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Post Your Van Gas Mileage Here



  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    I have an idea about why it keeps coming up....


    When my wife and I were cross-shopping between the Sienna and Odyssey, I had THREE seperate Honda employees inform me (one at a car show, and one each at two different dealerships), that the Odyssey 'only' needed regular while the Sienna required premium. I set the record straight with each one but I doubt it stuck.


    Do the salesman take some kind of Honda sponsored training course in which Honda reps tell their salesmen that the Sienna needs premium?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    It must be retaliation for all the Sienna salespeople telling shoppers that the Odyssey seats will kill their backs.


    Steve, Host
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    I think it also can be because for many years, Toyota did require premium grade gas, even in their four bangers.
  • I've filled the tank 3x and have only 800 miles on the van. 13-14 MPG ?!?! I drive 50/50 city/hwy. I hate my car. Bought it for all the right reasons and regret it.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    I drove a four banger '82 Tercel for 17 years and it never saw a drop of premium.


    Photogeek, lots of people don't start getting close to EPA estimated mpg until they get a few thousand miles on their car. I wouldn't get too concerned yet.


    Steve, Host
  • heywood1heywood1 Posts: 850
    My '04 AWD Sienna approaches 21 mpg on long highway trips, but I've barely broken 15 with around-town driving in this winter weather (and plenty of extra idling). About 17K on the odo now.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    "It must be retaliation for all the Sienna salespeople telling shoppers that the Odyssey seats will kill their backs."


    LOL! best line of the day....
  • chisfu1chisfu1 Posts: 25
    The Sienna only needs unleaded fuel, and if any cars require premium fuel, it will show the sign on the dashboard and labeled on the remote gas tank door...


    I used to own 1996 Lexus LS400 and 1994 Mitsubishi Diamante which have the "premium fuel only" sign on the dashboard and gas tank door! The Sienna does not have any premium label on it... so it only requires unleaded fuel!
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    I am sure it will get better after the engine gets broke in. But if it makes you feel better, I never got over 19.6 on my Dakota truck and that was full highway driving with a six banger. And it wasn't as heavy as your van. I averaged 15-17 in the city with it.


    I'll admit I have a few big mountains to climb going up. But it was a long down grade coming back so it should have averaged out.
  • Okay - let me set the record straight. My impression of the Sienna's need from premium gas did not come from a Honda salesperson. I can't recall ever meeting a salesperson that knew as much about a car as I did (I am not an impulse buyer - I study carefully before shopping for anything). My perception is based on the following: 1) The last time I saw a mini-van comparo in one of the car mags (I read them ALL), there was a mention that the current generation Sienna required premium fuel. I took for granted that the mag was accurate - possibly my mistake, and 2) I owned a V-6 Camry at one point in my life and it did specify premium in the manual. When I purchased it, my employer paid for my fuel. When I changed employers, I weaned it down to regular. As long as I didn't push it too hard, it did not ping. The sum of the above resulted in my earlier comment. Toyota builds a great, reliable vehicle. I would not buy any Toyota mainly because the dealer base, in my opinion, is horrible in SoCal. This is probably meant for another discussion board but it is true. I work with someone who just bought a new Tacoma. He experienced this first hand one month into ownership. Two dealers blew him off and he had to go directly to Toyota. This has been my experience, also. I have a friend that has a Sienna and just loves it. My opinion - if the Sienna sucked, Ody's would be going for premium $$ and I would probably still be driving my relatively fuel efficient but crude DC T&C.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    My father in law owned a four banger Camry a few years ago and had to use mid grade in that. But said the new ones can use regular.
  • heywood1heywood1 Posts: 850
    I've never understood the big deal about a few extra cents for premium. The average driver could pay the difference for a month's usage by buying one less grande mocha latte at Starbuck's...
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,441 much does a grande mocha latte at Starbucks go for? Four bucks? I guess it could add up if you put a lot of miles on your vehicle.I only put around 7k a year on wouldn't be a big deal.
  • ypresiaypresia Posts: 27
    Not the only reason. Several Sienna and Odyssey reviews mention Toyota's premium recommendation as a difference between the two vans.


