Display for Fuel Consumption and Vehicle Condition


Over the past few years, developments in both conventional propulsion configurations and new propulsion technologies such as different hybrid variations (serial, parallel or power-split hybrid propulsion) have enabled higher fuel savings and a more efficient operation of buses. In order to ensure a maximally efficient operation, however, the drivers need to adapt their driving styles to the respective propulsion system. Investigations on hybrid vehicles undertaken by the Fraunhofer IVI in several large cities in Germany show that the potential savings may be increased substantially by offering specialized training and practical exercises in the respective vehicles.  

One central component for this is the display for fuel consumption and vehicle condition developed by the Fraunhofer IVI. The system is made up of a compact, robust display unit, which is installed directly in the driver’s field of view, and a customer-specific user interface, which represents the most important vehicle data graphically.


User Interface

During both driving instruction and regular operation, it is very helpful for the instructed persons or drivers, respectively, to receive direct feedback to about their driving style. There are many options on how to present this data to the drivers, but all of them also have to take their specific needs and requirements into consideration.  

In its simplest configuration, the display will indicate the current mileage, the amount of fuel consumed and the average fuel consumption per one hundred kilometers. In addition, vehicle specific data may be integrated. Parameters such as the number of combustion engine shut-downs during start-stop operation, the distance covered in full electric mode, driving time, and the energy saved compared to a default value can be visualized by the display. For this, the system merely needs to be connected to the vehicle’s CAN bus and to a voltage supply. Thus, it can be easily installed with only a few simple steps. 


The display units are available with or without touch screen and in different sizes starting with a screen diagonal of 4.3 inches. The devices have a rugged design (protection class: IP 65 K and 67 K) especially suited for the operation in vehicles and are able to process data from the CAN bus interface, digital and analogue inputs and outputs, as well as camera data. Via USB connection, it is easy to export recorded series of measurements.


Leipziger Verkehrsbetriebe (LVB) GmbH

The display unit was developed in collaboration with the staff of the corporate driving school with the aim of enabling direct feedback to future drivers regarding an economical driving style.

Stadtbus Ingolstadt GmbH

The focus of the user interface design was places on the long-term acquisition of route and consumption data, in order to avoid the errors and inaccuracies occurring during refueling.