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Hyundai Elantra Real World MPG 2012



  • My Hyundai Elantra has barely even come close to the EPA estimates. At 90% highway driving, I was able to get 37mpg. This has been the best I have ever achieved. The next closest was 36mpg (once) and then 35mpg a couple times after. Most of the time though, I was getting high twenties to low thirties. I mentioned it to the dealership when it was still new and only had around 6k miles on it and they stated that once it broke-in, that it should get better. Well, at 16k miles, my mileage has continued to decline. So, I asked the dealership about it and they stated that if no check engine light was on, there was probably nothing wrong. I adamantly advised them that something must be wrong, so today they finally agreed to look at it. Well, they stated that the vehicle computer stated the vehicle was misfiring due to too much alcohol in the tank. First off, how did the alcohol get in there, and secondly why isn't it burning it up like any other car would. HEET is all alcohol and is used to remove water. It safely burns up and out along with any water, but I have not used any HEET product or put anything in my tank but gasoline. Generally Chevron or Texaco fuel. On occasion, (Road Trips) Shell or other gasoline, but I always try to stay with a big name brand. I don't cut corners on my fuel or maintenance. I have a 2001 Ford Escape bought new and have put 176k on it and have always used the same fuel and maintenance schedule and it purrs like it always has. So, my question is what type of BS is this their giving me? Too much alcohol in the tank? Why won't the vehicle burn it up like any other vehicle? Also, they are stating that it won't be covered under warranty (Big surprise) and that I have to replace the spark plugs (16k miles) and drain the tank and remove all the alcohol. Again, this crappy gas mileage has been since new, and steadily declined. We don't live in a cold climate and don't have a lot of stop and go traffic. Also, the last fill-up showed me 23mpg. My average is 25mpg. No heavy foot driving as its my wife's car and she drives VERY conservative. Sounds like Hyundai has no idea why it's misfiring and made up this bogus story.......
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    Any chance that some E85 was accidentally put into the tank? Does anyone but you ever put gas into the car?
  • gman4911gman4911 Posts: 43
    If I were you, I'd verify the OBD code. It's possible a sensor is malfunctioning. If you don't have a code scanner, go to Advanced Auto Parts or AutoZone and borrow one.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    When you wrote, "At 90% highway driving, I was able to get 37mpg. This has been the best I have ever achieved. The next closest was 36mpg (once) and then 35mpg a couple times after.", you didn't say anything about how fast you were driving. If you are driving over 70 mph, you can't expect to see max highway FE. And if you are driving at 75-80 mph, then getting 35 or so mpg would likely be pretty reasonable.
  • No kidding Sherlock. Like this is the first car I have ever owned. Are you serious? Obviously these cars were tested under NON-real world driving scenarios, with NON realistic uses of the vehicle (no AC) etc. All this tells me is that they are trying to fudge the numbers and to deceive people into thinking that if they use the vehicle (normally) on normal highways and with normal city driving conditions, that they will achieve the stated MPG's. As you clearly stated above, that is NOT THE CASE. Deception seems to be a normal marketing strategy in this day and age. Why not be honest with people? I know this would probably be a new concept, but wow, nobody would be able to have any legitimate complaints, unless there really was an issue with the vehicle. It's when deception meets reality is when issues arise. How about this novel idea, test ALL the vehicles at 65, 70 & 75 MPH for highway tests? Wow, that seems to be the speed of most highways and freeways. Novel idea?

    For everyone that has a legitimate complaint like myself, continue reading below, for all others, take a hike.

    Ok, lets throw highway out the window for now, since we know they are false tests, and that it's just deception at its best. Ok, my 2011 Hyundai Elantra is stated to get 29MPG city? Well, what type of deceptive test were used to achieve that number? I have NEVER been able to get anywhere near that number? My combined city/highway average is 25MPG. I don't even want to know how bad strictly city driving would be. I don't have a large city like a lot of people here, and I try to use the roadways with the least amount of lights, so I don't understand how it's even possible to get 29MPG. I guess I use the A/C, so there it is. I'm guilty of using the vehicle under normal driving conditions. You got me Hyundai with your false tests, or what ever company they are PAYING to achieve these ridiculous (unrealistic) numbers.

