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Nissan Altima Real World MPG



  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    FWIW- Driving moderately (smoothly keeping up with traffic) my 2010 Altima 2.5S sedan (~15k miles) consistently gives me 27-28mpg city/suburban (10-15mi trips) & 33-35mph highway (70-75mph). Those #'s are from actual gas used over last 5+k miles. IMHO that's good real-world economy for very decent car with lots of room (and NO hybrid headaches).

    My daughter has a 2008 2.5 SL and her mileages almost mirror yours, although he best hwy is usually around 32. I suspect thats because she pushes the speed limit. Around town, shes a "dead match" with your results...
  • One thing you might want to try:
    Take the Altima to the Nissan dealership service dept. and ask if there is a flash update for the OBC (On Board Computer). If not, ask them to do a factory reset on the Altima's OBC. That will force the OBC to re-learn your driving habits and make the proper adjustments to the engine and fuel economy.

    Mike :shades:
  • smarty666smarty666 Posts: 1,503
    edited February 2012
    No one is angry or about to cry here. Don't be so melodramatic. People are complaining about Nissan and the poor gas mileage and this is not something unique only to Nissan. The reason they won't help is, there are plenty of us, the majority, not complaining to them about poor fuel economy, and in fact get better than the EPA estimates on the window sticker.

    I was just reading today about a small class action lawsuit about 200-300 people filled against Honda and Hyundai back in 2009 for not getting the EPA estimates on their vehicles. The problem is, both Honda and Hyundai brought thousands upon thousands of letters from consumers praising the fuel economy on the vary vehicles this small group of people were complaining about. Those people, thus lost the case.

    If you getting bad fuel economy, you either
    (A) are not driving as fuel conscious as you think
    (B) have something very wrong with your specific vehicle

    Myself and many others have reported we are either meeting or exceeding the EPA estimates on the window sticker so these vehicles can get the mpg they are supposed to.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,824
    Very reasonable answer; however the original post was removed for profanity/personal comments. Hopefully the member will at least see your response.

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  • smarty666smarty666 Posts: 1,503
    Many thanks! I have no doubt some people are having mpg issues, it is just simply not something that Nissan alone experiences, as I pointed out with Honda and Hyundai for example. On a couple of the rare occasions where I spent a few days in a major city, I've seen my own mpg shoot down on my Maxima. I would not recommend the Maxima or Nissan as vehicles if you live in the city or do primarily most of your driving in the city. The mpg is going to be terrible.
  • Let me start by saying I know practically nothing about cars,
    and I'm here because I really want advice.

    I recently bought a 2012 Altima S. I might drive only 40% highway, 60% city.
    When I first refilled the tank, the car had just barely made 14 miles per
    gallon. That seemed likely to be a special case, probably the dealer hadn't
    *really* filled the tank when I first bought the car. But when I filled my
    tank the second time, I was barely up to 15 mpg. After 1500 miles over 3
    months, I've climbed "up to" 19 mpg. Apparently everyone on this forum thinks this, but really, I'm not an aggressive driver.

    Thanks for the ideas I've already seen here.
    "Resetting the OBC" might connect to what the dealer just told me
    about the car taking time to "relearn" my habits. Since the mileage
    is slowly creeping up, it seems like the car might have been set oddly
    at the factory, or whoever drove it on the lot those first 4 or 5 miles
    might have treated it like a race car, so: how long does it take the OBC
    to adjust to a driver? I just got back from taking the car in to the
    dealer, so I'd like to try other ideas before taking it back there.

    The dealership came up with only one suggestion, also mentioned here:
    warming the car up before driving it.
    How much difference does this make?
    How long should the car be allowed to run for before driving it off?
    (I'd hate to sit in the car while it idles for too long, that sounds like it
    would hurt mileage rather than helping it.)
    I've never heard anyone mention warming up a car in the morning before -
    is it because I live in Los Angeles rather than Buffalo or Butte?

    And what is the "break-in" period someone mentioned?

    I'd very much appreciate any information. Regular is almost $5 per gallon,
    and I seem to be buying at least 25% more than I "should" with this car!
  • mlmcgaheemlmcgahee Posts: 102
    Question: Are you resetting the MPG counter back to zero with each fill-up?

    If not you are seeing the average MPG since the last time it was reset and not the average MPG of one tank full of gas.

