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Hyundai Elantra Real World MPG 2011 MY and earlier



  • jmurjmur Posts: 2
    i do have alot of short trips i go on. i drive to school a few times a day (about 1.1 miles away from my house), and i usually drive back and forth to my fiances house a couple times a day (less than 3 miles.).

    the 265 miles wasnt for a full was probably between 13-14 gallons. i cant remember off the top of my head. as for my computer, i dont have one. i wasnt aware that the elantra had a trip computer until after i had purchased mine, or i wouldve got a different model.

    as for the "two feet"...yes i do have automatic transmission, but i dont use 2 feet to drive.

    all in all, my problem seems to be your first suggestion with only driving a few miles at a time. is there anything i could do to help me improve my mpg?, and should it really lower my mpg down to the teens? i cant really drive further distances as my school & fiances house are less than 3 miles from my house, haha. thanks for your help thus far though, i look forward to hearing from you again.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,622
    19 mpg seems really low. My DW gets low 20s consistently in very adverse conditions (a/c on, lots of short, stop-n-go driving with a lot of idling), on a '04 automatic. Plus she has a heavy foot. The idling will kill you, as mpg is 0 for that time. I can be averaging 35 mpg driving around town, then I hit congestion and start sitting at lights, and watch that ol' average mpg plummet (my GT has a trip computer). Good suggestions from smith20 above. Also, the Elantra's engine does get better fuel economy with age. I saw about 10% improvement over the first year.
  • smith20smith20 Posts: 256
    Yeah, I agree I think it is probably the 1 and 3 mile trips that are bringing the average way down. I'm not sure that driving style would make much of a difference, unfortunately. Probably the engine is not even fully warmed up by the end of the 1 mile drive to school so it is not burning at it's efficient temperature at any point during those trips. The lowest average I have ever had for a tank of gas was 19mpg, so I feel your pain. I went back and looked at my initial post in this discussion (msg #5) and I see that I estimated that we achieved about 21mpg in crowded, short trip driving, but I would have to say that it has probably gotten a little better than that. I think it probably gets more like 22-23 mpg under those conditions now.

    So, I am hopeful you will see a modest increase in fuel efficiency over the next few months to a year and beyond. Also, I think you'll probably get really good mpg if you ever take the car on a long continuous trip somewhere. We got on three or four moderate (200-400 miles) driving trips each year and we have gotten great gas mileage every time.

    Good luck to you.
  • Serious. For those one to three mile trips around the bend and over the hill to grandma's house we go... pedal! Great gas mileage assured! I mean, get real. How in the world is the engine given much of a chance to warmup sufficiently on trips like those? Can you imagine in a few years the wear and tear buildup going on under the hood? You'll be complaining about more than poor gas mileage at that point I'm afraid when the engine repair bills start showing up. I can see it now, "I'll never buy a Hyundai product for the rest of my life so help me..."

    Update: '05 GT 5spd with 3500 on the odometer - 35.1mpg on the trip readout. Again, probably 80% highway, 20% everything else (no drag racin' and NOoooo cold start 1 to 3 mile trips.).
  • 5port5port Posts: 395
    I agree with zoomzoomitis about the "buy a bike". I live 2 miles from work and have been biking as much as possible. However...short trips do not "Kill" a Hyundai. If they did the company would be out of business. What short trips do is not give the engine a chance to get to operating temp. This is not the end of the car. One must adjust the maten schedule to make up for this. It will give you lousy mileage though.

    If I dont change my oil every 2K miles in the winter moisture builds up in the oil. So I do 2K oil changes using Castrol GTX 5W-30. Once a week I take the car on a 40 mi highway drive.

    01 GT
    32K miles
    Orig Batt
    Orig Muffler
  • Just curious, how much space between your front bumper and the back of the truck when drafting? And at what speed would that distance hold true?
  • bhmr59bhmr59 Posts: 1,598
    Those short haul trips really do kill MPG. Most of my driving is 3 to 5 miles and that's with the car parked for a few hours. Unless it's real cold out, the engine temp shouldn't drop too much in a half hour---engine should warm up real quick. In warm weather my car can "sit" after a 3 mile drive and be warmed up within a mile. It takes longer now that the temps are in the 30's or 40's. When real winter sets in, it will be worse.