    Here's an idea. How about some of the other car companies who's car's can achieve their stated MPG's come on board and stomp these liars into the dirt?
    Why don't these other manufactures take these other car companies to court and get them to at least, post real numbers. I would have most likely bought a Chevy Cruz or Toyota Camry had I known this car would have been so far off the numbers. I can tell you one thing, my experience with Hyundai so far, tells me I WILL NOT recommend them or buy another vehicle from them. The only way I will have respect for this company at this point is if they come clean with owners that are not getting the stated MPG's and provide compensation or offer an option with hugh incentives to get into another model that gets the stated numbers. Or, they can work on my car and at least get it closer than 11MPG off the normal stated average. I can accept 2-3 mpg off, but 11MPG off is hugh. Don't believe me, my Chevy pickup pulling a 21' fully loaded travel trailer at 75-80 MPH didn't even drop 11MPG. It dropped 8MPG, which is expected when pulling a heavy parachute behind you, especially at those speeds.
  • gman4911gman4911 Posts: 43
    edited June 2012
    If you know that the EPA tests are not under real-world driving condtions, then why are you trying to apply it to real-world conditions?

    The primary purpose of the EPA tests are to allow people to compare one car to another under the exact same test conditions. If there was no standardized test, there'd be no way to fairly compare one car to another.

    As far as your assertion that Hyundai is fudging the numbers, sure it's possible, but they didn't. All the car mfrs test their cars the exact same way under the exact same conditions using parameters specified by the EPA. There was an instance where, I think it was BMW, who had to revise their numbers down after the EPA found the numbers that BMW submitted to be high. The EPA has verified Hyundai's numbers and their results were the same as what Hyundai reported.

    The bottom line is that the closer your driving conditions are to the test conditions, the easier it is to attain the EPA results. This is why the window stickers always specify a range of what you can expect. The more you deviate from the test conditions, the more likely your results will differ, for better or worse. There are many people who've been able to exceed the EPA numbers, myself included.
  • maxx4memaxx4me Posts: 1,341
    edited June 2012
    Sorry for those who continue to deny, but where there is smoke, there is very likely a fire burning somewhere. My Vibe is rated 26/31. I get 33 in summer driving with a light foot. That is all suburban driving. I get 28 when I drive like a maniac. I just got 41 on all highway with the cruise control and maintaining the speed limit and carrying my golf clubs, luggage and a 2.5 ton jack in case of emergency. So there was enough weight to simulate a second person in the car. So, right now, with a very light foot, I am able to attain 33/41 on a car rated 26/31. Please don't slam the Elantra drivers who are not coming close to EPA ratings. There is something clearly amiss when so many have complained. I would not be happy either. All I can add is that they were brave enough to post their issues, and it has influenced my next car purchase. I will NOT be buying an Elantra. My Corolla-Vibe is far exceeding the EPA numbers, and many Yaris owners are doing so also. So for those who have "informed the electorate," I thank you for keeping me from stepping into the same troubles, and I wish you better mileage when your car's engine hits the sweet spot. Mine seemed to have occured right around 50,000 miles.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    What seems more than a little odd to me is that many of the people complaining the most are those that provide the least information about the actual details of specific tank fill ups (how many miles driven and how many gals used) or how they are actually driving. For example, the Elantra's computer provides you average MPH data. So anyone complaining about FE can readily provide this info for any tank of fuel. But so many don't; they just complain. Why? They could also provide relevant info on things like how fast they are driving on interstate, if they use ethanol, carrying passengers, make lots of short trips, do a lot of stop-and-go driving in city, how many miles are on odometer, etc. Anyone complaining would have far more credibility if they provided as much info as possible so others could see how they are actually driving. Just complaining doesn't help anyone understand anything.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123 fast are you choosing to drive on interstate? Are you using cruise control? Ethanol? What is the average MPH figure for some of your recent fill ups? I'd love to have the relevant info to see what might be going on and why. If you drive 80 mph on interestate, you won't get 40 mpg and it wouldn't be realistic to expect it. You should study the EPA methodology for the FE numbers.
  • eweinereweiner Posts: 36
    There are so many rocket scientists on this thread its really silly.

    The facts are really quite obvious and all of the details you are requesting will do little to change these facts.

    The Elantra is only capable of achieving 40MPG under very specific conditions that most drivers do not experience on a regular basis.

