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gasisoutrageous

New mileage record!

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After running out of fuel yesterday, it was a huge surprise when my car only needed 3.615 gallons of E85 after 132 miles of driving. That's 36.51 mpg... a new record! This time I know it was E85 I put in (there is some doubt as to what I put in when I recorded my previous record in December).

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37!  That is impressive.  Right now I'm getting just under 21 on my Fusion, with a mix of city, highway, and some short trips.  It goes up as the weather warms up.  Near 24 in the summer on this same route.  Mine is purely a commuter car doing the same route, day in and day out. (didn't mean for that to rhyme)

 

what are the bogus EPA mileage numbers for your vehicle? 

 

It is staggering how many people in the auto industry DON'T know that the e85 numbers are simply theoretical mathematic calculations with no basis on any real world testing.  I tried to explain this to a dealer once, he responded with a chuckle as if I was insanely ignorant with eyes rolling "Yah right, like they would be allowed to do THAT, all those numbers are factual data tested and verified in laboratories.  You can't argue with facts."

 

I responded telling him what numbers I get with e85 on my FFV, and having him look up what the EPA numbers were...  he then pointed out that I'm obviously not calculating it right, or my miles driven were not "truly" city, highway or combined...

 

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I find the EPA's E85 numbers funny, the mileage on my 200 has been better on E85 than the EPA claims yt gas has been pretty much right on the money on gas. Also is annoying that the EPA sets the spread at $.30/gal yet you look at a better than estimated mileage with better than suggested spread, I come outnmuch farther ahead than the EPA site would say I should be. I also find it funny that people who use the EPA "numbers" as an excuse not to use the fuel would be first to trash for gasoline costing so much and other BS excuses.

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I will offer my congratulations on achieving such high mpg numbers.  

Questions:

  • Where did these 150 miles of driving occur?  Highway-city-mix-what percent of each if any?
  • What was the outdoor temperature when this event was going on?
  • Can you tell us about your vehicle and its ability to maximize mpg regardless of fuel composition?   In other words does it have fuel cut off while sitting at a stoplight?
  • How is your driving style?
  • Can you explain why this tank has higher than expected mpgs when compared to the average tank mpg ratings?

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Husker... the numbers for my car are 13 city/19 highway on E85, and 19 city/26 highway on gas.

 

What I'm wondering is the effect that consistently using E85, and just E85, has had on my car and the mileage. I have to do A LOT of idling and cold starts to get anywhere near 13 mpg. I'm consistently getting 17-20, with occasional numbers above 22. In the summer, my numbers are higher as well. I would find that I did poorly if I get a number below 20.

 

Billy-

I will start by adding the disclaimer that I was working with a tailwind. I was essentially following the warm, moist air northward (that would eventually create severe weather I encountered that night). The drive was from northeast Tennessee to central Kentucky... a drive that is not quite flat. It wasn't THAT mountainous, but lots of ups and downs. That being said, I kept my car's speed consistent at 65 (remember, I use cruise control as if it's my job), and I avoided changes in speed. My car (along with Joe's) have a feature called Electronic Stability Program, or ESP. All I know about it is that it's supposed to be a safety feature. It wastes fuel. So I turned that off. Avoided stops, and I even slowed down to 60 when I got near the station. I usually drive 65 now, to help fuel economy a bit. I'll elaborate a bit more when I get home.

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Basically, the outdoor temps were just below 70 for most of that leg of the trip. Very little city - 10% if that. As mentioned, I use cruise control excessively. I turn off ESP, and I try to minimize A/C use if possible. There aren't very many features in my car that can maximize fuel economy. However, the fact that I have only used E85 for 14k miles now must have had an effect. No hybrid tech on my car... but boy, do I wish there was (thus, no stop/start like what you've alluded to). My driving style is aggressive in the city, and relatively smooth on the highway. That being said, I have become very good at timing Stoplights (thus my previous plate LYTTIMR), and I've been paying attention to fuel economy long since before I learned how to drive.

 

As for why this tank was much higher, it's hard to say. There was little city driving, and I kept the RPM level consistently 200 or so lower than it would have been at 73 mph, the speed at which I had been driving. This tank had no stops, no cold starts, and next to no city driving. It is possible to stretch a tank to 600 miles under the right conditions.

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I bought it at the Thorntons on Elkhorn Road in Lexington KY, which was one of the stations that added E85 and B20 as part of the I-75 Clean Fuels Corridor project. I filled up the next morning, after driving around in the severe weather they had that night, and I got down to 19 mpg. As far as that particular station, I do not have a sample to prove E85 is what I bought. However, I do still have a 2 gallon can I filled at the Shell in Ocoee FL the day I ran out. I plan on showing it to my safety manager to prove it was E85 (that tank set my previous record of 36.51 mpg). It does smell like ethanol.

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