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Hyundai Elantra Real World MPG 2011 MY and earlier



  • rudy66rudy66 Posts: 26
    Try turning your Eco off. Car is more fun to drive and you will get a couple of more mpg. This is for city driving
  • dan_bdan_b Posts: 8
    I have a very light traffic in-town commute and average 22mpg if I drive as conservatively as possible, if I drive with the flow of traffic I get about 18mpg. My dealership told me that my car is preforming as it was engineered to and that no car will get epa rating and that I should switch from Costco to Chevron gas. My take is that they know that elantras are not meeting mpg claims.

    I note that a lot of people on this forum are having the same problem with in-town mpg as I am while other people seem to get the advertized mpg. It seems like this may be a production issue that is affecting only some elantras and maybe there will be a recall later?
  • steven39steven39 Posts: 636
    20 mpg in town seems kind of low..when i purchased my 2012 elantra gls base model in august i got on the first tank of gas about 26/city and about 38/highway.Now that i have a few thousand miles on the car the mpg's have improved as the car breaks in further.iam now getting about 29/city and 42/highway which is right about where the msrp sticker says i should be.Maybe as the car breaks in further the mpg will get even better but i am happy where it's at now.
  • pbm58pbm58 Posts: 16
    I too am only getting about 20 or so city--(and well less than 40 highway) discussion with dealer, I have received all sorts of "explanations" (such as "the cold weather" even though it is 50 degrees here) as well as insinuations about my inadequate driving skills. I have yet to make 300 miles on a tank...anyway, today I called the Hyandai consumer line for my region (these are listed in the addendum consumer affairs booklet that comes with the car). Lovely gentlemen did confirm that company IS aware of complaints from Elantra owners. So, if you are dissatisfied, please make a call--they appear to be treating this seriously, and perhaps will at some point acknowledge there is indeed a problem for some owners (inherent in the vehicle, NOT the driver) and maybe, rectify.
  • well im doing about 26 mpg in town and about 36 on highway for around 30 overall. this is at 15K miles. I am irritated enough to get an Accent hatchback

    I wonder if there is any connection to what plant the Elantras are assembled at. Mine is a 2011 Limited assembled at the Alabama plant
  • Thanks for sharing that information. Would you mind posting the phone number you called? It would save time, allowing others to take action right away.
  • fushigifushigi Posts: 1,218
    Your economy is only about 10% less than the EPA sticker. That's well within a normal variance and can be due to several factors:
    - Ethanol content in the gas. If your area has "up to 10% Ethanol" in the gas you'll lose some fuel economy.
    - Short v. long trips. When the engine is first started it will run rich until fully warmed up. So for trips of only a few miles fuel econ with always be worse.
    - Weather conditions. AC usage (includes when using front defrost) can drag MPG down. Heavy use of electrical components like the rear defrost & wipers will cause the alternator/generator to work harder to keep the battery charged. That increases engine drag which imposes a slight econ penalty.
    - Vehicle condition, mostly the air filter and tire pressure. At 15K your engine air filter is probably about due for replacement.

    It's pretty easy to have 5 or 6 things that each degrade economy by 0.5-2%. Added together a 6-15% economy drop can easily be attributed to vehicle maintenance, available fuel, & the weather.

    And I'm a little confused by your next statement. If your Hyundai has irritated you so much, why would you reward them with another sale?

    FWIW, from those complaining about Elantra MPG I've yet to see anything that indicates the manufacturing plant as a differentiator. My wife's '12 Elantra is Korean.
  • g2iowag2iowa Posts: 123
    Would be most helpful to know how many total miles you've driven in your Elantra and the details of the type commute you drive (e.g., how far is it one way).

    Last 4 times I drove my Elantra I drove no more than about 1 mile in any one direction (to grocery store/Post Office). So I started up a cold car, drove it cold for 1 mile or so (no stop lights or stop signs). Shut it off. Then did same going back home. My mileage in such case is about 21-22 mpg, and that doesn't surprise me, esp. as outside temp is about 25-40 deg F and I've only got about 1,000 miles on her.
  • pbm58pbm58 Posts: 16
    While I agree that various factors are related to mileage of 10-15% below EPA, the fact remains that my '02 vehicle got 390 miles on 10.5 gallon fill-up whereas my brand new Elantra is currently getting 290 on anywhere between 10.2--10.6 gallons. Only one variable has changed in the past decade--not the terrain, the temperature, my weight, my driving techniques, the weight that I transport, nor the fuel, location, or gas pump. The only thing that has changed is my vehicle. I would expect my mileage to improve after a decade, not decline.
  • roadscholar3roadscholar3 Posts: 23
    edited January 2012
    I think there may be a bigger story here regarding this gas mileage issue. Here is an article that just came out about a woman who is suing Honda because her Civic Hybrid has been under-performing relative to the promised fuel savings. Much the same issue we've been discussing. She decided to forego the class action suit and go to small claims to recover her losses. And she's instructing others to do the same. It seems like the jig is up on the much touted fuel efficiency of these new models.
    They've apparently been telling us what we want to hear but there's little substance to it. Has our government been aware all along and looked the other way?
    Here's an excerpt and a link to the story -

    Heather Peters says her car never came close to getting the promised 50 miles per gallon, and as its battery deteriorated, it was getting only 30 mpg. She wants Honda to pay for her trouble and the extra money she spent on gas.

