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Hyundai Elantra Real World MPG 2012

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  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,628
    edited January 2012
    Notice how C&D pointed out that the (earlier separate test) result for the 6-speed manual Veloster was even WORSE (25 mpg overall) than the result for the DCT Veloster (28 mpg overall), even though the EPA figures are "comparable", at about 29 mpg city?

    The key phrase is "earlier separate test". Since the manual and DCT cars were tested separately, we don't know how conditions and driving behavior compare between the two tests. What would be interesting is a comparison of the manual and DCT under exactly the same conditions--as close as is possible anyway.

    Oddly, the test results reported across many magazines and tests are showing Hyundais that are coming in at or below their city ratings.


    The test reports from car mags like C/D almost always have low fuel economy numbers, based on how they drive the cars. CR tends to drive cars more like normal people would, and they've reported:

    Accent: 31 overall (above city rating)
    Elantra: 29 overall (at city rating)
    Elantra Touring: 26 overall (above city rating... actually at the EPA combined rating)
    Sonata GLS: 27 overall (above city rating... actually above the EPA combined rating)
    Tucson: 22 overall (at city rating)
    Santa Fe: 20 overall (at city rating)

    So from CR's tests at least, all the Hyundais they've recently tested at least hit the EPA city rating, and 50% exceeded the city rating.
  • Just purchased a used Elantra Limited last week. 13K miles on it, well maintained with several oil/filter changes to date.

    Drive about 100 miles/day to work and have averaged about 32 mpg on winter gas in Northeast corridor.

    ECO on, cruise control sometimes, other times around 80 to blend with the flow of traffic.

    Based on what I've been reading here I think 40 may be possible in warmer temps, all highway etc., but I'm pretty sure it won't be happening anytime soon for me.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    Think a key to achieving 40 mpg highway is to be realistic on the speeds driven. From what I'm seeing in my '12 GLS AT, both FE achieved at driven speeds and looking at the tachometer as speed increases, I seriously doubt one should expect 40 mpg if one routinely is driving 75 mph and up. So if you're going 80 mph, getting 32 mpg may be quite realistic. But it seems entirely realistic to achieve 40 mpg at steady speeds in the 60-65 mph range. Just because the EPA stickers it at 40 mpg highway doesn't mean one can drive at 75, 80, or 85 mph and expect to get max FE. Higher speeds force engine to work much harder and FE to suffer accordingly.

    I took my daughter back to campus yesterday. I decided to drive on interstate at 62 mph with active ECO and cruise control. Only 90 miles roundtrip. The other 18 miles were city/suburb driving. But the computer mpg reading was at 42 mpg and rising. When I filled her up, I achieved 37.62 mpg (107.6 miles and 2.860 gals). Once again the computer reading higher than actual result achieved. Used 87 oct unleaded (non-ethanol). Was about 40-45 deg F. Two adults and 60 pounds luggage on way up; only 1 adult on way back.
  • This is the 1st tank that I started tracking. 500 miles on the Limited.

    Drove it 80 miles highway and 180 non highway and I averaged 24.8mpg - computer had it at 25.8.

    Only got 258 miles on a tank and took 10.4 to fill up.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,628
    Can you tell us more about conditions of the 260 miles? Speed on highway, temperature, wind, # of stops, traffic, average speed (I think the Elantra tracks that?), tire pressures? Thanks.
  • majorbenmajorben Posts: 16
    edited January 2012
    I just wanted to let you know that for the past 5 weeks my wife has used the vehicle exclusively (long story behind that). Anyway, she travels to and from work, and she does most of the shopping, so her use has mostly been local. Short trips between 5 and 25 miles. Her daily drive to work is approximately 15 miles round trip. The car has been averaging approx. 24.5 mpg per tank, and to me, that doesn't seem to be too bad considering that we've been using 87 octane with 10% ethanol and that we're now in winter temps (Although, it has been a rather mild winter with most night time temps getting into the 20's-30's and most daytime temps in the 40's-50's.) The car is kept in the garage overnight (lucky her), so there hasn't been any warmup period in the morning when she starts it.

    This past weekend when the car was averaging approx, 22.5 mpg as per the car's readout, she had to take it on a 90 mile drive that was mostly (95%) highway. The speed limit on the highway is mostly 65, and she most always did just that. (She's a very conservative driver.) She had 2 passengers for the entire trip (approx 275 lbs in addition to her weight), and the hills were minor on the first part of her trip, but there were some average to above average hills on the 2nd part of the trip. Thankfully, the FE went up to 33 mpg after she calculated it at a fill up. It seems to me that the FE is about as good as it is going to get because the breakin period is just about done. Although, I would expect, and I would hope, that it got better FE during the warmer months especially with non-ethanol gas, I rather doubt that it is going to get much better than 35-36. All in all, that's not too bad, but it remains to be seen.