    Every single report of 40MPG has been on a relatively flat highway going 65 to 70 in warm clear weather and no AC. That's it. I, for one, do not live where the speed limit is higher than 55, and its hot in the summer and cold in the winter.

    I have only experienced 40MPG when I reset my MPG right before entering the highway. I can then see 40 but only if I drive like an old man.

    The second I am off the highway the 40 is gone. I mean REALLY gone. The local MPG on the Elantra is terrible so if the car is getting 40MPG more often it is completely masked by the rotten local MPG. And dont get me started on what happens when you add AC.

    My driving is 70/30 mix of highway and city with the average trip of about 40 highway miles on work days. The rest is local driving. Average MPH 39. I have monitored my tanks since I bought the car and in 6 months of direct measurement at the pump I have seen about 32 MPG.

    I am lucky, my MPG is not many others are worse. The Elantra is a let down as a 40MPG car. And in a few other ways like seat comfort, drive stability, engine idle, constant air circulation you cannot shut off, intermittent bluetooth etc...
  • gman4911gman4911 Posts: 43
    You do know that the EPA results are NOT from testing the entire tank of gas, don't you? No? Maybe you should read up on the test parameters.
    EPA Detailed Test Information
  • Congratulation! You are gettting almost what the car is rated. The EPA combined rating for the Elantra is 33mpg.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    Keep in mind that the 40 mpg EPA estimate is for highway driving and that the 29 mpg EPA estimate is for city driving. Anyone expecting to get 40 mpg all the time, combined, just doesn't understand the EPA 29/40 FE estimate. But sounds like you are achieving the EPA's combined estimate of 33 mpg, so you should be quite pleased with your FE.
  • dc_driverdc_driver Posts: 712
    LOL. So you are essentially achieving the combined EPA numbers with your car and you still complain?

    There is no pleasing some people. By all means, sell you Elantra and get a Prius.. Clearly you are expecting more out of this car than it is capable delivering. If you are expecting 40mpg from a car in the city you need to be looking into something like a Prius or Volt. I don't even think a VW diesel can achieve 40mpg in the city.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    After reading what others have written, the car press, and my own experience of nearly 4500 miles, I believe the crux of the Elantra FE issue is NOT the highway estimate (the 40 mpg people foolishly obsess over) but the city estimate (the oh-so-hard to achieve 29 mpg).

    I fuelled up today. Avg. MPH a mere 20 (so this was a very, very city-heavy tankful) and I get 27.23 mpg (210.3 miles and 7.724 gals of non-ethanol). I use same station and same pump and same method (stop when auto shut-off kicks in). The computer estimated 29.6 mpg, so it remains 8% off, always too high (which is starting to really tick me off).

    Now I bust my rear to max out city FE and I can't get the 29 city. I come oh-so-frustratingly close, but.... I think most people seriously underestimate BOTH the amount of miles spent in city driving and, more importantly, the amount of time spent in city driving (where stop lights and stop signs kill your time). This is a rather large car (size wise, if not necessarily weight wise) that relies on a small engine with limited low-end torque. The top 2 gears in the AT are overdrive, so city driving is pretty much mostly 1-2-3, 0-25 mph, with little time in direct-drive 4th before you come to yet another stop.

    Posters really should focus on how much time and mileage they are spending in city.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    How do you explain the cases where people have the same commute etc and acheived EPA avgs easily with prior vehicles and now cannot come close with the Elantra, many even trying harder than in previous vehicles? All this avg MPH stuff goes out the window when you compare it to previous vehicles experience. I would highly doubt the avg MPH changed unless they significantly changed their route to work or changed shifts/traffic patterns or something like that.

    I realize that tracking mph is interesting but it does not tell the whole story as their are many ways to achieve avgs. A steady 45mph results in a 40mph avg. A combo of 70 mph and 25mph in the right combination would also result in a 40mph avg. However, I imagine driving a steady 45 would result in great MPG while the combo of 70mph and 25mph with stop and gos would result in substantially worse MPG. Just saying that avgs aren't the end all be all of this question.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    edited June 2012
    I don't care what other cars people were driving years ago, myself included. I only care about what my '12 Elantra GLS AT is achieving today in light of today's EPA estimate.

