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Midsize Sedans 2.0

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Comments

  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    For more than you probably want to know about EPA volume calculation, look at: "Classes of comparable automobiles" at:
    http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title40/40c- fr600_main_02.tpl

    Seems to be they multiply head room by shoulder room by leg room (at least as long as hip room is not too different from shoulder). But if this is the normal measurement of leg room that seems like an odd way to calculate volume, because the leg room measure has a bend in it, as I understand it. :confuse:
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,897
    Wow. Kind of complicated. I'm not sure who they are publishing the numbers for then. Seems like if the average car buyer can't understand the math, the resulting comparison numbers are useless. To be honest, I have never even looked at EPA interior volume numbers because they have never meant anything to me. I go by the old hip, shoulder, leg, headroom and trunk space numbers for comparison. Cubic volume just doesn't seem to compute with me as far as comfort and usable space goes.

    Maybe that's the problem. I'm just an average auto enthusiust.....not an expert.
  • dodgeman07dodgeman07 Posts: 573
    It's nice to see they are using some common sense in their measurements but then again it's obvious how the Prius was put into the midsize class by them.....the space behind the back seats!

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////- ////////////////////////////////////////

    But don't forget the trunk is always included when calculating interior volume. Including a hatchback's "space behind the rear seats" is no different than including any other car's trunk.

    The difference with a hatchback is that the cargo volume is usually "taller" than a sedan's trunk and not always usable height.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    That seems to be exactly it. If the Prius had the typical 12-13 cf trunk, it would have fallen in the compact category. Of course, if you put a 12-13 cf trunk on many midsize cars, they may also become compacts according to EPA (eg. Subaru Legacy). It is also true that the Prius has a lot of rear leg room, at least based on the number that is given for that measurement.

    On the fuel economy.gov site they do list the passenger volume and cargo volume for each car separately. So if you just look at passenger volume that gives you a rough idea of the total space available to passengers.

    I checked a few cars using edmunds numbers and it does seem as if the EPA "volume" is just the product of shoulder room, leg room, and head room. This is not at all what I had thought it was and I am not sure what the meaning of multiplying those three numbers together is, it has the units of volume but it is not the volume of anything.

    The knee bend is included when leg room is measured and head room is not the height of the interior, so this is not length X width X height. I think from now on I am going to think of this number as EPA interior "volume". It has the units of volume only because you multiply three lengths not because it is the volume of the car...if I multiply the length of my legs by the width of my shoulders by the length of my torso I can get a number that has units of cubic feet, but it is not my volume.

    Also I wonder what the protocol is for things like setting seat height is when they do these measurements. I would have to think that varying the seat height would affect the number.

    Anyway, ultimately you just have to sit in a car to really know how that space feels. Cars that have similar EPA "volume" sometimes can certainly feel quite different when one sits in them.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I played with this EPA "volume" concept a bit.

    Used a cube of 40 inches on a side as a hypothetical space, this would have an actual volume of 37 cf. I then assumed a "seat" with a depth of 20 inches and moved this "seat" from 15 inches above the "floor" of the cube to 20 inches above and to 25 inches above. Calculating the EPA "volume" I came up with it varying from 18 to 26 cf, with the figure increasing the lower the "seat" was.

    Of course, this is far more variation that one would see in a car, but the point is one could be told that they are going to be put inside one of three cubes, each of which has a "seat" in it. They get to choose which one, all they are told is that EPA "volume" of cube A is 18 cf, cube B is 22 cf, and cube C is 26 cf. What they are not told is that all three cubes are exactly the same, except that the height of the "seat" inside the cube is either 15, 20, or 25 inches above the floor.
  • acdiiacdii Posts: 753
    The way I have looked at a cars "size" when shopping is comparing the actual numbers of the passenger compartment, I don't care what the trunk size is at that point, if I need cargo room I'll use my truck ;) . I look at leg room, hip and shoulder room, and head room. The more hip and shoulder room for me is the deciding factor, followed by leg and then head room. To me there really are only 3 cars in the large car class, they are the Ford/Lincoln/Mercury Panther line Crown Victoria, Grand Marquis, and Town Car. Cadillac used to have a few models that fit this category, but based on hip/shoulder room, they are closer to the mid size cars now. 60" of hip room is great when you have 3 kids, dont need no stinking minivan! :D
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,622
    Also I wonder what the protocol is for things like setting seat height is when they do these measurements. I would have to think that varying the seat height would affect the number.

    That is an excellent point. On some cars, Versa for one but others also including the previous Mazda6, I've found I can raise the seat and move it forward, and have a very comfortable driving position and allow lots of leg room behind me. (In the Versa, it's literally limo-like in back for legroom.) I'm only 5'10" so that is part of it, but that is another reason why published specs on interior volume can be misleading, or at least YMMV. Some driver's seats tilt forward when raised, making it harder to use the same trick to gain rear seat space. Or they don't have enough front headroom to allow it.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I've done the same thing in both a Jetta and Mazda6 (the former barely midsized version), raise the seat up and move it forward, to give a bit more legroom to those in back on those occassions where the back seat is being used by two or more. (When there is only 1 in back they can just sit behind my wife to get extra leg room.)

