Married Couple Pursues a New Guinness World Record for Fuel Efficiency on 35 Tanks or Less


John and Helen Taylor Kick Off North American Leg of 70-Day Around-the-Globe Road Trip, Planning to Show American Drivers How to Stretch Their Fuel Purchase

SAN FRANCISCO, March 16 /PRNewswire/ — Today, John and Helen Taylor begin the North American leg of their historic pursuit to set a Guinness World Record for Fuel Efficiency by circumnavigating the globe in a standard car, across 18,000 miles and 25 countries — using as little gasoline as possible.

The Taylors, arguably the world’s most fuel efficient drivers with 34 fuel economy driving achievements between them, started their journey on January 17 in London. To date, they have tackled the roads across Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, encountering everything from ice storms, flash floods and a tornado to dancing camels and donkey carts. The Taylors have driven 12,700 miles to date and have been averaging 51 miles per gallon by using Shell fuel and employing Shell FuelStretch principles, which includes driving and vehicle maintenance tips.

The Taylors and crew spend up to 14 hours a day on the road, driving both day and night, while adhering to strict health and safety guidelines. They also follow a strict and limited eating regime to minimize the risk of illness that could affect achieving the record. One break for the couple, however, came mid-journey, when they stopped at home in Melbourne, Australia, to attend their daughter’s wedding.

The U.S. Route

The North American leg begins in San Francisco at the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, followed by the Taylors and their support crew driving south to Los Angeles, and then heading east across the country through Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Missouri, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, Canada and New York. The Taylors expect to fill up about five times along the route, before ending in New York City on March 24.

The Taylor’s attempt to set the best fuel efficiency record possible will be challenged by mountainous roads, gridlock around major American cities and potentially challenging winter road conditions. However, they have every confidence they will achieve their goal of 35 fill-ups or less for the global journey, which ends in London in early April after crossing Portugal, Spain and France.

“Given the United State’s reputation for a wide variety of terrain, traffic congestion and road conditions this time of year, the U.S. leg will continue to test our ability to get the best fuel economy possible,” said John Taylor. “However, by implementing FuelStretch driving tips, which any driver can use, we believe we are on our way to setting a Guinness World Record that will be tough to beat!”

Teaching Drivers About FuelStretch Driving Principles

Drivers looking to get the most out of every gasoline purchase can get helpful hints from Shell “FuelStretch,” a new program being offered at Shell stations nationwide. Designed to help drivers save money and get the most out of their car choice, FuelStretch offers motorists money-saving driving tips, a credit card that helps drivers earn gasoline rebates on every purchase they make, and innovative fuels that are specially formulated to help keep engines clean.

As part of their attempt to achieve the Guinness World Record for fuel efficiency, the Taylors have been practicing Shell FuelStretch driving principles. The FuelStretch tips for vehicle maintenance and driving techniques have helped the Taylors decrease overall fuel consumption, including actions such as using cruise control on major roads and in free-flowing traffic, avoiding idling and higher speeds and minimizing vehicle drag.

“Shell wants to help drivers make the most out of every purchase, which is why we recommend they incorporate FuelStretch driving techniques into their daily routine,” says Mark Ferner, Shell Fuel Economist. “We hope the Taylor’s journey through the U.S. demonstrates that whether you’re attempting to set a Guinness World Record or just running errands around town, incorporating Shell FuelStretch principles is a simple way to be more fuel efficient.”

U.S. drivers interested in following the Taylor’s journey and learning how they too can drive more efficiently can visit http://www.fuelchallenge.com/ . The Web site chronicles the journey, providing daily statistics, highlights, and mileage records, daily blog entries from the Taylors and crew, photos, and links to the FuelStretch tips.

The Expertise and Tools Behind the Record Attempt

The Taylors approached Shell in 2004 to see if the company would participate in the world’s biggest fuel-efficiency record attempt. They chose Shell to be their exclusive gasoline provider after testing several commercially-available fuels.

By supplying the Taylors with fuel for their Fuel Economy World Record attempt, Shell is demonstrating its commitment to fuels research and development. The Taylor’s journey is the ultimate opportunity for Shell to test its fuel technology under real-world driving conditions, and the results will help Shell develop future fuels for drivers around the world.

