Last post on Mar 11, 2013 at 8:18 AM
You are in the Ford Focus
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Ford Focus, Ford Focus SVT, Fuel Efficiency (MPG)
#55 of 177 Update on 2005 Ford Focust ST at 65,000 miles
Aug 04, 2008 (10:20 am)
I previously reported mileage after about 2,000 miles of experience with my used 2005 Ford Focus and 27,000 total miles. At that time I was getting about 27 MPG. Now with 65,000 on the clock, it is time to update that report.
It's all good. Over the 40,000 miles of driving, I'm averaging slightly better than 30 MPG. The ST is still rock solid and a joy to drive. I decided to update today after realizing just how much fun the Focus ST is on a beautiful morning drive. It still makes me grin. No squeaks, no rattles. Perfectly composed handling and steering. Zero unscheduled maintenance costs. It still looks and performs as new. I've gone through P6 tires at about 30,000 miles for each set. I've used Valvoline pure synthetic oil. I've performed all factory scheduled maintenance. And that's it. Absolutely great car. I've since bought a 2008 Mercury Milan Premier with the same engine for my wife's primary car and it yields 27.7 MPG average in the bigger car with a 5-speed automatic. Very impressive. My experience matches the recent quality and reliability surveys that suggest that Ford is now on par with Toyota. The Focus is remarkably competent for an affordable economy car. The purposeful styling hides a driver's car that is truly a blast to drive and is still easy on fuel, more important now that gasoline is a $4.00 per gallon. I thank my lucky stars I test drove the Focus. I think it had languished on the dealer's lot because not that many people can drive manual transmissions any more. It fit me perfectly and was fun then. Nothing else I was looking at then would be saving as much money today and still be as much fun. Thank you Ford.
#56 of 177 Re: First gas check on my new 04 ZTW 2.3L, AT [fapar47]
Aug 07, 2008 (5:45 pm)
I know that 34K miles isn't that much, compared to when these cars can go over 200,000 miles easily on their engines if taken care of properly. I'm a firm believer in using oil cleaners and gas additives to make sure engines are properly clean.
I used to drive for courier company in New Mexico, USA, and we use Focus ZX3 with 5 sp manual tranny. When brand new, they were rockets!! I was lucky that I wasn't caught checking how fast it would go on interstate, like some of other drivers did. But most of these cars were driven HARD, and I was able to make 33-35 mpg at 75 mph speed limit on freeway, which is where I always drove my car, with very little city driving. But that was because I always used gas additive to clean engine. I also changed oil myself many times, occasionally using "Motor Flush" to clean out oil completely. Some might feel I wasted my money, but I got the mpg I desired from it.
But even your car probably wouldn't gain great benefits from what I've described above. Seems like something else might be the problem, possibly mechanical. I know that automatic transmissions don't get as good mpg as 5 sp tranny's, but I've gotten my beatup 1991 Geo Prizm with 240K miles on it to go from 28 mpg to 35 mpg highway by cleaning up engine inside and out.
Only other suggestion I might make is to try Bosch "+2" plugs. They burn the gas mixture more effectively, and is what allowed my junker to finally achieve the 35 mpg on highway.
#57 of 177 What was your best recorded mpg on a Focus?...
Aug 08, 2008 (7:34 am)
My best ever clocked tank was 38 mpg while driving west to east on US 50 in Nevada. I think several factors may have been in play: A) driving east with the wind. B) Descending a bit in elevation from Reno while driving toward Fallon. C) The possibility that I bought a tank of 100 percent gasoline in Nevada without ethanol bringing down my mileage as happen later in South Dakota. And, D) keeping the cruise control at 65 and turning off the AC while going up grades.
I'm not a mileage geek as portrayed on ABC Nightline a few months ago where one fella never exceeded 20 mph while driving to work in Chicago on tires 10 to 20 pounds over inflated. But I am curious if anyone has ever cracked 40 mpg in a Focus.
#58 of 177 48 mpg
Aug 13, 2008 (10:06 am)
I have a 2003 Ford Focus ZX3 manual. I drove 380 miles from Binghamton, NY to Pittsburgh, PA going mostly the speed limit or under, ranging from 45-50 mph in construction zones, 55 mph zones and 65 mph interstate. I got 48 mpg with gasoline from Mobil. I didn't use A/C or the cd player. I had the windows up and the fan going at 2.
On the way back, I used gasoline from BP and got all the way back to Binghamton without having to stop for gas. I only used 8.8 gallons of gas for 382 miles so I got about 43 mpg. There were alot of stop and go construction on the way back on 80 E. I was amazed I could get so much mpg from a Ford Focus.
I didn't use the brakes very much and was able to coast down the hills without using the accelerator.
When I used to go 75-85 mph, I only got 30 mpg. When I went 95 mph, I only got 26 mpg. For regular city driving, I get about 29 mpg.
#59 of 177 Anyone swapped out the airfilter?
Aug 15, 2008 (4:19 am)
I was wondering if anyone who swapped in a K&N Air filter got better fuel econ.
#60 of 177 Misa, what does a CD player have to do with mpg?...
Aug 16, 2008 (9:42 pm)
I advise using your AC since you paid for it and it doesn't cut mpg much. Also, from what I read an air cleaner does not effect mpg much when it becomes dirty. Using a electronics such as a CD player in a car will not drop your mpg due to using battery power.