    I'm about the same height and not long-torsoed. Also having no sun/moon roofs in our cars helps.
  • nomoreford2nomoreford2 Posts: 50
    Since when did a flex fuel Impala get this great mileage. Its know that the flex fuel models get worse millage than the gas version on the impalas.

    http://www.foxnews.com/photoessay/0,4644,7276,00.html#7_165

    Sebring gets 47.8
    http://www.foxnews.com/photoessay/0,4644,7276,00.html#9_165

    The folks who do did this article really needs to do some way more research before posting stuff like this.
  • acdiiacdii Posts: 753
    Maybe they were drinking the E85 instead of burning it, I heard it can cause hallucinations. :P
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    1. These are probably official CAFE numbers, which are much higher than what EPA puts on the sticker (I once made a rough estimate that the new 35 mpg standard is about equivalent to 27 mpg combined on the EPA sticker).

    2. The caption says "It gets credit for burning ethanol...". I believe they get to do some sort of equivalence calculation that gives them bonus credit for theoretically burning ethanol (which of course is BS because few owners actually run around looking for E85). I don't know the numbers, but burning 1 gal of E85 is considered equivalent to burning some lesser amount of gasoline.
  • benjaminhbenjaminh Posts: 1,621
    Wow. The new 2010 Fusion has a 6 speed manual available for no extra cost. Nice. Not even Honda and Toyota have that. I actually like the styling of the Fusion the best of these three cars. And the 2010 improves on what what already a solid and confident look....
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,666
    "The new 2010 Fusion has a 6 speed manual available for no extra cost. Nice. Not even Honda and Toyota have that."

    Not quite true - 2010 Camry also has a 6 speed manual no extra cost.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    The Accord V6 Coupe also has a 6 speed manual.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,622
    So does the Altima sedan and coupe, even in the base I4 models. And also the Mazda6. So 6MTs are not that rare in this class--at least on paper.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    True--on paper. But on the ground?

    I can't speak for 2010 models, but in recent months the only 6mt midsize-ish sedans I've seen on lots locally have been a couple of bargain-basement '09 Mazda 6iSV sedans in appliance white, and a handful of Jettas.

    A few months ago the picture was different here, with Fusions, a Sonata, and even Camrys on the lot with the manual. It looked as though dealers were responding to the recession by ordering more base models--hence more manuals. Of course, those were '09s, and thus 5MT rather than 6MT.

    Despite Nissan's website and literature, I have never seen a current-generation Altima with the manual transmission, at all. Given the hype attending the CVT, I assumed the 6MT had been dropped, till I did some research. Turns out they do still build it, in theory--but there are literally no dealers in Georgia with one in stock.

    So, happy hunting!
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,622
    Manual Jettas are pretty common--but then, they are not mid-sizers, and the kind of drivers who go for Jettas would be more likely to want a stick than typical mid-sizer owners.

    I've seen several Altimas on the lot with a stick. But maybe that was because they couldn't sell.

    I've never actually seen a current-gen Sonata with a stick. Last Sonata MT I drove was a 2005. I've read reports from people who have purchased them, however--including a cousin of mine, who bought a 2007 Sonata with stick. But I think they are pretty rare animals.

    Lets face it, with ATs (including CVTs) meeting or exceeding fuel economy of sticks, and with traffic getting worse and worse every year plus the main mission of a mid-sized sedan being a "family car" vs. a canyon-carver for most buyers, there isn't much of a market for sticks. Usually what I see is bargain hunters who want to pay as little as possible, and sticks can be had on base cars and for $800-1000 less than an automatic. There's some people who buy a stick because they love the feel and control of a manual tranny, but I think those kind of drivers are increasingly rare, especially in this class of car.
  • benjaminhbenjaminh Posts: 1,621
    What backy says is right, but I'm one of those rare people, I guess.

    I got a 2008 Accord EXL NAVI with the 5 speed manual in white. Wasn't a single one like it in the whole country. Had to special order it. Took them almost three months to build it in Ohio and get it to my dealer. But it was worth it. I love the car. And shifting is a big part of why I love it.

    So the Camry has a 6 speed manual now too??? Really? I'm in shock. Is that only for the 2 door?
  • mz6greyghostmz6greyghost Posts: 1,230
    Despite Nissan's website and literature, I have never seen a current-generation Altima with the manual transmission, at all.

    Let me send you a picture of my '07. It's in the garage right now, a 2.5S with a 6-speed manual and Convenience Plus package (moonroof, alloy wheels, etc.) :)

    There were a few in the area, but the Majestic blue with black interior had to be shipped in from Connecticut (I'm in NY).

    The biggest problem I have is the lack of a three-pedal car with a V6, which IIRC is only available with the Altima 3.5SE. The Accord V6-MT is gone (4-door), even the Mazda 6S doesn't even offer a true manual anymore. Preach all you want about a lack of demand, extra $$$ for tooling and EPA certification, etc. I want a stick with a bigger engine, and NOT be forced to take the bargain-basement, no-optioned, wheezy 4-cylinder just to use my left foot when driving... :mad:
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