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Hyundai Elantra Real World MPG 2012



  • Back in Iowa tonight after 3 days and about 380 miles on an Enterprise Elantra GLS automatic rental (well broken in at 24,000 miles). Sticking to the mileage only here............

    I only put about 20 chilly miles on the car in the north suburbs of Chicago. Total for the trip was 90% hwy and 10% city. The tire pressure light was on the entire trip. My guess is the pressure was down a few pounds from recommended levels.

    The drive home offered a slight elevation increase, 10-15 mph headwinds, single digit temps, and the tire pressure issue. After a 37.5 mpg effort going east, the trip home was metered at 32 mpg. For the trip I averaged just under 35 mpg. Not bad at all. I filled up with 10.8 gallons of fuel just before turning her in. The car was "full" at pick-up so the trip meter was within a reasonable margin of error.

    The fixation with the 40 mpg hwy rating hurts this car. Sure it COULD achieve 40 mpg at 65 mph on level roads with good fuel and a well-maintained vehicle, but the 33 mpg combined number is the realistic figure to work from. After my trip I can say that if I owned the car, I could easily hit the 33 mpg EPA combined number with my current driving style (average and 50/50 city/hwy). I also buy ethanol-free fuel here in the Dubuque, Iowa area and that helps a bit. :)

    Nice car Hyundai! You've come a long way since my test drive of the last-gen Sonata in 2006.
  • crankeeecrankeee Posts: 297
    edited January 2012
    We bought 2012 Sonata GLS 1 month ago with followings MPG results.
    Car gets the advertised 35 on the highway under varying conditions. 36-38 on trip computer 35-36 manual calc.
    In town MPG is all over the board (20-28) due to mix of sitting in traffic, some freeway, some 30-45 MPH when possible. Point is that the overall MPG is driven by the city driving and the type of conditions. Highway is more consistent in MPG and conditions.
    All cars use more gas idling and starting up to get the mass moving - more mass more gas. Even the smaller cars like Elantra feel the effects. EPA figures are misleading in that conditions are same for all cars tested.
    good luck - maybe we all can change our driving route to max MPG.
  • My car is a 2012 Elantra Limited - 17" wheels with automatic transmission and NAV package.

    Current Odometer Reading: around 7000

    Last calculated mpg: 19.8

    Average calculated mpg (both by hand and by the dash indicator): 20

    Average miles driven per day: 30

    # of people in the car other than the driver: 0

    tow package: no

    any other additional weight in the car: Just the stuff I carry to work, so maybe a couple pounds

    driving trips: commuter - 90% city / 10% Hwy

    air pressure in tires: Recommended, verified twice since I bought it

    Fuel: Various tried with no difference, from Arco and Safeway (cheap) to Mobile, Exxon, Shell, and 76 (expensive)

    A/C use: Used for a month or so after buying the car, but not since. Didn’t seem to make a difference.

    ECO: Always On

    Maintenance done so far: Dealer recommended per book, done by dealer

    I took it in at around 3500 miles and had the dealer check it out. They said everything came up perfectly within spec.

    Every time I’ve spoken to the dealer about it they tell me it needs more time to break in. When I complained at 3500 miles, they said wait until 5000. When I complained at 6000, they told me wait until 10,000. They told me to use better gas, so I switched from Arco to Shell and Exxon for a few months with no change at all. I tried buying higher octane gas and got another few miles out of that tank, but I only did it once.