    Mike :shades:
  • FWIW, I have 59000 miles on my 2008 Altima 2.5SL and am currently getting 24-25mpg in mixed driving conditions. I noticed the biggest difference in mpg once I started keeping engine RPMs low (like under 2000 in town). I have never had a tune-up on this car, have a 65lb sub in the trunk and probably ~30lb worth of sound deadener material in the front doors / rear deck / side panels. Also have the 17" rims from the 3.5 model. When I'm in a rush, it's extremely easy to get the rpms between 3000 and 4000.

    During my break-in period, first 5000 miles I believe the mpg was pretty crappy. Worse than a v6, but it got better. Not saying this applies to your situation but just my 2 cents.
  • I am resetting it, but to be safe I'm calculating the mpg myself (miles since last fill/gallons to refill tank). I realize that can vary with time of day you fill the tank, gas station etc. but that has to cancel out over time, and anyway *every* time I fill the tank I'm getting low mileage figures so it's not some one-time fluctuation.

    FWIW, I believe the car is guesstimating the MPG in a way that produces slightly optimistic numbers.
  • That's interesting, thanks.
    Does anyone know why there could be a 5,000 mile break-in period with pretty crappy mpg, and what I might be able to do to get to the other side pronto?

    I'd love to use the OBC feature showing instantaneous MPG, but it's a little *too* instantaneous, oscillating rapidly between wonderful and awful as the road dips, I break or accelerate slightly etc. -- is there a way to adjust this feature from average-mpg-this-last-second to average-mpg-the-last-ten-seconds (or even minute)?

    Also, somebody suggested using cruise control, does that really optimize mpg significantly?
  • mlmcgaheemlmcgahee Posts: 102
    wow... It sounds like you've done everything you can do. I think my next step would be to have the Nissan service dept. reset the OBC and see if that makes a difference.

    Mike :shades:
  • Okay guys these are simple reasons why the Nissan Altima (New ones) are not giving good MPGs. Knowledge is power and following is genuine verified information

    1. New cars DONT give good MPG because the engine is not "broken in" so there is a lot of friction in the engine especially the pistons which reduces the MPG and gives that feeling of car NOT being smooth so don't fret. It will become a LOT smoother after your first oil change. I recommend changing oil even if your car has not done 3000 miles. Just get it changes after 3 months.

    2. My new Altima 2012 S was giving me 16mpg to start with then slowly it crept up to 19mpg and then after first oil change it has gone up to 23mpg (combined) Please DONOT expect good MPG before 5000 miles due to reason described above.

    3. You can get the ECCU (engine computer unit) reprogrammed by the dealer but the engine re programs seeing your driving pattern for last 30 MILES. So just drive whatever way you want and it will reset it self.

    Happy with the description?? hope it helps.
  • ohlodeohlode Posts: 4
    Just turned over 3000 miles. I have never gotten less than 28.7 mpg and that is city driving. If I mix in some freeway or expressway driving for around 30 to 40% of total driving miles it gets up to 31.0 pretty easily. I'd say if you are not getting at least 28 then you have something majorly wrong with your vehicle. (or you are an owner of a competitive model and just spoof on this forum for fun...)
  • @ohload its wrong to make assumption that we all are spoofing - or crazy - or we dont know how to drive etc... there is something wrong with our cars indeed - that is why we are here- and its not a little wrong. My wife said something to me after our first oil change at the dealer ship - she felt the car didnt get the same milage as when it was new - so we did get better milage but somethign happened - significant enough for wife to feel somethign was wrong - i was not the primary driver on the car - though once i started to investigate it and take a few road trips - we cant get mroe than 27 in perfect weather - with a/c off and no load or luggage.. - i had her drive my 97 blazer for a week to her school as she does with with nissan - exact same routes - same class schedule same times - same gas stations - same driving habits - she averaged 19.1 mpg with the blazer - rated at 15/21; and 22.3 with the altima - 70% hwy est with blazer - far below combined est with blazer - by the same calc - i should get about 31.5 mpg with the nissan as used for the this.. its about 9mgh - its way off u can not account for this by any logic like a/c how u drive( without being arrested and melting your tires off) there is somethign radically wrong with these cars - and i think its criminal - i bought this car because of the rated gas milage