    Peters, a former lawyer who long ago gave up her bar card, has devised a unique legal vehicle to drive Honda into court — a small claims suit that could cost the company up to $10,000 in her case and every other individual case filed in the same manner.

    If other claimants follow her lead, she estimates Honda could be forced to pay $2 billion in damages. No high-priced lawyers are involved and the process is streamlined. - - tml

    And a video - - - - - - - t-Over-Gas-Mileage-Glen-Walker-reports

    These companies may have already calculated into their gains the potential losses that might be incurred from this problem, but I wonder if they've also calculated the anger and loss of trust and loyalty?
    In fact the general mood in this country seems to be that people are at the end of their rope with being gamed by the system and having their pockets picked everywhere they turn.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,631
    Hybrid car batteries have a long warranty. If the Civic's poor fuel economy is related to the battery failing prematurely, that should be a warranty claim first and foremost. And if Honda doesn't honor the warranty, then I could see a small claims court action on that score.

    OTOH, I work with a guy who's very happy with the FE he gets on his Civic hybrid (previous generation car). He routinely gets 50+ mpg. Another testament to the statement that the EPA makes about its FE estimates: "Your mileage may vary."

    I am getting only 27 mpg in mixed driving on my 2010 Sentra right now. That's the CITY EPA rating, not the mixed rating. I think I'll sue Nissan. Or maybe the EPA.

    Except... it's the middle of winter (temp this morning was 12 F), I make a lot of short trips (with some urban highway), and in warmer weather I easily get over 30 mpg mixed driving and upper 30s on the highway under 70 mph. Which exceeds the EPA ratings.

    I think the general mood in this country is that not enough people take time to read and understand the full story (e.g. on EPA fuel economy estimates), and also not enough people take personal responsibility for their actions and the effects of those actions. It's always someone else's fault when something doesn't work out as they think it should have.

    But... cars, especially hybrids, are complex machines, so they can malfunction and break, which can result in lower-than-expected FE. But these kinds of problems don't mean there's some kind of conspiracy by the manufacturer and/or EPA to design cars that don't meet their EPA estimates when driven similarly to how the EPA tests them.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,898
    Totally agree with you that any type of conspiracy theory is silly and the EPA estimates are what they are and apply equally to all manufacturers.

    However, please consider how you would react or feel if you bought a new car that was rated at substantially higher MPG than your present Sentra. You drove the same way and in the same conditions and couldn't achieve any better than the same MPG you currently get. Complaints to the dealer result in "sorry, performing within specs" and responses on line equate to "YMMV" or "you don't know how to drive". Since you're very knowledgeable about achieving good gas mileage I would imagine that it would be very frustrating. Not conspiracy material but very upsetting just the same.

    I personally think that this Elantra MPG issue is probably blown out of proportion relative to the vast numbers of Elantra sold. But from perusing these forums over the years and from what I read in other mediums, this issue seems to have some legs as it applies to a substantial number of Elantra owners.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,631
    However, please consider how you would react or feel if you bought a new car that was rated at substantially higher MPG than your present Sentra. You drove the same way and in the same conditions and couldn't achieve any better than the same MPG you currently get. Complaints to the dealer result in "sorry, performing within specs" and responses on line equate to "YMMV" or "you don't know how to drive". Since you're very knowledgeable about achieving good gas mileage I would imagine that it would be very frustrating. Not conspiracy material but very upsetting just the same.

    I haven't yet purchased or leased a car that has a higher EPA FE rating than the Sentra (almost bought a Prius once but had to cancel the order), but I've driven a lot of them, as rentals and on test drives. Including Elantras, but many others. On some of these, I've achieved significantly lower than the EPA rating. On others, I've met or exceeded the EPA rating. The Elantras I've driven fall into the latter category.

    Each time I consider WHY I got the FE I did. What I've found over the years is this: when my driving is similar to what I do at home, under good conditions (NOT middle of winter), I have no problem meeting or exceeding the EPA numbers on any car I've driven and measured the FE on. But when I drive differently, e.g. very short trips in very hot or cold weather, I don't get the EPA rating for the car. It's a very consistent pattern.

    You may have noticed that when someone complains in these forums about not getting the FE they expect, I encourage them to do a controlled test to see if the car is CAPABLE of meeting or exceeding its EPA rating under controlled, near-ideal conditions. If it isn't, then I advise the owner to check into a problem with the car. No "you don't know how to drive", but an idea on how to get to the bottom of the FE numbers. I've given this advice dozens of times over the years. NEVER--not once--has anyone returned to say they did the controlled test and here's the results. I have to wonder about that.

