Last post on Aug 28, 2013 at 11:08 AM
You are in the Ford Focus
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Ford Focus, Ford Focus SVT, Fuel Efficiency (MPG)
#64 of 185 2009 Focus Sedan 5 Speed with Revised "Overdrive"
Nov 26, 2008 (8:59 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.
#65 of 185 2008 Focus SES Sedan MPG
Jan 20, 2009 (7:40 pm)
I bought this car in September 2008, and I live in Raleigh, NC. I now have 6800 miles on the car. When the weather was warmer, I would get about 31 MPG. Now with the colder weather, I get about 29 MPG. My drive to and from work each day is 30 miles, 85% of which is highway at 75 to 80mph. Aside from work, I do errands with the car, which is more like 50% stop-and-go and 50% highway.
One thing I notice is that the car's self-proclaimed Average MPG is always over stated. It consistently says I'm getting at least 3 MPG more than I calculate at each fill up.
The MPG is "okay" in my opinion. Other cars that I considered (and test-drove) before buying Focus were the Honda Fit, Toyota Yaris and Corolla, and Nissan Versa. The Focus had the most comfort, quietest interior, and more features than the others for about the same price. So I'm happy overall. In fact, I love the little thing! Just wish the MPG were a little higher.
#66 of 185 Re: 2008 Focus SES Sedan MPG [sryder32]
Jan 21, 2009 (8:12 am)
I know it would be difficult, however, If you drop the 75-80 down several mph, you will see mid -thirties mpg. EPA mileage estimates are not based on your 75-80.
My experience with the trip computers ( in a ford probe ) some years back was similar to yours, actual mpg was about 3 less than indicated.
#67 of 185 Re: 2008 Focus SES Sedan MPG [sryder32]
Jan 21, 2009 (10:35 am)
Stick shift or auto?
#68 of 185 Re: 2008 Focus SES Sedan MPG [sryder32]
Mar 25, 2009 (9:46 am)
I have a 2007 SE. I believe it is a 5 speed auto trans. Definitely find that if you keep it below 60 mph you get better mpg. I have modified the fuel delivery system to include a fuel heater. This seems to keep me up to 34 to 35 mpg in the winter here in Chicago. I also add lucus fuel injector cleaner and upper cylinder lube to the mix, about 2 ounces a fill up. Warm weather is getting me closer to 37.5 to 38 mpg.
#69 of 185 Re: 2008 Focus SES Sedan MPG [hineblazer]
Mar 26, 2009 (7:21 am)
I must ask, does this "Fuel Heater" work in the summer-time as well? I don't see this being a good idea under those conditions. Who sells this Product. ?
The Focus A/T is a 4-speed unit w/ overdrive, that is your 5th gear. The "green-zone" would be to keep to a reasonable speed on the Highway ( below 60 is probably dangerous today )
The RpM"s on my 2.3 ZTS would be about 2250 at that speed, which I think is about equivalent to top gear in the five-speed manual tranny.
EPA estimates will usually show MPG slightly better for M/T models. That does not mean that real world results will be the same. It is problematic at best, but most drivers do not use the tranny to optimize mileage. With an A/T the driver would only need to "train the foot" to apply as little throttle pressure as required to drive effectively.
#70 of 185 Re: Ford Focus Owners: MPG-Real World Numbers [KarenS]
Apr 30, 2009 (6:07 pm)
With the A/C in use, the fuel economy for my commute is about 25 mpg.
With the A/C not in use, the fuel economy for my commute is about 29 mpg.
With the A/C not in use, and coasting to stops with the transmission disengaged, my fuel economy is 32 mpg.
My commute is 13 miles one way, about half highway and half surface streets.
#71 of 185 i had a focus as a loaner for a couple of days
May 06, 2009 (3:14 pm)
when i figured out how to read the computer, the mpg's read 36+.
i reset it and when i turned it in it read 33.
it had a 4 speed auto. i was impressed, since my commute is less than 14 miles each way.
#72 of 185 Re: Update on 2005 Ford Focust ST at 65,000 miles [basiliskst]
May 08, 2009 (5:11 am)
Couldn't agree more with the above post. Bought my '03 Focus SVT used in '06 when gas hit $3.20/gal. It had 15k on it then, now has 67k. Outside of tires (2 sets of z-rated hi-po rubber) and at-home oil and filter changes, in the past 50k, I have not spent any money on the car! Still on the original brake pads and rotors and the interior (black leather Recaro's) looks like new with just a little work. I never expected to keep this car as long as I have (I get bored with cars easily) but find that there's nothing on the market that lights my fire enough to replace the SVT. It's a shame Ford discontinued the original hatchback design and SVT version as I'd gladly buy a new one over a Civic Si or similar. Hopefully the 2011 Focus will have a SVT version as mine will surely have 100k+ on it by then and I'll be ready for something new... I think!
#73 of 185 Re: 2008 Focus SES Sedan MPG [sryder32]
May 13, 2009 (12:15 pm)
People seam to assume the computer is wrong but I have found a lot of gas pumps are not accurate. most pumps that I have been to within 10 miles of my house seam to be off by as much as 3/4 of a gallon per fill up. I have found 2 that are within .1 off for a fill up. these descrepancies can make it seam like your car is off but more likley you are not getting the gas you are paying for.