Truck Aerodynamics

Things you can do to save gas mileage in your truck:

  • Accelerate slowly. This saves wear on your tires also.
  • Keep your tires inflated.
  • Coast to a red light, try to avoid losing momentum
  • Drive as slow as you can on the highway (55, 60, 65 tops)

As your speed increases on the highway so does the amount of energy you spend just trying to overcome the air. It's lame; something like 80% of each gallon at 75mph is lost against the wind. Slowing down puts more of the gas towards actually getting somewhere (moving the mass itself).

Also, to take things to new levels of dorkiness, try these:

  • Use a tonneau (well, that's not bad visually)
  • Smooth the underside of your vehicle with paneling.
  • Cover the wheel wells (like those old cars)
  • Reduce the double wake caused by the truck cab and the tailgate by constructing an angled truck cap that slopes down from the cab towards the tailgate.
  • Reduce the area of the tailgate by constructing a bubble or some angled piece that attaches back there.

I can deal with the first set of tips, though I savor passing absurdly slow cars, and I wouldn't mind a tonneau or some underbody panelling. Making the truck into a giant egg-shaped beast is a little unappealing, though. Maybe if it was like the Batmobile's armor and I could just enable it for long trips I'd be okay. I'd need banners on the side saying "I get better mileage than you" to explain the oddity.