    There's so many factors that can affect FE--I know you know that. I think it's prudent to investigate all of those areas first, before going down the conspiracy/lawsuit route.

    The other thing that I think is behind complaints on 40-mpg cars like the Elantra... expectations are higher. Also, consider that 10% of 40 is 4. 10% of 22 is 2. I have a feeling there's something psychological at work here. If someone expects to get 40 mpg, for example, and gets only 36, it sounds worse than if they expected 22 mpg and got 20.

    And if there's salespeople who are telling buyers, "Oh yes, you'll get 40 mpg in the Elantra, no doubt about it!"--shame on them! And btw, that IS grounds for a lawsuit IMO--material misrepresentation by an agent of HMA. Proving it in court could be tough though.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,898
    edited January 2012
    Agree with all with a "but". The number of complaints on the Elantra forums and in other media in comparison to other new high MPG cars seems to be substantially higher. I don't think that just Elantra buyers have this higher expectation you speak of and I somewhat agree with. Could it say something about the mindset in particular of Hyundai buyers? I don't have a clue and wouldn't want to go there anyway.

    If I had several cars which I consistently attained EPA numbers and then bought a car(drove it the same, same conditions, blah, blah) in which I couldn't get close to EPA numbers I would personally have a problem with that. It is people with stories like this that I think bear some investigation.

    As far as your test goes. I agree it will give you a very brief snapshot of HWY MPG and may well paint a more rosier picture which may explain why people don't report back being human nature and all. However, that is not how the EPA tests are done. My point is if I consistently averaged 28 mpg in my old car that was rated, say 27-29 avg, and then purchased a new car that EPA avg was 33 mpg but I could only achieve the same 28mpg avg, I would be questioning it like a lot of these people. That is well over 10% off and you would think everything else being equal you should be able to achieve at least a few more mpg from the new car.

    Many of these people are stating that even driving almost to the point of hypermiling they can't achieve the numbers. Like you, I have never had a problem getting the EPA numbers and if I were to drive a lot easier I'm sure I could surpass them. So this is puzzling to say the least.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,631
    Many of these people are stating that even driving almost to the point of hypermiling they can't achieve the numbers.

    I haven't seen that kind of comment from "many" people here. If someone does think they are "hypermiling" in any car and not seeing EPA ratings, I'd like to know what they consider "hypermiling" and what their driving conditions are.

    I don't come close to "hypermiling" but just use some basic fuel-saving techniques, e.g. light foot on the gas, anticipate stops, no long warmups, watch the speed on highways, and no long idling. And I had no trouble getting the EPA rating or above on the Elantra. So I know it CAN be done. But clearly not by everyone, under all conditions. And there's always the possibility of some kind of component problem affecting FE on some cars.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,898
    had no trouble getting the EPA rating or above on the Elantra

    I think the operative word above is "the". If I drove one and didn't get the EPA would you give it the same credence? As you said, there's always the possibility of some kind of component or even a programming problem in some cars which is really all I've been saying all along.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,631
    If I drove one and didn't get the EPA would you give it the same credence?

    I made a simple statement of fact, from my experience. I know that not everyone gets EPA numbers. Heck, if I went out today (12 F) and rented an Elantra and drove it on short trips around town, I bet I wouldn't come close to its EPA rating. But I know it's possible to do, under a mix of city/highway driving in hot weather (summer, in Austin, TX). I have a feeling some folks believe it's impossible to get EPA numbers with the Elantra. That is not the case. But will everyone always get the EPA numbers? No way.
  • I feel like I have been lied too and swindled. I brought the 2011 Elantra because of the 40 MPG. It gets below 30. The AVG MPG reads between 24 and 27. Never 30 and above. I told the dealership at my first oil change. I wish I could sue them and have them take my car back. I hate the hyundai dealership in San Diego. I hate the Hyundai Elantra. I hate Hyundai. I know I am an ordained minister who preaches no hate. Even prayer can't cure me of this hate. I will tell every active duty military not to buy this car because of false advertising and product not living up to the selling hype and published 40 mpg on the sticker. Does anybody know a good attorney in san diego ca. Hyundai I want my money back.
  • I know it's frustrating and unresponsive dealerships can make matters so much worse. Let's just say Hyundai, like so many other car companies, haven't quite figured out what customer service is all about. It seems to end the moment after they've sold you the car...

    As far as process is concerned, you might try reading the article I posted Jan. 3 (above) about the woman who is suing in small claims over a similar issue with her Honda Civic. She's apparently an attorney and created a web site to explain the process. You don't need an attorney for small claims and the potential of actually getting financial compensation is greater than, say, a class action suit.
    I don't know if that's true or not.

    roadscholar3, "Hyundai Elantra Real World MPG 2011 MY and earlier" #575, 3 Jan 2012 2:32 am#MSG574
  • dan_bdan_b Posts: 8
    I think I'm going to do the same with my Elantra :( What a waste of money....
    I will never buy another hyundai in my life again.
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