    I do almost all city driving, but it’s the same route 5 days of the week. There are plenty of lights along the way, but traffic isn’t heavy, so I rarely stop except at a light or a sign.
  • Everything that you mentioned is similar to my driving conditions. I go 90% city 10% highway and have been getting 21-22mpg. I now have 8700 miles on the car and the city mpg has gotten worse as the mileage has increased. I can get 34 mpg on a long highway drive without using cruise. When i first got the car last June i took it to Florida from New york City and back and got as high as 41 on the gauge. This was during the run through Georgia on 95S with the cruise on and doing 70 with one passenger and a trunk full of luggage. I have not gotten close to that number since. I hope to take a long highway drive soon and will see if i can get that kind of mileage again. It seems that city driving with stopping for lights and stop signs really knocks down the mileage. You can watch the mpg gauge drop as you wait for the light to change. I have owened 2003 and 2004 Elantras and used to average about 25-26mpg with them and got about 30mpg on a long highway drive. I was really excited when i first got the 2012 as the gas mileage was so much better. If it does not improve i will notify the dealer but as i have read from other complaints the dealer always claim there is nothing wrong. I thing Hyundai has been falsely advertising the mpg.
  • ODO=3500. Can't seem to get any real info from dealer. ECO=ON actually produces less mpg, then when OFF. Dealer says only use when driving interstates. mpg by doing math at every tank full shows less than Avg MPG display by 2-4 mpg. Tests done on interstate, @70mph, cruise, no head/tail wind, tank to tank non-stop except for fill-up. Best I get 34-35 MPH. Non-highway 29-30 mpg. Live in rural so it is always 25+miles to everywhere.

    Dealer says no break in needed, but can't explain how ECO works, never mentioned the 7% improvement when ON, says everything checks out OK. Dealer hands me instruction sheet on how to compute MPG manually (tank to tank) as if you needed a PHD to figure that out. This was after they were given a detailed spreadsheet showing every tank of gas, with ECO On and Off.

    Calling Hyundai USA, asking same questions, getting multiple case #'s, and have never heard a word from them either.

    Never used Forums, found this hoping someone out there can help me set actual expectations.
  • Best I get 34-35 MPH. Non-highway 29-30 mpg. Live in rural so it is always 25+miles to everywhere.

    I would love to get those numbers especially at 70mph.

    Update on 3rd tank @ 140 miles - computer says 24.3. It was at 23.3 and then I took it on a 24 mile round trip of 90% highway. Again this is computer reading so it's probably a bit lower.
  • pflyerpflyer Posts: 25
    I just returned from a 1200 mile trip on I-35 in Texas. Average speed was about 75mph. Trip computer said I got 38 mpg. My gas usage (I.E. amount pumped in over 1200 miles) was slightly above 36 mpg.

    I have never got less than 30 in city driving.

    Let me give you my secret: USE CRUISE CONTROL AS MUCH AS YOU CAN.

    I did my own little test and found, especially in city driving, cruise easily gave me 2-3 mpg extra. It's amazing, but true; at least for my car.

    So... give it a try. When I leave my garage in the morning, the first button I hit, even before the radio, is the cruise enabler switch. I use it from 30mph up to highway cruising speeds.

    Simply amazing difference. Gas brand makes no difference.

    2011 Elantra GLS Auto with 10,000 miles.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    If you can routinely use cruise control while driving in the city, then your city is a lot different than most. City driving in bigger cities is more like block after block of stoplights. So more like stop, start, drive a block, stop, etc. Even in suburbs, more like go 4 blocks and hit stoplight. Thinking cruise control won't even engage at speeds lower than 30 mph, where most city driving occurs. Is potentially dangerous to use cruise control in traffic. It is designed for highways.
  • pflyerpflyer Posts: 25
    I live right in the middle of DFW.

    Traffic is difficult to say the least.

    I can engage my cruise at about 27 mph.

    I find cruise monitors my speed better than I do, thus making me a safer driver by concentrating on the outside threats verses monitoring my speed.

    If I need to disengage my cruise, I either deselect it on the steering wheel or depress the brake pedal.

    What part of keeping your eyes on the road and slowing down by depressing the brake pedal is unsafe?

    Not being argumentative, but if you would like to increase your mpg on an Elantra and still be a safe driver, cruise is the way to go, IMHO.