The Taylors are driving a Volkswagen Golf FSI 1.6. It is VW’s standard Golf model, which is representative of cars you can find on the road today. Per the Golf VW’s Owner’s Manual, the standard is 34.4 U.S. miles per gallon. The Taylor’s car is accompanied by a crew trailing in two Volkswagen Passat Estates. The crew includes an independent witness, a videographer to document the journey, a writer to help chronicle the Taylor’s adventures, and two Volkswagen support personnel.

The Guinness World Record attempt requires one gasoline type throughout the journey, so the Taylor’s are using a European fuel formulation that is compatible with the European Volkswagon Golf they are driving. Shell gasolines currently available in the U.S. have important similarities to the European fuel the Taylor’s are using — both contain powerful detergents that can help keep critical engine parts clean, which can help improve engine performance.

For the attempt to qualify as an official Guinness World Record, the Taylors must travel in one direction, covering a distance of at least 18,000 miles, but no more than the full length of the Equator. The car needs to be a standard production model. There are 18 other strict rules covering antipodal points, East/West co-ordinates, independent adjudication, log books, witnesses, pre-travel engineering checks, and driving times.

“We’re excited about this new challenge as it represents the most ambitious global fuel efficiency record attempt to date,” says Craig Glenday, editor of Guinness World Records. “It’s a timely representation of what attempting a Guinness World Record is all about — pushing the boundaries of human and technological achievement while carrying along with it some helpful tips to demonstrate how every driver can save money on fuel.”

Shell Oil Products US, a subsidiary of Shell Oil Company, is a leader in the refining, transportation and marketing of fuels, and has a network of approximately 6,600 branded gasoline stations in the Western United States. Shell Oil Company is an affiliate of the Shell Group (NYSE:RDS.A) and (NYSE:RDS.B) . For more information, please visit http://www.shell.com/ . Motiva Enterprises LLC refines and markets branded products through more than 9,000 branded stations in the Eastern and Southern United States. Shell Oil Company is a 50 percent owner of Motiva Enterprises LLC, along with Saudi Refining, Inc.

Royal Dutch Shell plc

Royal Dutch Shell plc is incorporated in England and Wales, has its headquarters in The Hague and is listed on the London, Amsterdam, and New York stock exchanges. Shell companies have operations in more than 145 countries with businesses including oil and gas exploration and production; production and marketing of Liquefied Natural Gas and Gas to Liquids; manufacturing, marketing and shipping of oil products and chemicals and renewable energy projects including wind and solar power. For further information, visit http://www.shell.com/ .

Disclaimer statement:

This announcement contains forward-looking statements, that are subject to risk factors associated with the oil, gas, power, chemicals and renewables business. It is believed that the expectations reflected in these statements are reasonable, but may be affected by a variety of variables which could cause actual results, trends or reserves replacement to differ materially, including, but not limited to: price fluctuations, actual demand, currency fluctuations, drilling and production results, reserve estimates, loss of market, industry competition, environmental risks, physical risks, risks associated with the identification of suitable potential acquisition properties and targets and the successful negotiation and consummation of transactions, the risk of doing business in developing countries, legislative, fiscal and regulatory developments including potential litigation and regulatory effects arising from recategorisation of reserves, economic and financial market conditions in various countries and regions, political risks, project delay or advancement, approvals and cost estimates.

Please refer to the Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2004 (as amended) for a description of certain important factors, risks and uncertainties that may affect the Shell Group’s businesses. Neither Royal Dutch Shell plc nor any member of the Shell Group undertakes any obligation to publicly update or revise any of these forward-looking statements, whether to reflect new information, future events or other information.

Cautionary Note to US Investors:

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (‘SEC’) permits oil and gas companies, in their filings with the SEC, to disclose only proved reserves that a company has demonstrated by actual production or conclusive formation tests to be economically and legally producible under existing economic and operating conditions. We use certain terms in this presentation, such as “expected producible resources” and “amount of reserves we expect to produce”, that the SEC’s guidelines strictly prohibit us from including in filings with the SEC.

Related Articles