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1337

New Station in Mazon, IL

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1337-thanks for the reply; that is interesting.  The rental cars that don't have FFV badging-does the check engine light (CEL) come on?  Of course, you may not be running the fuel low before refueling, and if enough gasoline is in there it may not. 

 

I'm not surprised by the van's (FFV?) 13 mpg's on E85.  Most of these larger vehicles don't do well at all on any fuel.  Our Tahoe is "supposed" to get 18 mpg's according to EPA on gasoline, but we average 15 mpg's.  13 mpg's on E85.

 

That's good - 33 mpg's for the Sonata 2.4L on E85.  Hopefully that's good signs for small engines in FFV's to come, even more so for those with high compression ratios and turbo chargers.   :)

 

Mercedes has several FFV's, though not the 2002.  2007 C230 and 2008-2009 C300.  If you're interested in a new or pre-owned at some point (probably some terrific deals out there!).

 

http://www.e85fuel.com/information/ffvs/mercedes_ffvs2009.pdf

 

The check engine light did come on the Chevrolet Express, and it was a somewhat bright, annoying light.  Fortunately, I had my scangauge II (http://www.scangauge.com/) plugged into the van's OBD-II port.  I used the scangauge to shut off the check-engine light. 

 

The Sonata's check engine light never did come on.

 

I'm not in any particular hurry to replace the C230, since it only has about 55k miles on it.  I think if I bought an other entry luxury car, the Saab 9-3 would be top on my list.  Sure, it's not as refined as a BMW or Mercedes, but the 9-3 gets KILLED on depreciation.  I feel sorry for those who buy a 9-3 new, but it's a great bargain on the used market.  A ~'04 9-3 2.0T with a manual transmission should turn in well over 30 MPG, too.

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Quote from 1337;

 

:D "I think if I bought an other entry luxury car, the Saab 9-3 would be top on my list.  Sure, it's not as refined as a BMW or Mercedes, but the 9-3 gets KILLED on depreciation.  I feel sorry for those who buy a 9-3 new, but it's a great bargain on the used market.  An '04 9-3 2.0T with a manual transmission should turn in well over 30 MPG, too."

 

That is what I did- picked up a fleet/lease '04 9.3 2T Aero with 6 speed manual.

On interstate cruising I can easily maintain 31-32 mpg on E10, E20, or E30 with AC going full blast. Also get similar mpg on two lane roads but drop down to 24-26 with short trip city mix. This car gets parked in the winter since the Aero design gives it a front air dam with about 3-4" clearance-- not a great snowplow.

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That is what I did- picked up a fleet/lease '04 9.3 2T Aero with 6 speed manual.

On interstate cruising I can easily maintain 31-32 mpg on E10, E20, or E30 with AC going full blast. Also get similar mpg on two lane roads but drop down to 24-26 with short trip city mix. This car gets parked in the winter since the Aero design gives it a front air dam with about 3-4" clearance-- not a great snowplow.

 

Great minds think alike, yeah?

 

What's your winter car?

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What kind of a FFV are you using and what is your mpg experience?

 

I actually don't own an FFV.  I drive a 2002 Mercedes C230 coupe.  I never run E85 in my own car.  However, I regularly rent cars for business travel, and I always run E85 in rental cars, "flexfuel" badging or not. 

 

On Friday, I drove a rented a 2009 3/4 ton, 4.8L Chevrolet Express cargo van to Indiana.  I averaged 13 MPG on the trip, and my tank contained mostly E85.  I drove gently and slowly.  The van would probably get about 18 mpg on E10 pump gasoline.

 

A few weeks ago, I rented a 2010 Hyundai Sonata 2.4L.  I burned E85 for most of the trip, and I averaged 33mpg.  The EPA figure is only 31, but I did some pretty serious hypermiling on that trip, with some pulse-and-glide driving.

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Hey 1337, interesting on the Sonata. I'll bet it was a 2009 though, the 2010s are not available...just going into production like this week I think.

 

Anyway I have a 2009 2.4L and it runs great up to E30. Have not pushed it beyond that blend just yet although I do intend to someday, but I now have 6000 miles on it and never a CEL or hiccup whatsoever on E20-30 :)

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Hey 1337, interesting on the Sonata. I'll bet it was a 2009 though, the 2010s are not available...just going into production like this week I think.

 

Anyway I have a 2009 2.4L and it runs great up to E30. Have not pushed it beyond that blend just yet although I do intend to someday, but I now have 6000 miles on it and never a CEL or hiccup whatsoever on E20-30 :)

Hey 1337, interesting on the Sonata. I'll bet it was a 2009 though, the 2010s are not available...just going into production like this week I think.

 

Anyway I have a 2009 2.4L and it runs great up to E30. Have not pushed it beyond that blend just yet although I do intend to someday, but I now have 6000 miles on it and never a CEL or hiccup whatsoever on E20-30 :)

 

It was definitely a 2010.  The registration and insurance information in the glove box said 2010, and the rental car keyfob listed it as a "2010 Sonata."

 

I'm not very nice to rental cars.  I completely removed the airbox and air filter, and I drove that car over 700 miles in 2 days.  I figured the air filter delete might net me 1/2 an MPG.  Man, the engine sounded way better with an unrestricted air intake.  It made a snorty, truck-like growl. 

 

Never buy a used rental car, and don't ever remove the air filter on a car you care about, though.

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That is what I did- picked up a fleet/lease '04 9.3 2T Aero with 6 speed manual.

On interstate cruising I can easily maintain 31-32 mpg on E10, E20, or E30 with AC going full blast. Also get similar mpg on two lane roads but drop down to 24-26 with short trip city mix. This car gets parked in the winter since the Aero design gives it a front air dam with about 3-4" clearance-- not a great snowplow.

 

Great minds think alike, yeah?

 

What's your winter car?

 

The winter car is the exact opposite-- 2000 Yukon XL 4wd gas/alcho- hogging-go-anywhere pig that makes my wife feel safe :D  We do not drive it many miles. Bought it with 70,000 miles in 2002 just rolled over 157,000 and that included several family vacations and some periods of time as primary vehicle when the daughter had the '01 4 speed Saturn (it could do 42 hwy).

 

One thing my wife and I have learned is that older people do not all buy big cars for safety (though that may be what they say)---cruisers are easy to get in and out of and are easier on bad backs. Let's just say we have become a bit less "eco" out of necessity. The Saab is fine, the Saturn comfort range was 200 miles for me and 0 miles for her, and we can take the Yukon to the moon if we want :D

 

One tip on the Saab though-- from what I have seen others such as Buzzcut--37% alcohol will throw a CEL. I think with the turbo, Saab played the ECU warning light lean code game a little tighter than in my Yukon or Saturn where 60% short term would not trigger a code. Once my 100,000 mile warranty is done I plan to reprogram the ECU--reportedly my fuel pump and injectors are already oversized but would need confirmation.

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LOL ....note to self (avoid purchasing rentals)

 

I do use the K&N air filters because as Dan M recommends as I do run higher percentages than 10 all the time.

 

The 2010 sonatas withe the 2.4Ls will have something called a "direct injected" engine...as I am not a techhie, I only have a basic idea of what this is, but it's supposed to be more efficient than the standard 2.4L in my 2009.

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