Winter use of cars in Finland

Kari Alppivuori

Research output: Book/ReportReport


A mail enquiry was made on the winter use of passenger cars and particularly on the number and use of electrical engine prewarmers. The influence of more effective use of prewarmers on energy consumption has been estimated from the results. The mileage during winter season, 1.10. - 30.4., varies per vehicle from 8 600 to 11 800 km depending on the province. The annual mileage varies from 18 700 to 24 800 km. The average mileage of those interviewed was about 20 600 km, of which 8 800 km was driven in winter. An average 10 % of the passenger cars used in winter have no garage, or possibility to use electrical engine prewarmer. The corresponding figure on workplaces is 56 %. About 77 % of the cars have a prewarmer. In the province of Lappi the figure is close to one hundred and in the province of Uusimaa 68 %. During winter the prewarmer is used an average 4.8 hours per day, which has to be considered an unnecessary long time. During winter 80 - 87 % of the passenger cars are in traffic on workdays and during the weekends 72 - 82 %. During winter (about 7 months) about 2 million starts are daily made with passenger cars, of which only one third are prewarmed starts. On annual level it means over 400 million cold starts and 215 million prewarmed starts. It has been estimated that with more effective use of the prewarmer about 55 million litres of fuel or about 3 % of the total consumption of the passenger cars could be saved annually.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEspoo
PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Number of pages36
ISBN (Print)951-38-2279-6
Publication statusPublished - 1985
MoE publication typeD4 Published development or research report or study

Publication series

SeriesValtion teknillinen tutkimuskeskus. Tiedotteita


  • automobiles
  • fuel consumption
  • energy saving
  • energy consumption
  • forecasts
  • winter conditions
  • cold weather tests
  • heating


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