Sep 24, 2008 (12:29 pm)
I have an 08 Focus, 5 spd...mostly expressway driving, usually 75 mph, and usually get 33-34 mpg (display usually says 35). I think driving around the speed limit, you should be able to get 38 or so- my wife took it to SC, and said she thought there were times they averaged 40. I usually accelerate briskly as well...someday, I'll try to have patience and just see what I can average for a week...80 miles round trip to work.
#62 of 177 Re: 2005 Ford Focus Sedan [comp386]
Nov 25, 2008 (6:59 pm)
>>Wow my MPG suffered after going to 100% highway. I recently moved and I go about 70 (yeah I follow the speed limit) on the freeway for my entire commute and I'm down to 29-30 MPG. I was getting better fuel economy going local with some minor gridlock. Very odd
Not odd, really. This actually sounds just about right. Don't underestimate the effect of excessive speed on fuel economy. You may not think 70 is excessive, but try dropping to 60 and see your fuel economy dramatically increase. I'd say about 10% better.
#63 of 177 Actual numbers
Nov 25, 2008 (7:14 pm)
I keep religious tally of fuel economy, being somewhat of a statistical nut. Here's my numbers, for a 2007 2.0L SES 5-speed run almost exclusively with E10. (EPA revised rating of 24/33).
As of 11-21-08, with 29560 miles on the clock:
Best tank: 40.84 mpg
Worst tank: 29.66 mpg (first tank)
Average: 34.76 mpg
Most miles on a single tank: 421
Total spent on gas over 15 months: $2,786.39
#64 of 177 2009 Focus Sedan 5 Speed with Revised "Overdrive"
Nov 26, 2008 (9:59 am)
I just purchased this so can't report on gas mileage yet - I have just 200 miles on it. Almost all the miles on it are mine - I was the first and last to test drive it, when I pulled it out of the lot it had 6 miles on it, when I purchased it, it had 26 miles on it - I test drove it twice, first time to see if I liked it, second time two weeks later to make sure nothing had happened to it since the first test drive (like clutch abuse from another test driver - yeah, that can happen).
I re-set the digital gas mileage readout after the dealer filled the tank and also zeroed the trip meter.
Generally I don't have a special break-in routine, I believe that my normal commute, which combines about 10% city miles and 90% mixed freeway miles (high speed, slow and go, occasionally some stop and go) is a good break in routine, provided I don't lug it (let the rpm's go too low and then try to accelerate with heavy throttle, instead of downshifting) or use more than 3/4 throttle (and only use more than 1/4 throttle after fully warmed up).
Since I intend to drive from SF to LA this afternoon, though, I decided to try to accelerate the break-in period with some more aggressive driving than usual. I mention this because it drags down the gas mileage, which I will report in a moment.
To accelerate the break in period, I first varied my commute to include more city driving. I drove to a more remote on-ramp, which includes a hill climb. City driving has more acceleration and coast down (cool down) cycles and is supposedly better for seating the rings. It also varies the RPM, which is the only admonition in the owners manual (which basically states, don't drive too hard or at one constant speed).
Second, I accelerated more aggressively and ran the rpm higher during slow and go traffic and on the streets. Instead of limiting my self to 1/4 throttle, I ran it up to 1/2 throttle; instead of shifting at 2,500 rpm, I ran it up to 4,000. These brief, harder runs supposedly "buff" high spots (of which there are few in modern engines) without creating excessive heat or galling. Keeping the rpm away from the 6,500 rpm assures there is plenty of oil flow (after this is broken in, I will replace the factory oil with Mobil 1 full synthetic, which is reportedly very superior to conventional oils in maintaining an oil film if there is reduced flow at very high rpm, and it is also more resistant to thermal breakdown at high rpm when the operating temperatures can peak and there isn't a lot of oil flow to carry heat away).
My goal was to drive it harder than my usual break-in to accelerate break-in, but no so hard that I would be stressing the engine. In short, compared to my normal mild-mannered driving style, I drove the new car more the way the typical aggressive American driver drives routinely.
All of the above tend to reduce mileage, so I haven't been expecting much in the first couple of hundred miles, but to my surprise the computer is registering 34.5 mpg!
Well, I'll be putting about 800 freeway miles on it over the next three days. I'll report back on both computer indicated mileage and on calculated mileage. As the earlier poster notes, the sweet spot for mileage is usually 50-60 mph, but interstate speeds are more like 70-80 mph. I'll try to keep it down to 70, but almost all my other cars have been 2-4 mpg lower for interstate trips than for my commute (which has much lower average speeds).
Finally - my thoughts on break-in. In my experience, modern motors are still breaking in at 15,000 miles, but for all practical purposes (driveability, gas mileage, power) the process is mostly completely by 7,500 miles. Of the first 7,500 miles, the first 200 are MOST critical, but from 600 to 1000 miles any critical break-in buffing is complete and the car can be driven hard (many owner's manuals state a 600 to 1,000 mile "cautious" break-in period, followed by no precautions). So I'm going to take the next 400 miles "easy" and will welcome any pre-Thanksgiving traffic that will slow down the interstate. After I hit 600 miles - essentially for my return trip - I'll just drive it completely normally. If I don't run into Thanksgiving slowdowns today, I'll vary my interstate driving speeds by spending some time in the turtle - I mean truck - lane and some time in the car lanes, which gives me a range of from 50 mph to 80 mph to assist the break in process. I considered changing to Mobil 1 before the trip, but the Motorcraft 5-20 oil that Ford developed is such a superior lubricant that I think it will work just fine, if I keep my throttle, top speeds, and steady speeds in the break-in mode.