    Bought my '05 Sonata in April. Last winter my privious car took 2.5 miles (out of a 3.6 mile drive to work) to get warmed up. That car gave 18mpg in warmer weather and 16 mpg in the winter...all due to temperature.

    Someone who drives 10 miles to work will get better milage than someone who drives 3 miles to work, assuming similar driving conditions. The multiple short hops, one right after the other, won't kill MPG the same as a short hop followed by the next one a few hours later.
  • smith20smith20 Posts: 256
    Well, it's tempting to get very close, but that is not safe. I probably follow about 4-5 car lengths back at speeds between 55-70mph. It's probably not as efficient as following say only one length back, but that would be ridiculously dangerous. Furthermore, I imagine that would seriously anger the truck driver and I don't want to do that. Even if it's just reducing the effective windspeed on my car by 10 or 20 mph, that will make a big improvement since drag corresponds to the square of the speed.

    Driving behind the trucks is probably very boring for most people too. You can't see too much ahead and you have to deal with the trucks losing speed on even modest inclines.
  • I have a 2005 Automatic Hyundai Elantra GLS 4DR. with a 1000 miles on it. I make 10 mile trips hitting one or two lights plus let the car warm up in the morning and I am getting 23MPG. I assume it will get better as the car breaks in. :)
  • I hear ya. I have a little longer drive to work and about 2/3 of it is freeway. On my very first tank, I got over 29 mpg. Since then I've been getting 25-26 mpg on average, with a low of about 22. I made a 300 mile round trip Friday, mostly freeway, and got 29 mpg; I was hoping for 30 at least. I have an 05 GLS hatch with AT and 2000 miles on the ODO.

    I think maybe the great fabulous mileage numbers you see on the boards are primarily from Elantras with sticks, unfortunately, but I think we should both see an improvement by about 5000 miles based on what I've read.
  • smith20smith20 Posts: 256
    I've been getting some personal mpg records in the last two months and I have about 19,500 miles on the car right now. So, it might improve even well beyond 5,000 miles. My Elantra's fuel efficiency corresponds incredibly closely with its route . . . for example the trip computer is currently reporting 21.2 mpg so far on the current tank since it has all been a combination of my short distance stop-and-go commute and short trips to stores, as well as the cooler weather.
  • Has anybody heard if Hyundai is going to be bringing over our diesel counterparts from across the pond in Europe? I hear they get even better gas mileage than the Hybrids we have here in the USA. I e-mailed Hyundai, but have yet to hear back from them. Any info would be great. Thanks........
  • I made a couple of mods that perhaps increased my mileage. The first was to remove the duct connecting the air filter box to the resonator in the fender. The engine is a little louder under load but otherwise I can't tell too much difference under normal driving conditions. The second was that I checked my tire pressure and saw it was down to about 27 each side. I pumped the fronts up to 36 and the rears up to 32 (on advice of another forum). After the air filter change, my mileage increased to 27.5 mpg; after pumping up the tires I'm up to almost 29. I had been getting about 25 overall and my drive isn't significantly different (normal commute).

    However, two factors may be helping me: First, it's finally cooling off and I'm not running the AC all the time; second, the odometer is up to about 3500 miles, so maybe the car is breaking in.

    I plan to back out the air filter mod at some point and see if the mileage decreases any; I'm not real fond of the noise the car is making under load. It's louder, but definitely no sexier.
  • gt_fangt_fan Posts: 159
    I bought a 2002 GT 5-speed brand new and now have over 78,000 miles. I've used a spreadsheet to track every fill up and it's lifetime average to this point is 33.21 mpg.

