Not many cars to combat high fuel prices


#1

I wish there were more fuel efficient cars out there to help offset the sting of high gas prices. The average person has to spend a lot of money on a newer hybrid vehicle only to be hit with big depreciation costs which will eat up and fuel savings. If one wants to avoid depreciation, he/she has little choice in reliable older vehicles but to get a low mileage 20yr old grandma car that’s fully depreciated but is a gas guzzler. Plus, some cars that look small and fuel efficient only get a little over 20mpg. My 1992 Honda Accord only gets 22mpg combined city/highway and it’s a 2.2 liter 4cyl engine with 140hp. I used to have a grandma car 1988 Buick LeSabre 3.8 liter V6 205hp that got 20mpg combined. The old Accords looks like the Corollas of today and today’s Corollas get 33mpg. My friend has a 2000 Toyota Corolla and it’s peppier than my Accord and gets better gas mileage. I wish there were more options in older fuel efficient cars for the average consumer. What’s going on here?


#2

Today’s Corollas are rated with 2008 fuel efficiency testing which yields lower numbers than the old EPA rating got. As a result, it’s easy to meet or exeed these ratings. For example, my 2008 Yaris is EPA rated at 29/36 but my best tank so far yielded 45.29 MPG. This was without using extreme hypermiling techniques like pulse and glide, which is accelerating to 60 mph more or less at full throttle and then switching the engine off and coasting in neutral until the car is only going 45 mph or so and then letting the clutch out and repeating the process over and over.


#3

I hear you…I’m disapointed that “someone” doesn’t offer a 4 cly diesel in a compact PU. They don’t have to be 50 stae leagal…here’s hoping for the flood gates to open on the Euro. diesels, assuming they can be adapted, in the next few years.
Anybody heard the latest ?

Cheney family is going to be a “very” wealthy when he leaves office and can start drawing from his big oil trust…thanks to you and me.


#4

you can get milage increases as much as 40% by careful driving and proper car maintenance.

recent posts on this topic:
http://community.cartalk.com/posts/list/840609.page
http://community.cartalk.com/posts/list/837610.page


#5

The VPs family is already very wealthy. Makes me angry to imagine how these folks profit from the rest of us . .but I can’t prove that so I’m not going to agonize over it. You can’t deny our American use of oil however . . . I drive every day, city and highway . . . and can’t believe the number of big V-8 trucks and SUVs tromping their gas at red lights, passing me on the interstate at 65 mph like I’m standing still (they must be going 80), driving with one person in big, gas guzzlers . . . and using gas as if it was ten cents a gallon. Go figure. But don’t just complain about the VP, or Bush, or US drivers of big SUVs . . . the world is suffering from a petro crunch. The only real way to combat this problem (IMO) is to find a renewable fuel to power our internal combustion engines. I, for one . . don’t want to go backwards and have to drive less, turn the thermostat down to 60, and so forth . . . I’d rather enjoy cool cars, live in a warm house and pay reasonable proces for products shipped cross-country. Technology WILL solve this problem, IMO. Rocketman


#6

Don’t blame it on Bush, or Cheeney. Blame it on Americans. If you think political heads rolled when Clinton signed the Brady Bill, just wait and see what happens when the next POTUS tries to force Americans to drive tiny, slow cars.

I think an appropriate bumper sticker for the average American would read “End global warming now!! but don’t make me drive a tiny, slow car!”


#7

The general public wants clean air and cars that are loaded down with safety features and every bell and whistle under the sun so the mileage is going to suffer a bit.
Make a small, lightweight vehicle with no garbage and the fuel mileage will go up considerably. As an example you could consider the early/mid 80s Subarus.

The 1.8L Subaru with a 5 speed manual tranaxle would get 38-41 MPG on the highway and that’s WITHOUT fuel injection. That was with the use of an EEC controlled carburetor. Of course, people had to actually use their arms to roll the windows up and down on most of these cars. :slight_smile:


#8

Your Subie probably has Armstrong power steering, too.


#9

Oh, how we suffered back then! :wink:

I have ridden a lot of motorcycles that didn’t have electric starters including a 500 cc one cylinder bike, now THAT really separates the men from the boys.


#10

Was that 4-60 air conditioning? Roll down the four windows and drive 60 mph? Try and buy a car without power windows these days. Were you Subie tech OKy? Rocketman


#11

What a fickle public. A couple years ago everyone wanted a roomy SUV that they sat high in and felt safe in. That’s why they started making escalades and Navigators. Even the guys making little cars got in on the action with their own SUVs. Now the price goes up a dollar and everyone wants something smaller. Gotta be tough to be in the car business these days. I just buy what I like and get 25 mpg with my Buick which is fully depreciated and competes pretty well on a cost per mile basis with the econo cars.


#12

We all have to be in on the economy issue and make it a personal sacrifice issue. Or the government has to make us suffer. Not much chance of that happening. There are many things keeping us from having good fuel economy. One of them is pollution controls. the other is power. The people want powerful and fast cars so the car companies making them have given us what we will buy. A company wants to stay in business. Now that fuel prices are high, we may get the breakthrough that we need. I’m waiting for the small car made for two people that has some room inside it. The car made for one person should be good too. I like those trike motorcycles too. They weigh nothing and could get tremendous gas mileage. I hope that those things start getting made soon. You could carry a lot on them and you wouldn’t strain yourself by changing a tire when it goes flat.


#13

You think SUV sales have dropped off much? doubt it.


#14

Back in the day I owned a 85 Dodge colt that had a EPA mileage rating of 37 city 41 highway, and even with a revised EPA mileage of 31 city 37 highway, it still beats anything out there that is not a hybrid.

Now if only Honda would import the Fit with the 1.3 liter i-DSI gas engine to the US, and if it at least matches or beats those fuel mileage numbers I would be at the dealer buying one today, but till then…


#15

When people stop buying the gas guzzlers they will make the cars like you are looking for, but people keep buying bigger and bigger.

BTW Don’t assume that a hybrid is more fuel efficient. Sometimes that is the case, but often it is not. I support the idea of them, but for now hybrids and the E-85s should be considered experimental. They are not bad and I believe it is good to get a number of them on the roads to evaluate and improve the technology, but they are not really the solution as of yet.


#16

While I agree that we all want more fuel-efficient cars, I have to point out to the OP that something is very much wrong if he is only getting 22 mpg from that 2.2 liter, 140 hp, 4 cylinder Accord.

I had a '92 Accord wagon, and I regularly got 27-28 mpg in “combined” city/highway driving. My current car, an '02 Subaru is heavier than that Accord, has a 3 liter 6-cylinder with 212 hp, I regularly get 21-22 mpg in combined city/highway driving, and I don’t exactly drive like the little old lady from Pasadena. A friend of mine has an '01 Accord 4 cylinder, which is also bigger and heavier than the '92 Accord, and he regularly gets 26-27 mpg in combined city/highway driving.

I would strongly suggest to the OP that he needs to look into maintenance for his car, and/or he needs to modify his driving style/driving habits. There is no way that his car should be getting only 22 mpg.