    We'll be taking it in to the dealer for it's 1st service soon, and we'll be asking for a fuel consumption test. I doubt that anything will be found, and if not, I, too, will be contacting Hyundai for what it is worth, if nothing changes after the car gets more tank fulls after this 1st oil change and after the warmer weather arrives. I still remain to be impressed.
  • crankeeecrankeee Posts: 297
    Backy: Your post on Hyundai models is exactly the reason we chose the 2012 Sonata GLS over the Elantra and other models to include Camry, Altima, Malibu etc. 24/35 vs. 29/40 for the Sonata vs. Elantra. We were tempted by the high Elantra numbers but opted for the larger (read more comfort) choice. so far the MPG is 22-25 in city driving and 37.6 at 67MPH average for highway on a100 mile trip with some hills. Increased speed of 10% resulted in drop to 35 that makes sense. Car not broken in but hoping these figures hold up. If fuel use is #1 concern and/or mostly city driving and not highway, then the Elantra is the choice. Both deliver a lot of value.
  • I drove all of the highway miles using cruise at 65mph. Slight hills and wind that day no traffic. I babied it.

    The non highway miles my spouse drove over the course of a week or 2 back and forth to work and errands.

    Avg temps was about 40.

    The avg computed speed was 27 but I have my doubts about that being accurate.

    I took the avg from 25 to 30 during my highway miles but the avg speed only went from 27 to 31. Considering there weren't many miles on the tank at that point, I thought if should have went much higher.

    Not sure what the tire pressures were.

    Second tank is averaging 24.0 per the computer. Coast for a half mile and it goes up .1 then lightly step on the gas and it drops .2. lol

    Nothing even close to 29.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,628
    Second tank is averaging 24.0 per the computer. Coast for a half mile and it goes up .1 then lightly step on the gas and it drops .2. lol

    I see similar behavior on my Sentra when it hasn't been long since I reset the mpg meter. When coasting, FE is likely over 100 mpg. One key to high FE is to keep one's foot off the accelerator as much as possible.
  • My 2012 Elantra Limited only gets 32 MPG highway. I drive 100 miles per day and 90% of that is highway. I am the only person in the car with nothing else in it. I have tried everything changing fuel types, higher octain, but no help. Hyundai dealer says it will get better. I have 13K on the car now. I wish I would have knwon this before I bought the thing. This car has AT.
  • tenpin288tenpin288 Posts: 804
    What is your top speed during that highway drive? The EPA Highway test cycle that gives that 40 mpg number has a 60 mph top speed and an average overall speed for the test of about 48.3 mph. Speeds above that top or average will drop fuel economy, sometimes a great deal.

    https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/fe_test_schedules.shtml
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    on a recent trip to orlando from where i live in hallandale beach,fla i achieved 43 mpg on the highway according to the trip computer with a little over 3000 miles on the odometer.city mpg with mostly stop and go traffic is about 27.
  • dodgeman07dodgeman07 Posts: 573
    edited January 2012
    The EPA Highway test cycle that gives that 40 mpg number has a 60 mph top speed and an average overall speed for the test of about 48.3 mph.

    Incorrect. Read the test criteria: "Beginning with 2008 models, three additional tests will be used to adjust the city and highway estimates to account for higher speeds, air conditioning use, and colder temperatures."

    It was 2007 and earlier EPA estimates (which were generally reported higher MPG) that did not exceed 60mph. High speeds, A/C, and cold weather driving were incorporated in 2008.

    P.S. Steady speed driving at 70mph or more will rarely yield EPA Hwy numbers in any car. It is aimed more at what you SHOULD achieve at 65mph with a warm engine, level terrain, appropriate tire pressure, fuel, cruise on etc.

    My bet is I could get 40mpg out of a new Elantra if I tried, but I don't own one. ;) Driving 75mph I wouldn't expect more than 35mpg.
  • tenpin288tenpin288 Posts: 804
    What I said was true. If you look at the detailed comparison tab on the page I referred to, you will see that the tests you mentioned do change the parameters somewhat, but only somewhat as the adjusted highway test has an average test cycle speed of 48.4 mph even though the max speed is up to 80 mph. Now if that high speed highway test had an average speed of over 60-65 mph, that would be a difference maker!
  • tenpin288 you said, and I quote, "The EPA Highway test cycle that gives that 40 mpg number has a 60 mph top speed...".

