Last post on Nov 29, 2013 at 3:12 PM
You are in the Hyundai Elantra
What is this discussion about?
Hyundai Elantra, Fuel Efficiency (MPG), Hatchback, Sedan
#208 of 774 My experience for what its worth
Feb 08, 2012 (3:01 am)
To address some comments above....I did buy the car on the promise of high MPG. Anyone who says that MPG was not a factor is not being honest.
Here are some of my observations.
Yesterday I believe I finally figured out why I am not seeing the MPG ratings I expected on my 2012 Hyundai Elantra. Some of you will probably say that youíve known this all along while others will imply that I must be stupid for not figuring it out sooner.
All I can say is that I have not seen a post that clarified things for me in this manner. Also, I am slow sometimes so bear with me.
I left the office yesterday afternoon at about 3PM. It was sunny and 53. Just as I got on the highway I reset the MPG and drove the 23 mile Inter-county Connector home. My home is just off the ICC, one mile and 2 lights.
While on the ICC I put the cruise control on and set it for 59. Low and behold, I finally saw that elusive 40ish MPG. It ranged from 38.7 to 40.2 and rose and fell with the ups and downs of the highway ( itís not a level drive at times ).
As soon as I got off the ICC, on that final 1 mile to my house, the MPG immediately fell and by the time I parked I was in the 36 range.
The following morning (very early) I reversed the trip. It was 35 degrees outside. By the time I reached the ICC (again only a mile away) my MPG was 34.6. I set my cruise control to 59 and on this 23 mile drive reached a 35.1 MPG.
After thinking about these results I have concluded the following:
1. 40 MPG is possible in fact youíre likely getting it on your highway drives. Unfortunately, it is being obscured by the absolutely horrible city/local MPG
2. The city/local MPG is likely WAY under the conservative 29 estimate and could be as low as 18 to 20 MPG. Thatís right a tiny car like this may only be getting 18 to 20 in the cityÖhow is that possible?
3. Every organization that is testing the car, as well as many posters here, is focused on the wrong MPG rating. Itís the city/local driving MPG that is causing your overall MPG to look so bad. There is also to much focus on point in time trips instead of everyday commutes
4. It does not take much city/local driving to completely trash your overall MPG. Just look at the impact from that 1 mile drive from the ICC to my home. Or look at the impact from minor hills on the ICC (a brand new and relatively flat highway)
5. The colder the weather the worse the MPG seems to be. Why didnít my MPG recover to 40ish the following morning? Clearly there was more highway MPG to offset the city/local MPG, right? I conclude that the highway and city/local MPGs must be lower when itís cold. Perhaps significantly
6. The car appears to have no intelligence when it comes to creating or maintaining MPG. If it did, I believe I would not see such a dramatic fluctuations from hills or from one mile of local driving
7. The ECO mode should do a better job of offsetting the ďLeadĒ foot syndrome. Does not take much of a press of the pedal to achieve a big reaction in RPM
Now this is by no means a scientific test but it does help me to rationalize my results. At this point I guess have to accept that my average MPG will not be as high as expected for my driving situation. I do, however, remain hopeful that MPG will improve as we move into the warmer sprint/summer/fall.
I also hope this information forces the conversation to focus more city/local MPG and why is it so bad for a tiny lightweight car.
I will always feel that Hyundai, and other companies are using puffery and misinformation to mislead consumers by emphasizing unrealistic MPG ratings that are not consistently achievable by most drivers unless they are at the 100% highway level.
#209 of 774 Re: Lies = Less MPGs [avarice1]
Feb 08, 2012 (3:42 am)
I agree 100%.....the best I've gotten so far is 25.5 MPG, thats combined city and highway, it's ridiculous, I did the same exact driving with a 2009 Corolla and got an average of 28 sometimes 30. Plus after driving this car for almost 2 months, I find the ride isn't that great. A lot of road noise, poor handling, weak suspension. There's no comparison to the Corolla. Hyundai does a good job with styling and all the the little extras but it doesn't do what it's supposed to. I bought this car for one reason and that is gas mileage. There's alot of better cars I could have bought and gotten this gas mileage. Maybe we should start a class action action suit.
#210 of 774 Re: Hyundai Elantra Real World MPG 2012 [jmorv]
Feb 08, 2012 (6:22 am)
I don't know what the computer has to do with gas mileage. Whether the computer is correct or not the gas mileage is still the same. The only way to check gas mileage is fill your tank, drive, record your mileage, fill again, then divide miles by gallons. Bottom line the car gets terrible gas mileage.
#211 of 774 Re: Lies = Less MPGs [knocker81]
by Kirstie@Edmunds HOST
Feb 08, 2012 (7:28 am)
We don't permit using the forums to organize legal action, but that aside, what would a suit entail? In order to prevail, the class would have to demonstrate that Hyundai knowingly & deliberately deceived consumers and somehow "rigged" a vehicle sent to the EPA for testing to achieve a higher MPG rating than is reasonably possible to achieve. Hyundai didn't create the EPA MPG numbers - that's what every manufacturer puts on the sticker. Some consumers are getting within range of the EPA estimates, so obviously it's not impossible. I don't think you'd find a lawyer in the land to take such a case, as it's nearly impossible to prove.
Plus, as a consumer, if the suit were settled in the consumers' favor, you'd be looking at something like $200 three years from now, or a $500 coupon off the purchase of your next Hyundai. That's how these things tend to go.
