Accelerate Gently

The harder you accelerate the more fuel you consume. In the city, you can conserve fuel by easing onto the accelerator pedal gently and gradually.

To maximize your fuel efficiency, take five seconds to accelerate your vehicle up to 20 kilometres per hour from a stop.

Just imagine that there’s an egg under your pedal and an open cup of coffee on your dashboard. Be careful not to break the shell or spill the drink! If you’re driving a gasoline fuelled vehicle with a manual transmission, use a moderate throttle position and shift between 2,000 and 2,500 revolutions per minute. 

fuel consumption based on acceleration

Fuel consumption based on acceleration

Text version

Graphic representing two curves of fuel consumption based on fuel consumption in millilitres over distance in meters. The fuel-efficient driving style curve shows that accelerating gently greatly improves fuel consumption.


Video Transcript

[Info4yourLife theme music]

[Cars in city – traffic]

[Cars at stop signs/lights, accelerating quickly]

[Split screen - close up of foot pressing down hard on gas and close up of foot pressing gently on the gas pedal]


"City drivers – do you know about half the fuel you consume is used just to accelerate your vehicle?

That’s right, and the harder you accelerate, the more fuel you consume.

The good news is you can conserve up to 15 per cent of fuel by easing the gas pedal gently and gradually. Watch this…"

[Car slowly accelerating from zero to 20 – show dashboard, foot on pedal and outside of car]

[Can they have a cup of coffee on the dashboard?]

[Demonstrate this with a manual car]


"To maximize your fuel efficiency, take about 5 seconds to accelerate from zero to 20 kilometers per hour.

Imagine there is an egg under your accelerator or an open, nearly full cup of coffee on your dashboard. You don’t want to break the egg or spill the coffee.

If you have a manual transmission, you should shift between 2,000 and 2,500 revolutions per minute and use a moderate throttle position."

[Image of graph – red line drawn in, followed by green line]


"This chart shows the savings you can achieve using this driving technique. The red line represents the amount of fuel used to accelerate rapidly and the green line represents the amount of fuel necessary to accelerate gradually. That’s a big difference!

[Cars on road]

[Close up of exhaust from exhaust pipe]

[Person at gas pump]


"With small changes, it’s possible for everyone to improve their fuel efficiency and reduce green house gas emissions.

Think of it this way…if all drivers in Canada practiced fuel efficient driving, we would prevent 6 million tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere and save $2.6 billion in fuel costs, based on a fuel cost of $1 per litre."

[Super graphic: For more fuel efficient driving tips go to ]