Reduction of fuel consumption using driving strategy in agricultural tractor

ABSTRACT During the acquisition and use of an agricultural tractor, the consumption of fuel by the engine must be taken into account by the user, considering its nonrenewable origin and the marketing price. Appropriate strategies in driving tractors can help users to reduce production costs. In this context, the objective of this study was to evaluate the fuel consumption of an agricultural tractor using different driving strategies. Load levels were imposed, following the instructions from Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development Code 2, using an instrumented dynamometer car, in a concrete test track. Six load levels (30, 40, 50, 60, 70, and 80% of Q0) and three travel speeds (5.16, 7.29, and 10.48 km h-1) were applied for the strategies used (Full Throttle and Shifted Up - Throttle Back), where Q0 is the traction force corresponding to the maximum power in the drawbar for each gear selected. Three repetitions were made, which totaled 108 experimental units (2 × 3 × 6 × 3), in a completely randomized experimental design. Shifted Up - Throttle Back mode should be used as a strategy of tractor driving, because it can save up to 29.39% of fuel in relation to the Full Throttle mode, typically used by users.