#212 of 774 Re: My experience for what its worth [eweiner]
Feb 08, 2012 (9:24 am)
totally agree with your comments. We have a 4000 lb 2010 Buick and the 3200 lb 2012 Sonata. City mileage very close on both cars since we have the same terrain with both cars. 20-22 on Buick and 20-24 on Sonata. The variation depends on amount of stop and go not speed.
The big difference is the highway MPG. Speed also is the biggest factor on the highway but the Buick is 28-29 and the Sonata is 35-38 totally dependent upon speed if no big hills. The 20% difference is totally driven by weight & speed IMO.
So we agree with your conclusion. The EPA #'s must be some freeway or not stop and go that affects all cars except the hybrids that are also lower weight across the board.
Changing your driving route to include more freeway (if available to you)will do more to increase mileage. The averages posted are driven by the specific conditions mainly in city driving that affects the actual versus EPA.
#213 of 774 Re: My experience for what its worth [eweiner]
Feb 08, 2012 (9:19 am)
Two key points here:
4. It does not take much city/local driving to completely trash your overall MPG.
5. The colder the weather the worse the MPG seems to be.
And yes, these points have been brought up here before.
I get to experience these first-hand all the time, because I live where it can be 50 one day and below zero a couple of days later. FE does really suffer in cold weather. Also, it's real easy for city driving to ruin FE. It's possible to adjust for it to some extent, but it takes some attention. The keys are to keep your foot off the accelerator as much as possible by anticipating stops and coasting (in gear) as much as possible, e.g. on downgrades. Also shut off the engine if you'll be stopped for more than a couple of minutes, e.g. waiting for someone. Using basic techniques like that I routinely get 25%+ better FE on my wife's Hyundai than she does. (She doesn't use ANY fuel-saving techniques.)
But if you have to make lots of stops and are stuck in heavy traffic (meaning a low average speed) a lot of the time... your mpg will suck with a non-hybrid. Weight has little to do with it. The mpg of any car when it's stopped is zero.
#214 of 774 Re: Lies = Less MPGs [knocker81]
Feb 08, 2012 (11:11 am)
I also totally agree. i have 8700miles on my 2012 and continue to get 20-22mpg in all city driving, so much for the dealer statements that the mileage will get better as the mileage increases. I have owned 2003 and 2004 Elantras and got about the same. The all highway drives with cruise on can get 35-40mpg,but the average will quickly fall with stop and go city driving. I have been using the Eco mode all the time and decided to turn it off to see any changes. I have found that the city mpg has increased a few mpg 2-3 but i attribute this to my wife and her heavy foot. There is a marked difference in accerlation when it is off. I believe that when she drives she does not have to press down on the gas petal as hard thus the better mileage. Again how you drive does make a difference. I could not agree more with you as to the horrible suspension this car has. Here in New York City the pothole capital of the world, my teeth can rattle from the way this car handles any imperfection in the roads. There are times that i wonder if there are any shocks in this car. I have read that Hyundai improved the suspension on the 2012 after there where complaints on the 2011. They could not have done much. For those that drive in other states where the highways and roads are well maintained they may never notice this fault. Take this car to some poor maintained roads and see what i am talking about. This car has some serous cab rock and roll on those kind of roads.
#215 of 774 Re: Lies = Less MPGs [kirstie_h]
Feb 08, 2012 (12:09 pm)
AS I understand it Hyundai did not send the Elantra to the EPA for testing. They tested it themselves and sent the results to the EPA.
There is a recent court case by a women who took Honda to small claims court over exaggerated MPG claims. She won nearly 10K in damages.
#216 of 774 Re: Lies = Less MPGs [eweiner]
by Kirstie@Edmunds HOST
Feb 08, 2012 (12:23 pm)
Well, see... that's part of my point. If you look at the class action proposed settlement, it's almost nothing. You're almost always better off pursuing some sort of remedy on your own, whether legal or by working with dealerships/manufacturers.
I believe the basis of her win was tied to her ability to prove, via documentation, that mileage decreased following the software update provided by Honda (which is what's happening with these vehicles). She may have "won," technically, but she won't get anything yet. The case was immediately appealed. It is widely believed that anything tied to "false advertising" won't be upheld, though the post-software update reduction in MPG probably will.
Don't get me wrong - I am not disputing anyone's claim that they're not getting expected MPGs, and I don't ride with anyone so I can't say whether it's a vehicle issue or a driving issue. Some people have reported getting close to the EPA numbers, others haven't. I can't tell you why that is.
#217 of 774 Re: My experience for what its worth (Devil in details) [eweiner]
Feb 09, 2012 (8:49 am)
Good post. Since people have such high expectations regarding their FE, it is often hard to tell if people have legitimate complaints or not. Thus it is critical that details be provided when discussing real world FE. Critical facts like how long have you owned the car, its mileage, type of driving done, real speeds driven, real amount of stop-and-go traffic driven, type fuel used, whether you are really trying to eco-mile (higher tire pressures, coasting to stoplights, etc.), etc. Seems like there are some posting here who expect to get 40 mpg driving 75 mph or higher on freeway; that ain't gonna happen! Or who expect 29 mpg driving in heavy city traffic with lots of stop lights/signs; that ain't gonna happen. Or those who have a lead foot and want to accelerate quickly all the time. People have to be realistic about what their car can do FE-wise, esp. in winter and with ethanol. And be honest about how they are driving (e.g., avg mph).