    If someone feels it is unsafe to use cruise in city driving, they should not use it.
  • william621william621 Posts: 1
    edited January 2012
    Hi all,

    I have been getting 29mpg to 32 mpg consistently with mixed driving, and I've also noticed how it really drops off in the city. Within a day of taking delivery of my car, I took a hwy trip and I was able to get about 35 mpg, driving about 75 mpg on the interstate. That was my first tank, and I am easy on the car, so I was disappointed. I wasn't paying attention to the the mileage meter, and the eco mode was on. The next tank I filled up right on the interstate and immediately got back on and decided to leave the mpg meter on and try to feather it to see where the sweet spot was to max the mileage. I found that if I ran it between 65-72 mph max with eco mode on and really paid attention to feathering the gas, keeping the rpm around 2250, I was able to max out the mpg meter at 42 mpg consistently. Once I actually got it to read 43.7 mpg briefly before pulling off the interstate. The outside temp was in the 50's and driving was on I-85 in N.C., mostly flat with mild inclines across the state, so I know it can achieve the ballpark 40 mph.

    That being said, I would have been pissed to be only getting low 30's with mixed driving if I hadn't done a road trip as soon as I got it! I still feel like this car should get bettter mileage around town. I had a 1991 Accord that I drove for 20+ years, and I mean drove the hell out of it, pushing it hard every single day, and it got 32 mpg with the same driving terrain, plus it was a 2.2 lt. engine. It was also a manual shift, and I would agree with another post seen here that I would get better mpg if I had gotten a manual shift. I'm going to look into using the "manual mode" shift feature (whatever you call it) on the automatic and perhaps tweek the mileage some, but I'll have to read the owners manual on proper use of that feature before doing it...just a thought.

    I think when you say mixed driving you have to use time as your measurement as opposed to miles driven to have a true reflection of what real "mixed" driving constitutes. Mileage wise, I would consider my ratio 75/25 hwy/city, but time wise it would be more like 40/60 or 50/50 at best. This is where I believe a lot of folks underestimate the amount of actual city driving they do, using mileage instead of time. I looked at the forums for the Honda Civic and the Ford Focus, and reading some of the comments over there make me feel like I am still pretty well off with the Hyundai. The Honda doesn't have anywhere near the features but you'll get a few more mpg consistently, but component quailty has gone down on the Honda. I saw a number of folks on the Focus forum with crazy electronic and mechanical malfunctions, so overall I'm pretty happy with the total package of the Elantra. Everything is working fine on my car! Exterior styling and interior layout is by far the best IMHO, the breaking is very responsive, I love the sound system and I'm totally hooked on XM radio! I'm loving the heated leather seats and sunroof, as well as the ease of plug and play hand held devices. The ride is pretty quiet for a small car. I just wish the steering was a little more "crisp", as it has a ways to go to get to the level of the Honda I was driving. It took me a few days to get use to the "loose" feel of the steering, but it wasn't a deal breaker for me.

    Also, after I worked my price with the dealer, I insisted on the dealer throwing in the "spare tire kit" at no cast to me, and the dealer hooked me up. It took two weeks for the parts dept. to get it from the warehouse. There is a place for the tire under the trunk, but no place to secure the jack, so you just have to fit it in there. I dont want to be at the mercy of roadside assistance and have to wait hours when I can change a tire and be on my way in 10 minutes, but I understand that it's cost effective for Hyundai to skip the tire.

    Overall, I think I got a well balanced automobile for the price, and will live with the lower than anticipated mixed driving mileage performance.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    I agree with the warnings printed in the Elantra owner's manual: "Use the cruise control system only when traveling on open highways in good weather" and "Do not use the cruise control when it may not be safe to keep the car at a constant speed, for instance, driving in heavy or varying traffic...." I've driven extensively in DFW area (I like the Oakland A's and have driven down to Arlington see them play Rangers over a dozen times). I've never found the DFW traffic conducive to using cruise control. A ton of traffic and a ton of stoplights.
  • eweinereweiner Posts: 36
    For you and for all:

    ECO is only for local driving and the ECO system is unable to distiguish these driving types on its own (why I dont know). If you are doing mostly highway, turn off the ECO.

    I dont care what the dealer says.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    Doesn't seem like Hyundai says too much in detail about the specifics of ECO and its operation. All owner's manual says is it "helps improve fuel efficiency by controlling the engine and transaxle." And, "When the coolant temperature is low: The system will be limited until engine performance become normal." And, "When driving up a hill: The system will be limited to gain power when driving uphill because the engine torque is restricted. When the accelerator pedal is deeply pressed for a few seconds: The system will be limited judging that the driver wants to speed up."

