Feb 28, 2014

Posted by in Cars, Events, Featured | 2 Comments

The Mazda SKYACTIV Experiment

The Mazda SKYACTIV Experiment

Two weekends ago, we took part in the Mazda SKYACTIV Experiment. It was a two-day fuel economy run (co-sponsored by Shell) whose objective was to test MAZDA cars’ real world fuel efficiency in city and highway scenarios. Three Mazda 6, three Mazda CX-5 AWD and three Mazda CX-5 Pro were used during the event which was participated by 9 teams comprised of friends from the media, bloggers, representatives from various car clubs and other personalities.

The Team

Each test drive vehicle has three participants and a marshal. I got teamed up with Mark Lim of GeekyNights and TJ Panganiban of TJSDaily and we were assigned to drive the 2.0-Liter Mazda CX-5 Pro. There were two stages during the event, one which involves driving around major streets in the metro and the other which includes driving in Clark/SCTEx highways.

The Rules

Mazda Philippines CEO, Steven Tan

Orientation

Although it sounded simple, Mazda has actually laid out some rules to follow during the run. Mazda wanted to simulate real world driving so everything was taken into account, from the radio and aircon setting to the tire pressures. There were a number of no-nos including manually shutting off engine (during coasting, stoplight idling, in traffic, tollgates, etc.),  shifting to neutral while coasting, drafting or slipstreaming, turning off aircon or radio, altering tire pressures, unloading  of oem emergency and service equipments as well as personal luggage.

Our ride, the Mazda CX-5 Pro

Although we’ve driven some cars for review before, this was my first time to join a fuel economy run. I didn’t know that some participants of events like this are quite ‘competitive’ :D that’s why Mazda has placed a marshal in each car and has imposed a 1 Liter penalty for every infraction (added to the number of liters loaded for the leg where the infraction was committed). It was also my first time to see a route book. :D

The Drive

Day 1 – City Drive

For the day 1 route / city drive, we topped up at Shell C5 before starting the first part of our city drive. For the first part, we drove from Shell C5 to BGC to Makati CBD (via McKinley Ave) to Livestock Restaurant in Sgt Esguerra (via EDSA and Timog). After our lunch break in Livestock Restaurant, we went on to the second part of our city drive. We drove to Q.C. Circle (via Eugenio Lopez and Quezon Ave.) and passed by Visayas, Congressional-EDSA Munoz before heading to Shell Balintawak where Mazda personnel, AAP representatives and officials measured our fuel consumption before topping up again for the transport stage.  I forgot the exact liters we consumed but I think we did well (compared to the other teams’ consumptions).

Transport Stage

One of the best part of the event was the transport stage where we drove from Shell Balintawak to Holiday Inn in Clark. During this time we experienced driving the car without pressure from the marshals. It was also fun driving and seeing more than a dozen of latest Mazda car models convoy on the road.

Day 2 – Highway Drive

Pumped up from the first day’s drive, we woke up ready for the highway run. This time, we have to drive (75kms) from Clark to Hacienda Luisita then back to Clark. We need to do this twice, one at 80kph and next at 100kph.  Maybe we were too excited that we misread a sign on the route book early on the first stage. Instead of taking the Exit to Hacienda Luisita, we exited going to Subic. It was really frustrating since there were no exits going back to Clark and we had to take Dinalupihan Exit going back. This infraction caused us 1 Liter.  Although it changed our moods, we maintained a positive vibe and decided to finish the highway run and just enjoy the road.

The Award and Mazda SKYACTIV Experience

At the awarding, we were not surprised that we won the city leg. What surprised us was our fuel efficiency digit. While the other cars were averaging 10-11km/L, we managed to record 14.61km/L, even beating the other Mazda-6 cars with iELOOP . It was really impressive since the entire time we had our music on (via bluetooth and smartphone), aircon and thermostat both set at 25 (or below) and not to mention the bulky bags we have. And even it was a Saturday, we still met some mid to heavy traffic on the road.

As expected, we didn’t win the highway leg because of the 1-Liter penalty. The winner of the highway run recorded an impressive 17.06 km/L. When they were about to announce the overall winner for our category, we were not expecting to win (because of the penalty). Surprisingly, we were still able to edge out the other CX-5 Pros and averaged 14.2 km/L for both the city and highway leg. I wonder how much we’ll get without the penalty.

Perhaps, what helped us a lot was the i-STOP, specifically during our city drive. The i-STOP is Mazda’s idling stop technology, part of the Mazda’s SKYACTIV Technology. The i-STOP automatically switches off the engine when you put your foot on the brake when you’re stopping, say at intersections. Once you take your foot off the brake, engine switches back on. This, by far was the Mazda CX-5 Pro’s feature that impressed me and my teammates most (aside from the cruise control, Bluetooth, rear parking assist monitor, etc. :)). Mazda says i-STOP improves fuel economy by approximately eight percent.

Mazda peeps

True to its commitment to continually deliver “driving pleasure” and “outstanding environmental and safety performance”, the MAZDA SKYACTIV Technology embedded into Mazda’s next-generation engines, transmissions, chasis and body impresses by providing fuel economy and low emissions without sacrificing the performance.

It was really an awesome driving weekend. Everybody had a great time test driving the latest Mazda cars and Mazda’s SKYACTIV Technology features. And best of all it was fun making new friends and meeting fellow car enthusiasts at the event. Congratulations Mazda Philippines for the successful event.

Congratulations  #TeamSubic :D

More photos HERE.

Mazda’s SKYACTIV Technology

Mazda’s i-STOP

More on the i-STOP

iELOOP

 

 



  1. Internally, Shell calls the route book as JMP (journey management plan); it is a non-negotiable rule to ensure workplace safety in Shell :)

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