Malaysian motorists must be feeling helpless now as fuel prices keep rising. Since mid-October, the prices of all grades have been creeping up each week and in the next 7-day cycle, there is again another increase.

This time, RON95 petrol gets bumped up by another 7 sen, taking the price per litre up past RM2.31. For RON97 petrol, the increase is 1 sen less but it takes the price per litre to RM2.60. That’s a level that has not been seen since the months of February and March this year.

Euro-2M diesel is up by 3 sen but like RON97 petrol, the new price of RM2.20 has not been seen since March 2017. As the Euro-2M grade goes to RM2.20, so the cleaner, better Euro-5 grade will not be priced at RM2.30 a litre.

With diesel now costing 10 sen more for each litre than it was at the end of September, prices of goods will go up as transport companies begin to find that they cannot absorb the increased running costs anymore and must charge more for their services. To the ordinary pick-up truck owner who uses his vehicle for personal transport, perhaps the price is not intolerable but transport operators purchase thousands of litres each month so having to now pay 10 sen more for each litre does become a significant amount.

The carmakers have been doing their best to make engines more efficient and consume less fuel (the all-new 1.5-litre Perodua Myvi that will be launched in the near future can now go up to 20 kms/litre, it is claimed) but it is still necessary to have a fuel-saving habit. You may not be able to stand not having the air-conditioner on while driving but if you are parked and waiting for someone who is buying something, why not switch off the engine and step out instead? You will definitely save fuel because when your car is standing still going nowhere and the engine is still running, that’s when consumption is at its highest. Even the fuel consumption display (if your car has one) will change from kms/litre (or litres/100 kms) to litres per hour.

[Chips Yap]


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