    i have owned about 8 cars in my life and everyone - every single one of them got what they were rated at- andi mean using the old pre 08 ratings.. the new rating on my blazer is 14- 20 not the 15-21 pre 08 but guess what? i get 15-21 plus or minus a half// always air on - air off - 1000 pay load - doing 60mph doing 95mph doesnt matter- i did the whole florida TP at 95 mph i got 21 - i did all of nebraska 10% grade up hill going west for 600 miles.. got 22.5 mph with full load and ac going and uphill all way.. there is so little differnce in the gas milage between my blazer and the nissan - its so negligible we dont concern ourselves anylonger with the way we use each and for what trips.. yet the altima is rated at about 170% of the milage rating as the blazer - and we are far far from that - its about 15% more than blazer - negligible in the grand scheme. on the bright side - its not worse than the blazer.. but make no mistake - the altima is not economical car it was made out to be - and many many people here are attesting to it - and i have read posts here about people who are heavy footed and drive dense city and getting good combined.. this are people who self admit their driving habits and get good - mpg and yet i am very tame with my habits.. also i am mechanical engineer - -so trust me - when i tell you there is somethign wrong with the car and not the driver - and that is to the idiot - that said make sure your brakes are not draging and freewheeling downhill and blah . omg - believe me and the rest of the people with crap milage - we use real gas from shell and Exxon bp. etc - i dont know if think we are making it from corn mash in the backyard or what .. anyhow - i am with the poor bastards here that are getting crappy milage- there are some little bettter than me - most about what i get - the dreaded 26-27 max on interstate - and 18- 21 in city ..... but it appears there some even getting worse.. being that it has been suggested that some have experienced significant increases in milage with altitude.. and some like me experienced better milage before servicing - would suggest there is somethign about some comp management of the fuel - that may be in play. the good news is this is fixable - we need to get our act together compile the data in a way that nissan can investigate and remedy the problem .. - because i just don t think it can be anythign else - the comp controls all this - and i agree an engine like this just cant burn fuel to this amount of consumption - without making miles.. - so my guess its not burning it .. or at least completely ..... somethign is wrong with the mix.. and sensing the environment.. - maybe they got a lot of cheap comp chips - or static eproms. that are bad.. just not saving the appropriate settings.. or perhaps its a group of bad trannys that came off line - that somehow - are using a lot extra.. inefficient gearing... though mine seems way to low - and seems to have adjusted itself this way over time perhaps from babying the gas pedal - which tooo me would seem to be more effiecient so long as their is no heavy labor to get the car going - but the car seems to have ample torque so - i dont feel its tranny.
    though , in my case, i feel its just a comp setting that has gotten goofed up somehow.. never the less its poor quality control and not user error ........ i am comfortable reading these people testimonials and dont believe they are fruit cakes or incompetents and drive poorly or dont know anythign - i pretty much agree with all of them - and am shocked that people come here and tell how tehy are getting great milage - its shocks us almost - but it also puts salt in the wound because not only are you getting what you are supposed and we dont - you make it feel like its our fault.... double injury.. well i think we start a petition and some documentation and maybe do like with hyundia and start a class action suit - but more i would prefer just to have my car fixed. anyhow i think its time to collaborate - - if anyone wants to be contact for this - i suggest they make it known here.. i am not sure what the forum rules are regarding this..

