.