I have a 38 freeway commute every weekday. Having cruise control would've been nice.
I went to the wrecking yard and collected nearly all the parts to install a factory cruise control EXCEPT for the gas pedal assembly. That part seems SO physically impossible to remove that I would swear that was the first part laid down when Honda assembled my 1989 Civic.
Because to the gas pedal part problem, I'm gonna install a hillbilly gas pedal control. This is actually better than factory cruise control, because it holds the gas pedal at a constant rate regardless of going up hill, whereas factory cruise control will waste gas going up grades.
Before I reveal my ideas and jade any of your creative thoughts, I'd like to know how you would rig such a hillbilly cruise control.
...This is actually better than factory cruise control, because it holds the gas pedal at a constant rate regardless of going up hill, whereas factory cruise control will waste gas going up grades...
That's what motorcyclists fit as a poor man's cruise control: A throttle lock.
Considering that the purpose of cruise control is to lock in a fixed speed, I personally don't see your proposition as being "better." It's just easier to install. It won't ease up on the throttle as you go downhill, nor throttle-off entirely as you descend a steep enough incline, thus wasting fuel needlessly, besides not keeping a steady speed. Do you really want your car slowing down as it climbs an incline? It's your car, and your call (obviously).
The things I would insist on:
Automatic disengagement of throttle lock, such as when you touch the brakes, clutch, or shift into neutral without using the clutch
Easy and unambiguous manual disengagement
In an emergency situation, you definitely don't want to have to manually disengage the throttle lock. Also, nail down what happens when you press the accelerator to pass someone. Does the throttle lock release, or does it lock in at the higher speed?
BTW, the common complaint from bikers with throttle-lock cruise control is that it's an obvious suboptimal solution on anything other than flattish terrain. Better than nothing, but not great.
2015 Audi Q5 "Progressiv" + S-Line + Scuba Blue, 3.0L V6 TDI
(Highest fuel economy for all Audi Q5s on Fuelly!)
Do you really want your car slowing down as it climbs an incline?
For maximum fuel efficiency you do. It's called Driving With Load.
The FIAT had a hand throttle. Not a throttle lock. It was mounted at the side of the steering column. If you wished to speed up, such as to overtake (highly unlikely in a FIAT 126), you just pushed down the accelerator. When you lifted off it went back to the hand throttle position. But as Steve says, it ran away down hills and I always felt I was never in full control.
2006 Honda Jazz 1.2i-DSi S Vivid Blue Pearl