    Very early on I found myself "driving to the meter"- changing my driving style to see how high I could get the little LCD readout. For the first few thousand miles I was hard pressed to break 30 mpg, but since my GT has broken in I usually do better than 34.

    To help increase my mileage, I did the same intake modification as doohickie (see above) and bumped my tire pressure up as well. The biggest thing though, was learning how to time the lights and consistently short-shifting.

    I'm always looking way ahead for what the lights are doing and I'll get off the throttle and coast while the cars in front of me are racing up the light. They'll come to a complete stop and when the light turns green and they take off, I'm just coming up behind them. Usually I don't even have to shift down any lower than third to resume my place in line. I do try to avoid doing this while traffic is heavy or on two lane roads when people are behind me.

    I've never had the car out on a long highway trip. Our family vacations are all in the minivan and the GT is strictly for commuting. My daily drive is mostly interstate and I pretty much stick to the right lane at 60-65mph. In my previous car (an Audi Quattro) I'd always be that %&#@ in the fast lane, tailgating and flashing his lights at the slowpoke who was putting along at a "mere" 80 mph! When traffic was lighter I would often have the Audi cruising along in excess of 110 mph. The Hyundai's little readout has probably saved me a lot of money in speeding tickets as well as gas!
  • doohickiedoohickie Posts: 949
    The biggest thing though, was learning how to time the lights and consistently short-shifting.

    I am working on timing the lights. The short shifting isn't really an option with the AT, though, but I'm learning to let the engine play out instead of gunning it. My mpgs went from about 24 on my daily commute to a little over 26 just by taking it easy. I got a CEL and reset my ECU to clear it, and the following tank got almost 28 mpg in mixed driving, which is what I had been hoping to get all along. Granted, I have to drive easy to get that, but I'm getting used to it.

    (BTW... I went back to stock intake because I just wasn't crazy about the sound without the resonator.)
  • gt_fangt_fan Posts: 159
    Actually, I'm considering going back to the original intake myself. I removed the resonator more to increase horsepower than to increase mileage, but since I rarely rev past 3000 rpm nowadays, I might as well quiet things down a bit...

    Wow, I must be getting old. At least I'm not driving a Buick yet!
  • gary045gary045 Posts: 81
    I bought an 04 5 spd new. I'm very pleased with the quality and features for the money.
    My first trip to NY from WV produced a shocking 37 mpg at speeds of 60, 65, and some 70mph. Was still breaking it in. I expected about 33.

    Then did a trip to Houston at 70+ speeds and my mpg went down to 33-35. Not bad.
    I just wish they would come out with a 6spd tranny to improve high speed crusing. The rpm at 70 is just above 2,700 and I hate to run the eng high than that for 10 hrs. Wear and tear on the engine etc.
    It could stand to run at 2,400 rpm with a 6th gear no problem at 70 and still have plenty of torque for cruising over hills.

    Cruise is a pleasure in this car. No lugging at all on the steepest mountains of WV. I had a chevy trk that was always shifting down and up on the slightest grade. Was very annoying. But not this car.

    If you're getting crummy mpg I think it is a good idea to disconnect the battery for a minute to reset the CPU. Then start driving more conservative as it relearns your driving style. It's nice to get a second chance isn't it? :)
  • gary045gary045 Posts: 81
    Sounds right to me banjoec. The sweet spot is in the 55-65 range for best mpg.
    At 70+ the mpg drops off to 32-35 area with rpm at 2,700+.
    We need a 6th gear for 70+ cruising with great mpg.
  • doohickiedoohickie Posts: 949
    Resetting the ECU at about 8000 miles seems to have helped.... where I was getting 23-25 mpg in mixed driving, I am now suddenly getting 27-28. I fully expect I could make 30s on a long trip.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,622
    You can easily get mid-30s on the automatic Elantra on long trips if you keep the speed reasonable. I have gotten mid-30s on a couple of 200-mile trips on my Elantra GT, and one trip was with five people and luggage. Tires were 35 psi, A/C on part of the way.
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