Optimal gear shift strategies for fuel economy and driveability

D.V. Ngo, J.A. Colin Navarrete, T. Hofman, M. Steinbuch, A.F.A. Serrarens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

58 Citations (Scopus)
14 Downloads (Pure)


This paper aims at designing optimal gear shift strategies for conventional passenger vehicles equipped with discrete ratio transmissions. In order to study quantitatively an optimal trade-off between the fuel economy and the driveability, the vehicle driveability is addressed in a fuel-optimal gear shift algorithm based on dynamic programming by three methods: method 1, weighted inverse of power reserve; method 2, constant power reserve; method 3, variable power reserve. Furthermore, another method based on stochastic dynamic programming is proposed to derive an optimal gear shift strategy over a number of driving cycles in an average sense, hence taking into account the vehicle driveability. In contrast with the dynamic-programming-based strategy, the obtained gear shift strategy based on stochastic dynamic programming is real time implementable. A comparative analysis of all proposed gear shift methods is given in terms of the improvements in the fuel economy and the driveability. The variable-power-reserve method achieves the highest fuel economy without sacrificing the driveability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1398-1413
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. Part D : Journal of Automobile Engineering
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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