With the ever-increasing price of gasoline, many drivers are searching for ways to save money at the pump. Many newer cars come equipped with a drive mode that can help reduce fuel consumption: Eco Mode. But what does this unique feature do, and should you press the Eco button while driving?
Eco Mode is a special operating preset that limits your car's performance to increase fuel efficiency. It works by limiting throttle response, adjusting shift points and manipulating the air/fuel ratio of your engine. It might not feel as responsive to your jab of the gas pedal or as quick to shift gears, but it's all for a good cause: improving your car's fuel economy.
Depending on your make and model, eco mode may change the way your engine and transmission operate. Some models might even shut off the engine while idling, or allow it to run at lower RPMs in order to reduce fuel usage. In addition, the mode might alter your air conditioning settings to run more efficiently.
If you're a stickler for efficient driving, you'll probably enjoy the benefits of this mode. However, if you're looking for a little more excitement behind the wheel, it's best to leave eco mode turned off. If you're unsure of what the Eco Mode does for your car, consult your owner's manual or ask an expert. In most cases, pressing the Eco Mode button while driving is safe and won't harm your vehicle.