    And we have the car data readily at hand to help us all better understand how we each drive and what we are achieving for FE. So we should be using it. It makes me suspicious when people deliberately withhold that readily available information. Why tell us you drive "90% highway" and then not say what the avg MPH is when all you have to do is hit a button and look at a number? Makes a huge difference if the real avg MPH is 30 mph vs 55 mph for your tankful. And why just say what the computer said (mine reads too high anyway) when you know how many gals of fuel you pumped into the tank for the tankful? Is easy to give both numbers.

    So that means anyone who wants to be taken real seriously should post all the relevant data that is readily available. That includes...

    1. Computer's avg MPH per tankful,
    2. Computer's avg MPG per tankful,
    3. How many actual total miles driven per tankful,
    4. How many actual total gallons of fuel you pumped into the tank for the tankful,
    5. Whether they are using ethanol or not, and
    6. Any other unique factor (e.g., they routinely drive with passenger or set cruise on highway to 80 mph).
  • fowler3fowler3 Posts: 1,919
    edited June 2012
    I think you are correct. I keep burning up gas sitting at traffic lights all the time, very maddening! Keep in mind that the EPA estimate is based on 55mph and 3000 RPM, not over 60mph highway. Good weather and cool temperatures. The Elantra is stuck with tall gearing at low speeds, a real gas burner. The EPA probably did not try out their estimates in real world situations, no traffic lights at their tracks probably. At least no 3-minute traffic lights.

    And Elantra owners do not take into account their bank drive-thru and drive-in stops. Turn off your engine waiting in lines. Before fuel injection that did not save gas, it does now.

    I'm watching this forum closely, thinking about buying either a Veloster or a KIa Rio-5.
  • gman4911gman4911 Posts: 43
    edited June 2012
    The EPA tests the cars on a dynamometer in a lab not on a test track. The avg idle time for the city test is a little over 14 seconds. In real life, my idle time at major intersections is usually around 2.5 minutes. Worse during rush hour.

    I've posted this before and I'll post it again:
    EPA Detailed Test Information will tell you everything you need to know about the various test cycles. The city cycle is not realistic and the only way to achieve the city EPA numbers is to drive the way they test it - avoid driving during rush hour and avoid routes with stop lights.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    I don't care what other cars people were driving years ago, myself included. I only care about what my '12 Elantra GLS AT is achieving today in light of today's EPA estimate.

    I understand that's it how you feel. I'm am not talking about comparing the MPG to a prior vehicles MPG. I'm talking about the ability of the previous vehicle to achieve the EPA numbers which is predicated on the type of driving the person does to a large degree. Which is what you are getting at. I'm also not talking about cars years ago. If you want to exaggerate that's fine but please consider: If you had a car, just prior to getting the Elantra, that the EPA said would give a combined avg of 28mpg and you averaged say 29mpg. Now I would say to achieve that, given how the EPA tests, one would be driving fairly conservatively. Now you get the Elantra and the EPA says 33 combined avg. Well, the avg person is going to think since they avg'd better than the EPA combined mpg before and my commute hasn't changed, that I should be able to at least achieve the Elantra's combined avg. Then, as hard as they try, they can only get 28 or 29mpg or worse avg. I would be questioning things also.

    Ethanol, believe it or not, is all you can get in most major cities and surrounding areas and does not affect mpg more than about 4% which would be about 1mpg per gal so it's not a major player.

    I don't disagree that avg mph can play a role. But like I explained..averages can be the combination many different speeds. Your 50mph avg may be accomplished vastly different than someones elses 50mph avg but on paper they look the same.

    Unique driving factors are the same with one car as the other if the commute did not change. The conversation centers around how the Elantra does in regards to the EPA numbers but also how it does to the cars that people replaced. After all, high mpg is major factor that most of that most owners of Elantras considered before purchasing to replace their old vehicles.

    This whole debate seems to center around many people that, try as they might, can't get anywhere close to the EPA numbers when they could before. They complain or look for help and many others(because their particular Elantras are getting the correct MPG) keep posting that it's their fault and they just don't know how to drive. Kind of condescending if you ask me. I agree there are some that are just complainers, you get that with all makes/models, but when somebody seems to genuinely have a problem it seems some people just want to make them out to be crazy or something.
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