'88 Honda Accord ref: gas mileage ques. 12-18-2010


I am following up re: above referenced title per “the chumps were stumped.”

I tried to email during the show but was not able to register in time.

When I bought my brand new 96 H-Accord the salesman told me that if I wanted to maximize my gas mileage I should gas up with Shell gas.

I bought gas at many non-Shell stations to test this theory and sure enough my gas mileage was ALWAYS approx. 25% better with Shell gas - 32 vs. 24 hwy and 24 vs. 18 city.


it always took 2 tanks of gas before the FULL effects of the change would plateau.

So, for instance, after one tank of non-Shell gas was added to the Shell gas in my nearly empty tank, my mileage might be 28 & 21; and after 2 tanks, approx. 24 & 18 and vice-versa.

I had the car for 12 years - 100,000 miles. I have always checked gas mileage after every fill-up with every car I have owned and the Shell theory proved to be fact EVERY time!

I moved from Ohio for 3 years to a location where Shell gas was not available and I never got more than 24hwy and 18city. But when I returned - after about 3 tanks of gas, my mileage was back to 32hwy and 24city!

In case you are wondering - per the Honda dealer, I always bought the least expensive Shell gas variety.

Over the years, a friend of mine who was an engineer for an oil refinery in Texas told me the same thing re: gas that you stated on your show … it’s all the same.

But he could not figure out why my gas mileage would differ so greatly. So, he did a little research. ( in 2003)

Sure enough, he learned that Shell puts additives in their gas that improve engine performance and gas mileage; and,he

retracted his former comments!


I wonder if the caller fills her gas tank with Shell gas in Colorado but not anywhere else enroute from CO to L.A. and back?!

If she does, she should try to buy only Shell gas enroute fr CO to L.A. and back to see if it makes a difference!! It always has for me with Honda …


not so much for the 2009 Toyota Corolla that I had for 2 1/2 years. Of course it also had defective brakes, cruise control, acceleration and stability control and nearly ended my life twice!! The dealer bought it back, thank goodness!

Then, I bought another Honda Accord - a 2010 model. It drives beautifully - brakes operate efficiently, tight steering, heavy enough to have good control on curves, has good acceleration for highway driving, great visibility without blind spots, many air bags & is comfortable for my back and head, even though the seat is pretty darn hard. And I wish they would make the rear view mirror wider!

Outside appearance is usually the least of my concerns but I actually like the appearance of this one. The design is quite attractive to me. It is “Mist metallic champagne” outside with tan interior. Overall, a great car, so far.

As you have probably surmised by now, I view cars as a necessity to get from point A to point B. I choose cars that are supposed to be dependable, low maintenance and long-lasting with potentially good resale value.

I would not be surprised to see many more “issues and events” with the 2009 Toyotas - am wondering how many people have experienced problems and not voiced them?! The Service Manager at the Toyota dealership I worked with (10th in U.S. re sales AND service) was very kind, understanding and helpful. He has been there many years and said he had never come across a Toyota that had as many problems as mine!

My new Honda is only 2,700 miles old - with 2,200 highway miles, so not yet “used” enough to test the theory.

I hope this suggestion works for the 12-18-2010 caller re: her 88 Honda Accord gas mileage in CO vs. L.Angeles.

Please feel free to forward this email to the caller if you have her email address.

Best Wishes for a Joyful Holiday Season.

Betty in Cincinnati



I have visited multiple large empty parking lots covered in ice/snow to experiment with the anti-skid / stability feature on my car.

I grew up in a snow state (Nebr) and I seem to have better control of the car without this feature turned on. I wonder if I am doing something wrong?!

Any chance you could discuss this on your show, i.e.:

How it is supposed to work?

How a driver is supposed to brake when

using this feature?

What is supposed to happen after brakes

are applied?

How does it usually sound / why is it so

loud / is it supposed to sound

like … thump thump thump thump

thump etc. in rapid sequence?

Should it ever be engaged for heavy rain?

Thank you in advance, for any discussion you offer re: this topic.

Happy Holidays,

Betty in Cincinnati

I wonder how much of that difference could have been simply different octane ratings?

Good point.
I do not know.

I always buy the least expensive of the choices - no matter what station I am at. I do not purchase gas with the corn additive (available in Nebr.)

Shell makes one of the top-tier gas…

The reason they recommended Shell was because that was one of (or the only one) in your area that’s a top-tier gas.

I haven’t experienced exactly what you’re experiencing…But my wifes Accords (87 and 96) and my pathfinders all ran LOUSY (drop in gas mileage and performance) on Mobil or Getty gas. I could always tell when my daughter filled up one of the vehicles with Mobil…The vehicles seemed to run good on almost any other gas. Don’t see much of a difference in my 4runner or my wifes Lexus…But those engines are much more powerful then our previous cars so it’s harder to notice.

I do not buy this astronomical fuel mileage improvement due to Shell gasoline for one minute.
The following questions could be posed.
Why is every refiner not using this miracle ingredient?
If what you claim is true then why hasn’t the Federal Gov. dropped the hammer years ago and forced every refiner to use this miracle ingredient?

Shell gasoline has never made one iota of difference in fuel mileage with any of my cars; in spite of advertising claims and gaudy banners by the pumps.

Many, many years ago I had a 1959 Studebaker Lark that got excellent gas mileage for the time and I tracked every tankful.I got better gas mileage with Shell or Amaco than anything else but only by 1 or 2 mpg.
Unfortunately neither one is in my area any more.

Do you know which companies make top tier gasoline other than Shell?