    Anyone know anything definitive in detail about the system? Appears it tries to keep car in highest gear possible, wanting to delay downshifts when accelerating and upshifting as soon as it can. But unlike Honda's more advanced system, it doesn't apear to impact A/C or heater. I've noticed the car tries to quickly get to 4th gear in town (direct drive 1:1) but then doesn't want to get into 5th (an overdrive) until 30-35 mph.

    The owner's manual also states: "your vehicle does not require extended warm-up. After the engine has started, allow the engine to run for 10 to 20 seconds prior to placing [it] in gear. In very cold weather, however, give your engine a slightly longer-warm-up period." Following this will save some gas for those who like to warm their car up for a minute or more.
  • Kate, are you in a warm or cold state? I'm in California, wondering if the no-winter, little AC condition would make the MPG better
  • pflyerpflyer Posts: 25

    Not trying to get into a critical discussion on your technique for using cruise control verses mine. I have found that using cruise control as much as I can, including city driving in DFW, increases my mileage by a measurable amount; which is what this discussion topic is about.

    When I need to deselect cruise, I push the brake pedal; same as when I am NOT using cruise control and need to slow down.

    Owner's Manuals are written by attorneys trying to mitigate risk for the manufacturer (i.e., see Your Honor we told them not to use the cell phone when driving... even though we have bluetooth, etc...)

    If you want to improve your mpg, give cruise a try. If you think it is less safe, than don't use it.

    I do not use it in stop and go traffic, but if I am going from red light to red light with two blocks in between, absolutely.

    But to each his own, I guess.
  • do not use it in stop and go traffic, but if I am going from red light to red light with two blocks in between, absolutely.

    That sounds like stop and go traffic to me. lol It also sounds like not much fun driving worrying about cruise every 2 seconds.

    Anyway. 3rd tank gone and the avg was 24.8 with mostly city driving this time.
    I filled up with Sunoco. Car is over 1000 miles now. If no improvement I will be passing on this complaint to the service manager.
  • Here is some follow up. Now have 8700miles on car. Have found that a long highway trip 100miles will produce 36mpg but as soon as you get off and hit local streets the mpg drops like a rock. If i run the car on all local street driving after the highway i end up with 24mpg. If i stay off the highway it can go as low as 21mpg. Cold weather, gas blend who knows. Will it get better in the warm weather one will see. Great car on the highway, mpg. Horrible in city driving.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,630
    Cold weather definitely takes a toll on fuel economy. I see a loss of 15-20% on my daily driver (2.0L, 140 hp CVT) in mid-winter when it's below freezing, compared to mild weather.
  • I previously owned a Sonata 2011 GLS. I traded it in and purchased a 2012 Elantra GLS specifically because I wanted to cut back on fuel costs. The Elantra was (and still is) boasting 30mpg city and 40mpg highway.

    After several months of ownership I have yet to reach 30mpg. I drive alone, use the ECO mode at all times. I coast to stop signs and red lights. I slip the transmission into neutral when safety permits. I do not carry anything in the car, nor do I make jack rabbit starts or sudden stops. When on the freeway I use cruise control with the tachometer set at around 1,500 RPMs.

    I am extremely upset by what I now recognize as false mileage sales pitches by Hyundai. My goal is to trade this guzzler in for a vehicle that brand that actually conforms to their fuel economy listings.

    I want Hyundai to compensate me for this deceptive MPG claim. I will not cease in my efforts to bring this to a successful end. There are many options available to the consumer that will result in a flood of paperwork on your end.

    Recalls are one thing, but lies are not to be taken lightly.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,630
    Based on what you've said, I think there's something wrong with your particular car. For example, you should easily surpass 30 mpg cruising on the highway at 1500 RPM. I know from driving the Elantra it's capable of well over 30 mpg under those conditions.

    What actions have you taken so far? One thing that would be interesting to do is rent a 2012 Elantra GLS for a day and drive it as you usually do, and see what the mpg is. If there's a significant difference with your car, that will be good evidence to take to your dealer.

    What mpg did you get in your Sonata under the same driving conditions?
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