Coasting your bike to save fuel

I don’t know whether this ruins the engine or not, but when I’m low on fuel, I like to let my motorbike just coast along on it’s own momentum. I just give it a tweak on the throttle and glide down the road.

It’s taught me a couple of things.

  1. You don’t really realise how much you’re braking until you consciously stay off the brake lever. Try this; but be careful about how you ride when you do, it could be dangerous.

    When you see the road ahead is clear of any traffic, tweak the throttle until you’ve got a nice cruising speed. Then let go the accelerator, and clamp down on the clutch. Coast until you’re going quite slow. It’s surprising how long a well maintained bike will maintain momentum.

    If you’re cruising down a scenic highway, this is a great tip.

  2. It made me realise that I’m not using my motorbike to it’s maximum fuel-efficiency. I don’t need to be at 4,000 RPM all the time. I could let my engine idle at 1,000 RPM and still get where I want to get; though admittedly, it would be slower.
  3. I usually get around 47Km to every litre of petrol when I ride in the city. Using this fuel saving technique, I can get up to 60Km per litre if I am not travelling in an area with a lot of traffic and gear shifting.
  4. I’ve found that sometimes, I’ll be coasting along, and bikers around me slow down. They slow down while throttling their engines, and braking. I’ve found that coasting alongside them, knowing that they’re burning up more fuel than I am is a comforting thought.
  5. It’s taught me the dangers of braking late in traffic. This could become seriously dangerous if you’re not an experienced bike rider. I discourage you from doing it. I, however, will continue to do so.
  6. It’s taught me the advantages of braking late in traffic. Sometimes, when I’m moving relatively slowly, I avoid braking until I absolutely have to. This keeps me moving longer, and each second that I’m moving with my engine in idle is a little more petrol saved.

    In terms of plain biking skills, it’s taught me to gauge other driver’s possible actions, and ride based on that. It’s taught me how to be more alert, and to keep moving inspite of drivers ahead of me changing their lanes, directions and speeds.

  7. It taught me that I also like to rev my engine and hit high speeds sometimes. And that riding a bike at slow speeds can get boring.

Feel free to mix up your bike-riding techniques from time to time. Try it out sometime, but remember, it may not be good for your bike’s engine. I’m no mechanic. Also, you’ve got to becareful if you try this in traffic. It could get dangerous.

WARNING: This could be dangerous to life and limb. Try it at your own risk, and even then, only if you have at-least two years of frequent bike-riding experience.

1 thought on “Coasting your bike to save fuel”

Leave a comment