    i hope nissan makes good on this - because i am for one never buying another nissan and probably never another foreign job again - they just are not as good a american cars- and i know all over the net you will here about how bad americans cars are - but i suggest you go and read the reliabilty reports on the 97 blazer - and you see its poor - but i have news for you - mine is now 16 years old in two months.. and its like mint - it drives perfect as new - everthing functions 100% and it has cost me almost nothing in repairs - i put a 495 ignition switch in it - a new radiator - per the dexcool thing- cost total of 111 dollars ( nice about domestics much cheaper to repair ) sisters lexus 750 dollars.. i put one alternator less than foreign again.. and one winsheild wiper motor which chev paid for outside of warranty. 16 years less than 1000 bucks.. oh just last yaer - i put new ball joints because i had to pass inspection in utah - one of few states with rigorous inspection.. this maintenance not repairs.. cost me less than 350 .. oh also i get about 45- 50 k miles out tires on the blazer never had car that was this light on tires - and i dont mean i road them till steel - i mean the tire wear indicators were not full showing at this milage - no rotation necessary too. and i know what a lot of people are thinking - they are truck tires they have lots of rubber - well no - the stock tires that came on my blazer were infact car passager tire
  • chevyonlyfonchevyonlyfon Posts: 10
    edited June 2012
    the stock tires that came on my blazer were infact car passager tires - mich cant rembmber anyway i have a mich ltx on it now - same wear will get 50 without pushing it - guess how many miles i get out of my altima tires - with same treadwear rating.. about 18k...... i have got many of reason to go back to american.. and i will let you speak with my sister and brother how thier bmw 7 series and lexus es fell apart long before my blazer - both had trim and radios breaking, wiper and antenna motors and virtually all mechanicals on the car falling apart post the 11- 12 year mark - both unbelievably expensive to maintain for even an oil change.. - i am so sick of the notion that the reliability of american is bad - - i dont see it - you cant prove it by me - its just crap.. u cant prove it to my brother - he went and looked a chevy cruze yesterday to replace the gas guzzler 7 series.. junk he wants something that can do the 100mi per day he commutes to work.. he was going to go foreign - but i turned him to chevy 10 minutes after he drove the cruze he said it smokes the foreign boxes in quality . never the less - i am thinking of ditching my altima for cruze too. or anything american - i dont hate my altima - but i am burnt a bit i bought for the mileage - and this has really hurt me - mean while i have fallen more in love with my blazer - as its still beautiful and shiny as the day i bought it and everything works as the day i bought - it... no one that see s it can believe its 16 years old - it was not even garaged but 3 years of its life.. and lived in high humidity 9 years in the se - and 5 years in northern wis harsh winters.. plenty of 20 below starts.. and salt.. i am not here to push americant - but as i see problems with a fairly new car - and have the same problem 5 years now - i have grown to repect and love the car that had brought me 16 wonderful years and never want to get rid of her as long as she runs perfect - and i mean that - it starts and sounds like the day she rolled off the line - the 4.3 - basically the old chevy 350 with two cyl cut off .. good block - good tbi injection.... solid car.. just had to get rid of dexcool for the good ol green..

    anyhow - its a shame - that somehow the mileage can be this off- like i said i have owned 8 cars all got exactly what they should on the old rating system .. and if this one was rated 26 35 it should get it - even if the changed the rating . to be more conservative - i think they had to because the real world - roads are busier then they were 20 years ago.. but not because the ratings were wrong we are justspending mroe time ni traffic.. however - my trips n the altima used - for mileage purposes here were done free of any traffic as a control.. - and for anyone here who thinks we are all stoned and the way we maintain or use our cars- come drive mine for a week - you will have nice enlightenment.
  • chevyonlyfonchevyonlyfon Posts: 10
    edited June 2012
    after all the mileage i have driven - i can come up what i would rate this car at or it should have been rated it .. this is a

    19 city .. 26 hwy .... car.... its not awful its par for a midsize the pre 2.50-4$ gallon days - or maybe late 90s.. era car... but for post ..3 bucks .. to suggest this is 25 city car - and plus 30 hwy car is a joke.. its criminal..

    its better to take the 1990 caprice classic full size chevy and put a 50mpg sticker on it.. by they way 1990 chevy caprice classic was rated at 19- 26 at the time - which i thought was amazing - and it head plenty of power was a huge car.. and did get this - back in 1990 - so .. 19 26 out of smaller car 16 years laters - and published and maketed in a 3$ per gallon era - is criminal- we be better have a car 50% large and this old chevy engine......... there is somethign way way way wrong here/////////// again - this gets what my truck does - or slightly better.. my truck would get this - with aerodynamics of altima.... maybe i will dump an old chevy 4..3 engine in the damn car..

    cars that i have owned that got better milage than my 07 altima:

    1983 camero (151 4cyl)
    1983 mazda 626
    1985 subaru turbo awd
    1990 ford mustang GT

    cars that i have owned that got less mileage than the altima ( only by 15% less)

    1978 ford granada (302 V8 manual tran) 18 city hwy 22
    1997 chevy blazer (4.3 4wd) 15 city 21 hwy..

    chances are if you stepped out on I80 in chicago in 1985 and open fire with an automatic weapon - chances are what ever you hit.. would have gotten better gas milealage than the 2007 nissan altima..
  • thats what i get - almost exactly i am extremely dissapointed....... and i am tired of dealers and websites saying that not real world the ratings are comparison guide.. well - all 8 cars i have own in the past decade got thier ratings... this one doesnt get but about 60 % -- we are not talking like a littel off its like half almost... i cant achieve on hwy - what its rated in the city.... combined driving is way behind city even .
  • 100% of the gas sold in this country contains 10% eth for about a decade now.. its says up to 10% but believe me its probably 10 to 12 % but it should be the problem - u think the epa got different gas when they tested the cars??special gas for them?
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,426
    Not even close to true. Many states sell gas without any ethanol.
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