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Real world mileage with 2.5 and CVT

easypareasypar ColoradoPosts: 173
I didn't see a thread dealing with actual mileage on the newer Legacy/Outback with the CVT so I thought I'd start one. I'm pretty sure the EPA rating is higher than with the old 4AT so let's see what we're actually getting.

I wasn't sure how "full" the dealer had mine on delivery but I filled it 4 days later and had 25+/-, which was all in town and some of it in snow. On the next tank I drove it up into the mountains, we live at 5100 feet and went over some high passes (through the Eisenhower tunnel and 10,000 at Vail pass) and then back again 3 days later. Most of that was at 65-70 MPH.

I got 29.6 MPG on that tank which I thought was great. Only about 30 miles of that was non freeway and obviously the downhill coming back really helped offset going up, but still I'm pretty happy.



  • godeacsgodeacs Posts: 481
    Congrats on the your new ride AND excellent gas mileage!.... :)
  • Easypar,
    Is this drivetrain in an Outback or Legacy (in order to define performance vs.weight)? While traveling I-70, did the car feel underpowered? My wife and I test drove a 2010 Outback 3.6R Premium w/HK & Moon, and a 2.5i Limited w/Moon. We're unsure if the size and weight of the 2010 Outback would overwhelm the H-4 in terms of acceleration/performance; Are the increased cost of the H-6 and lower MPG's worth it? Your insight would be appreciated.
    Merry Christmas,
  • easypareasypar ColoradoPosts: 173
    Sorry I didn't put that in, it's a Legacy. There were just the two of us adults, one set of skis, boots and cold weather gear, a couple of changes of clothes and some groceries we were taking for a dinner party.

    We didn't feel it was underpowered and that had been a concern of my wife's when we first looked. I've generally been driving V6s and V8s but as I've gotten older my right foot has gotten a bit "lighter".

  • When I went with my son when he bought his H-4 CVT Outback, we had three big dudes
    in it for a test drive. We pulled a fairly steep highway grade up a hill for about 1.5 miles at an elevation of about 4,500 to about 75 MPH before he eased off. The car performed adequately pulling that grade without much fuss, it could have gone more for sure.

    Test drive the H-4 at highway speeds and judge for yourself.

    The H-6 will cost about $3,000 more for equivalent trim packages and get 4 less on the mpg per EPA. On the other hand there's no substitue for power especaily for crunch highway passing. Decisions decisions.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Tough call indeed, but 30mpg sounds great. Think of the range.
  • Hi all, well I'm at the end of my first tank of gas (provided by dealership) and am only getting 24mpg combined 35mph side roads and highway. I drive "like an old lady" so I'm usually aware to not over-rev the car. Is this usual for the first tank of gas on my 2.5i with CVT? Thanks! G.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You're doing great because Subies improve with age.

    I bet you'll be getting 1-2mpg better after it's broken in.
  • easypareasypar ColoradoPosts: 173
    That's about what I got with my first/dealer tank. I don't think they had it "topped off" like I do. Actually the sticker say 23MPG/city, so that for a first tank is not off. BTW, are you in an Outback or a Legacy?

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269
    The first tank will often show very low mileage, as a dealership will often not fill it all the way up, plus the first however-many-miles-before-you-bought-it likely included quite a bit of idling, etc., that yielded very poor mileage. Usually when I buy a car, the readout average is right around 10 mpg. So, if the dealer did not reset the trip meter when the tank was filled, the result at the end of the tank will be depressed.

    35-45 mph is actually a good speed to achieve excellent fuel economy if little or no stopping is involved, so keep an eye on the economy and look for it to improve with even the next tank. If you are in an area that uses winter-blend fuel, the economy will jump later in the year, as well.
  • easypareasypar ColoradoPosts: 173
    I just filled up and got 26.96mpg on this tank. About 1/4 of it was interstate the rest was in town, some of it with my mountain bike on the back. Considering that the car still has less than 1100 miles on it I'm happy.

  • easypareasypar ColoradoPosts: 173
    I just finished a 515 mile tank, all but about 50 of those miles were from Salt Lake City back to Ft. Collins-Interstate 80 to US 287. About 150 of that was during some snowy conditions so I had to keep the speed a bit lower, the rest was at 70-75mph.

    The car had me, my ski gear and some extra weight I was carrying for a buddy. I'm still a couple of hundred short of 3,000 miles on the car-Legacy-2.5-CVT.

    32.2 on this tank, for a not yet broken in or oil changed engine I'm pretty happy.

    Anyone else tracking their mileage?

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Sweet - our Foresters can break 30 but that's near the record and yours is still very green.
  • I'm in the market for a 2010 Outback and would love to know what kind of mileage people are seeing on the 3.6r. It seems there is plenty of feedback on the smaller 4-cyl and I'm just trying to weigh my options vs. cost. Thanks in advance for your feedback.
  • psdxohpsdxoh Posts: 4
    2.5 CVT: 520 mile trip @ 60-70 mph 80% was PA mountains - 30.4 mpg. 250 mile trip @ 70 mph with less drastic terrain - 31.1 mpg. Urban driving with a mix of city & freeway is 25.5 mpg average for 2 tanks. Our Outback has 2,000 miles, factory tires and all mileage was calculated based on actual gallons purchased and miles driven since last fill-up.
  • dcm61dcm61 Posts: 1,432
    ... all mileage was calculated based on actual gallons purchased and miles driven since last fill-up.

    Curious ... how did the trip computer MPG compare to your calculated figures?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That's impressive. About 2 mpg better than we're getting out of our lighter Forester.
  • avery1avery1 Posts: 372
    Did you run into snow? If so, how did the 4cyl do?
  • easypareasypar ColoradoPosts: 173
    ateixera wrote; "About 2 mpg better than we're getting out of our lighter Forester"

    I would attribute that to the CVT versus whichever tranny the Forester has. Still 4AT?

    BTW, your mileage comports with that experienced by a friend with a new (09 or 10) Forester.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    And we're not even complaining.

    Our smaller, even lighter 1998 Forester manual got about the same. I'd say peak mileage is actually better with our 2009 automatic.
  • saedavesaedave Chicago, ILPosts: 680
    My new 2010 Forester XT is getting much better city mpg than my 2005 3.0R Outback with 5EAT did. So far I'd estimate 2 or 3 mpg better in slow speed city slogs.
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