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Ford Escape, Car Buying, Car Comparisons, SUV
#349 of 650 Gas Mileage
Nov 11, 2012 (6:31 am)
I'm not singling out anyone here, so don't reply like I'm talking about you, I'm making a general statement based on my experience with my FWD, 2.0L Titanium. It's all about driving style. Folks who accelerate aggressively will obviously see lower mpg's. You have to drive these turbos with some finesse and stay out of turbo boost until you need it. At stop lights a very light foot on the accelerator helps, and on the freeway, stay at a constant moderate speed. When you pass on the freeway, you don't need to floor it, this car will take off with a slight push of the accelerator. Use the deceleration fuel cut off when ever possible, coasting to stop lights and on exit ramps will improve your mpg's. I know that in different regions of the Country, people drive differently, but the car behind you can only go as fast as you're going. Here in the Upper Midwest, we tend to drive more slowly and you won't get harassed or threatened if you take off from stops gently or drive the speed limit.
I drive the same route to work every weekday, 1 mile city to a semi crowded freeway, 7 miles at 50-60 mph, with slow downs for slow and merging traffic and then 1 mile to my office, under those conditions my average is currently 25.5 to 26.3 mpg's and it was a little higher when temps were warmer. I took a road trip this summer from Minnesota to Louisiana, mostly on 2 lane highways, but some interstate and 4-lane bypass. I drove between 55 and 65 on the way down and I got as high as 38 mpg's, but generally got 34-36 mpg's. I'd say 75% of the time I was traveling 60-62 mph. I was told by the service manager at my dealership that the sweet spot for the 2.0L and the 6 speed transmission is 63 mph. On the way home from Baton Rouge to Minneapolis I drove Interstate the entire way and depending on the weather (it rained for the stretch through LA and MS), at the speed limit of 70 or 2 mph above, I got 33 mpg and as much as 36 mpg at slightly slower speeds. Whenever I drive the Interstate I use the cruise control, except in hilly terrain and drive 2 mph above the posted, I anticipate when I'll need to pass slower traffic and pass well in advance of the cars traveling fast in the left lane. I accelerate slowly and evenly and try to never go below what my cruise is set at. When I have to cancel the cruise and resume, I accelerate evenly to speed and then resume the cruise rather than hitting resume and having the engine rev to speed.
I enjoy a good road trip and have traveled coast to coast and border to border multiple times and over the years I have developed a good driving style. Unless there is something obviously wrong with your car, decent mpg's are attainable with a consistent and conservative driving style.
#350 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [tim156]
Nov 11, 2012 (10:24 am)
I would agree that around 24mpg is real world mileage, at least here in the DC suburbs. Most folks don't fill up next to the interstate, then get on the interstate and drive till its empty, then exit and fill up, then repeat that process. I have yet to go on a long road trip to really test out those highway mpg, but right now I'm at 23 to 24 mpg.
#351 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [escapeism]
Nov 11, 2012 (10:43 am)
I would think 23-24 would be pretty good combined mpg's for the DC area. Lots of stop and go, heavy traffic and fast freeway speeds. I have been to the DC area a couple of times and my experience was that they'll run you off the road if you're only driving 60-65 on the highway. You are right on with your fill up analogy. My guess is people most often fill up in the city or burbs driving home or to work and on surface streets. With idling, stop and go, slower speeds and errands, it's most likely you're never going to go above 18 or so until you log some constant speed highway miles.
#352 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [tim156]
Nov 11, 2012 (1:18 pm)
You're implying that special effort, attention, is required of the driver in order to attain FE in/near the EPA range.
But that is NOT what the EPA intends nor do they test for.
I will probably never own an EcoBoost for numerous reasons but if I did the first thing I would do is change the "gain" of the gas pedal position as it relates to throttle plate position. I suspect, strongly so, that the throttle plate reaches the WOT position with about 1/2 gas pedal depression. From that point on the turbo speed is regulated and thereby used to provide the engine throttling (un-throttling??) function.
I think I would begin by "wiring" the wastegate fully open and drive that way for a reasonably long period. Long enough to determine just how good the FE might be even with a detuned (10:1 compression ratio vs the DFI standard of 12-14:1) DFI engine and no turbo boost. Also get an idea of the level (enough?) of HP/torque with no boost.
#353 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [wwest]
Nov 11, 2012 (3:57 pm)
You're absolutely right that that is not what the EPA intends or test for- it has *nothing* really to do with what FE *any* driver will achieve with *their* driving. It's all about comparison- being able to compare Car A to Car B and Car C when shopping on the lot. NONE of them is really rated for *my* driving, *your* driving, or *anyone else's* driving. Just a simple comparison. It might help some of those that can't understand what it's really about to say that maybe they should have a flat ratings sheet- this car is ranked number 1 for highway, number 6 for city, and number 4 for combined mileage among all it's peers. That way, nobody misunderstands and really thinks that the numbers are what they 'should' be getting. Only that, driving Car A will return better fuel economy than Car B, in most situations.
#354 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [tim156]
Nov 11, 2012 (4:06 pm)
Amen. Some situations are going to make it hard to get near the EPA numbers, but those numbers aren't really there to tell you what you're going to get, they're to tell us how this or that car ranks compared to the others on a 'standard' test loop (city / highway / combined being merely labels, and not really our city, our highway, or our combined). Nonetheless, many of us will equal or exceed the EPA numbers with little effort. Some don't drive in a way that will- and there are a LOT of those people out there- I see them on the roads with me all the time, whether in Prius or Camaro SS. And some traffic, road conditions, etc. make it hard for even those that *do* drive conservatively (which I doubt most people complaining of FE in their cars really *do*, but that doesn't mean none do).
#356 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [steve_]
Nov 11, 2012 (4:12 pm)
Thanks Steve. Those are great articles, illustrating exactly what we're saying- it's actually very rare nowadays for the cars to be at fault. Most of the time poor fuel economy, especially when people start comparing what they're getting to the window sticker, comes down to one of the items in that first article, and pretty much in the same order they list- conditions, driver style, etc.
#357 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [steve_]
Nov 11, 2012 (5:00 pm)
Those are good articles and excellent advice.
People who complain that they are getting bad fuel economy never want to blame themselves, so there must be something wrong with the car.
#358 of 650 Re: Gas Mileage [tim156]
by steve_ HOST
Nov 11, 2012 (5:07 pm)
I'm on a road trip and only got ~21 on my last tank in my van (all time highest hit 29.9).
But I live in the deer infested two lane boonies and only get to drive 80 once every few months and it's kind of fun to bomb down the Interstate sometimes.