    That is incorrect. It goes to 80mph and the high-speed cycle includes several starts from a complete stop running to high speeds. The parameters are changed dramatically.

    Telling people they have a 60mph top speed on the 40mpg hwy test? Simply not true.
  • tenpin288tenpin288 Posts: 804
    edited January 2012
    Let me rephrase/refine/restate/clarify my previous posts/statements.

    Telling people they have a 60mph top speed on the 40mpg hwy test? Simply not true.

    Actually it is true. The highway test top speed is 60 mph. The high speed test has a spike to 80 mph for a short time but is not a highway only test as it is designed to also include some city-style stop and go driving during its 9.9 minute/8 mile in length test cycle!

    The highway test and the high speed test both have an overall average speed of just over 48 mph. And the high speed test along with the two other new tests are used to "to adjust the city and highway estimates to account for higher speeds, air conditioning use, and colder temperatures" per the EPA.

    The point I am trying to bring out is that given these EPA testing parameters, it is unlikely for anyone to expect their Elantra, or any car for that matter, to get the EPA highway mileage figure when they are driving for an extended highway stretch at speeds in excess of posted speed limits. If their average speed (not top speed) for their commute exceeds the EPA average of 48 mph by a significant amount, say by averaging 70-80 mph for 10, 20, 30 miles or more due to traffic, their fuel mileage will suffer. It's just simple physics.

    What I would really like the EPA to do is come up with a testing methodology closer to what Backy usually advocates for people to try. Do an extended drive at a steady state in two directions and then check mileage. It might surprise many a person!
  • dodgeman07dodgeman07 Posts: 573
    edited January 2012
    Actually it is true. The highway test top speed is 60 mph.

    You need to re-read the EPA test critieria. The new EPA (in 2008) hwy numbers don't only include the hwy portion of the test. That's why they are (usually) much lower than the pre-2008 numbers that ONLY included the Hwy test you cite. The testing takes into account various factors to allow for high speed driving over long distances. That's what EPA Hwy numbers are supposed to reflect, not short commutes under 10 miles.

    Most people can easily hit the EPA Hwy numbers driving 65 to 70mph on the highway. I'm basing this on actual drivers and actual cars; me, friends, family, acquaintances, etc. The EPA Hwy numbers were revised (usually 10% or more downward) after the Hwy only portion you cite was modified to reflect the other test critieria.

    Again, most drivers easily hit the EPA Hwy numbers these days if driving 70 mph or less on over-the-road type driving. I'll quit beating the dead horse now. If you still think the Elantra's EPA 40 mpg Hwy estimate was obtained at under 60 mph, so be it. You're wrong.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    Elantra owners should get to know their cars well at highway speeds. By this I mean study the speed, tachometer reading, and achieved fuel economy. Compare tach readings at 60 mph, 65, 70, and 75. Obviously, the higher the speed the higher the RPMs and the lower the FE. Max highway fuel economy is usually in the 60-65 mph steady state range. My recent longer trip was mostly (about 90%) at 70 mph using active Eco and cruise and I achieved nearly 37 mpg. A shorter one, that had some city driving but was nearly 80% 62 mph interstate with Eco and cruise achieved 38 mpg. Both on 87 octane non-ethanol.
  • I have my 2011 Elantra for a month now and all I can say is I'm very dissapointed. I've been driving a 2009 Corolla for the last 3 years averaging 28-30 miles a gal, but with this Elantra only 24-25 mpg. It has only 900 miles on it but I just can't see more than a few miles improvement. The reason I went with the Elantra is for the gas mileage, I don't see how they can claim 29/40, it's not even close. I thought I would average at least 31mpg, it's still new so I'm gonna be patient.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    Check out the link to the interesting Ward's article that is on the new "Hyundai Car of the Year" forum. This excerpt caught my eye:

    "Typically, what we find is these are urban drivers who have a lot of time, much more time than they realize, just sitting and idling at a stop sign,” Krafcik says. “When we show them that’s much more severe than the EPA city-cycle, and that here are some tips on how you can drive the car, the light bulb goes off.”

    Interesting. I suspect people do seriously underestimate the time spent at stop lights and stop signs which is why the Europeans are making a big deal about the auto stop/start feature, which I believe they include in their FE calculations but which our EPA may not? Hyundai may explore that feature in near future, esp. if other car makers add to their small fuel efficient vehicles? Guess only time will tell.
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