2nd Annual AJAC Eco-Run demonstrates remedies for gas pump pain

OTTAWA, June 4th, 2013 – Canadians continue to be concerned over the high costs to fuel their vehicles, but feel there’s little they can do to find relief. In fact, there are ways to ease the pain at the pump and AJAC (Automobile Journalists Association of Canada) is set to demonstrate remedies we all can use.

A team of 22 AJAC journalists gathered today, Tuesday, June 4/13, 10 a.m., at Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) head office, 580 Booth St., Ottawa, for the start of the second annual AJAC Eco-Run. Following opening ceremonies highlighted by an announcement by Natural Resources Canada Minister Joe Oliver, the Eco-Run convoy set out on a three-day drive to Montreal using 22 new vehicles that represent the most advanced fuel-efficient and eco-friendly technologies available in today’s automotive marketplace. Participating vehicles range from compacts and family sedans to premium full-size SUVs and pickups. The types of powertrains include pure electrics and plug-in hybrids, gas/electric hybrids and a variety of high-efficiency gas- and diesel-fuelled engines. Not only does this event highlight the latest advances by manufacturers to improve fuel efficiency and reduce the impact on our fragile environment, the journalists will be using driving techniques we all can adopt to reduce fuel consumption – and fuel costs – regardless of the age of our vehicles.

The AJAC Eco-Run is not a competition – there will be no winners. The various entries will demonstrate, however, that consumers have numerous choices when looking for a new, fuel-efficient vehicle, regardless of the size, type and price range they’re seeking. To help consumers make informed decisions, NRCan, which has again partnered with AJAC for this event, will be monitoring, in partnership with CrossChasm, the vehicles’ energy use throughout the Eco-Run to demonstrate the fuel efficiencies attainable in a real-world driving situations. Results of the monitoring will be posted on the AJAC website, www.ajac.ca, following the conclusion of the run.

The Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) is also returning as a partner for this event – in fact, the Eco-Run has stopped at CAA’s annual general meeting at the Chateau Laurier hotel so delegates can view the vehicles and interact with the drivers.

Schneider Electric, another returning partner, will not only be providing charging stations for use during the event, it will also be donating a charging unit for installation at l’École Polytechnique in Montreal, where the Eco-Run will conclude on Thursday, June 6. A Formula One driver, in Montreal for the weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix activities, will be joining us at the École Polytechnique workshop.

The Eco-Run will spend Wednesday at the PMG Technologies facilities in Blainville, Que., where the vehicles and drivers will be featured as part of Performance Innovation Transport’s (PIT) fifth anniversary celebration.

The public can follow the day-to-day progress of the Eco-Run on the AJAC website, Facebook and Twitter #ecorun. They are also invited to join the drivers and check out the vehicles at our stops en route, where they can also get driving tips and expert advice from the CAA, NRCan and the AJAC journalists.

For even more in-depth tips on altering your driving techniques to reduce fuel consumption and lower emissions, Stantec Consultants, another Eco-Run partner, is introducing an online tutorial for consumers that has been developed in conjunction with NRCan. The Eco-driving course is part of Stantec’s Learning Solutions program. 

2nd Annual AJAC Eco-Run itinerary (All times are approximate and subject to change.)

June 4th, 2013:

9:45 a.m. – Eco-Run convoy assembles at NRCan offices, 580 Booth St., Ottawa

10 a.m. – Opening ceremonies; address by NRCan Minister Joe Oliver and official start of Eco-Run

11:00 a.m. – Convoy departs for Chateau Laurier and CAA AGM. Eco-Run vehicles will be on display on the fifth floor of the hotel parking garage

2:00 p.m. – Convoy departs Chateau Laurier for Montebello, Que.

June 5th, 2013:

8:30 a.m. – Convoy departs Montebello, heading for PMG Technologies facilities in Blainville, Que.

10:00 a.m. – Arrive at PMG for in PIT (Performance Innovation Transport) fifth anniversary celebrations.

3:30 p.m. –Depart for overnight stop in Saint-Eustache, Que.

June 6th, 2013:

9:00 a.m. – Depart Saint-Eustache for École Polytechnique in Montreal

10:00 a.m. – Arrive at École Polytechnique workshop at 210 Rue Bridge for special event featuring Formula One driver, followed by closing ceremonies.

AJAC Eco-Run Vehicle Fleet:

Chevrolet Cruze Diesel, Chevrolet Volt, Ram 1500 HFE, Ford C-MAX Hybrid, Ford Focus EV, Ford Fusion Energi, Honda Accord Plug-in Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata Hybrid, Infiniti M35 Hybrid, Kia Rio LX Eco five-door, Lexus ES 300h, Mazda3, Mazda6, Mazda CX-5, Mercedes-Benz B 250, Mercedes-Benz GLK 250 BlueTEC, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, Porsche Cayenne Diesel, smart fortwo electric, Toyota Prius v, Subaru Forester, Volkswagen Jetta Turbo Hybrid

For more information, contact:

Siobhan Duffield, cell: 519.563.8417, E: siobhan@ajac.ca

Susan Elliott, cell: 416.726.2403, E: susan.elliott@elliott-com.com

Photos and videos of the Eco-Run have been posted to the AJAC Eco-Run web site: www.ajac.ca/eco-run.

This press release was distributed by the CNW Group: AJAC’s official newswire service.

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