    And since the Odyssey has better performance with "merely" regular gasoline, it's not much of a jump to conclude Honda's design is better than Toyota's. For this reason.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    Honda's engine is bigger, so more horsepower does not necessarily mean better design.
  • chisfu1chisfu1 Posts: 25
    I believe the second generation Odyssey does require premium fuel (1999 - 2002), then they dropped the requirement in 2002 and made it such a great deal...


    For Sienna, it also recommended premium fuel for optimizing performance for the first genneration (1997 - 2003), Toyota also dropped the requirement in 2003 for the current generation...


    So both of them just need regular unleaded fuel, and that should be the norm for all cars except the sporty and luxury cars which need premium fuel to enhance performance...
  • If I'm not mistaken, the early previous gen Ody's were rated for both types of fuel. Now don't quote me but it was something like 215 HP on premium and 205 HP on regular. I have a family member that has a 01 MDX which requires premium. The 02 or 03 MDX went to regular grade with a boost in HP. As for a few cents difference for premium, in SoCal, a good price today is $1.89 for regular, $1.99 for mid grade, and $2.09 for premium. 12,000 miles per year at 20MPG = 600 gallons or $120.00. That's not chump change to me.
  • garandmangarandman Posts: 524
    Most modern engines and have knock sensors so they will take advantange of higher octane.


    As a result, many new engines are rated for both fuels. For example, the Nissan Quest V6 in our van is rated at 240 hp on premium and 230 on regular. Premium is not required. The torque peak is only five less, however. Going on a diet and taking the extra junk out of the vehicle would probably yield a better return on mpg.
  • We recently purchased an '05 odyssey EX-L RES and are only getting 19-20 mpg. I have spoken to our sales representative and she stated she has had 4 complaints of others with the same model. The Honda Representative was to the dealership and this was the first he had heard of the problem. Perhaps we should contact our selling dealerships, there may possibly be a problem with the 6c engine in these models.
  • heywood1heywood1 Posts: 850
    ONLY 19 to 20 mpg is a PROBLEM? Sounds good to me. After all, this is a big, heavy, functional vehicle that can hold 7 people. And it's about as aerodynamic as a barn.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    Is that combination city/highway? If it is, you have no problem at all.Great if only city.
  • user777user777 Posts: 3,341
    and pretty good if it isn't broken in yet.
  • tracy3tracy3 Posts: 10
    First tank driven 291 miles yielded 18.1 mpg.

    Second tank driven 297 miles yielded 18.04 mpg.

    Van has 610 miles to date. Sixty percent highway miles. The improvement necessary to achieve supposedly understated EPA mpg estimates seems seems a bit daunting. I'll keep driving and keep calculating!
  • jipsterjipster Louisville, KentuckyPosts: 5,441
    I've read a lot about how vehicle weight affects mpg. At what point does anyone think vehicle occupant(or cargo) weight factor in? If you are hauling around 4 or 5 fairly good sized people(say 160-250lb)say total of 1000lbs. And someone else in the the exact(identical down to the fingerprints)vehicle with one other passenger for a total of say 300lbs...thats a difference of 700lbs.In city driving that could make a big difference.May this be part of the reason some of you are having lower mpg than expected?
  • tracy3tracy3 Posts: 10
    You said: "with one other passenger for a total of say 300lbs...thats a difference of 700lbs.In city driving that could make a big difference."


    I believe it would make a difference in city driving (constant acceleration/deceleration). However, the premise of VCM dropping three cylinders is that it requires less energy to keep mass rolling forward under highway conditions. As such, I don't think we would see dramatic differences. I'm also betting that those posting van MPGs aren't regularly driving 300 miles hauling 4 or 5 (160-250lb) occupants. I'm 180lb, wife 130lb, Kid1 40lb, and Kid2 22lb for a total of 372lbs at 18mpg. Funny how some are getting great milage of the lot and some of us are holding on in faith to this ethereal break-in phenonenon.
  • marine2marine2 Posts: 1,155
    While weight does make a big difference, so does tire pressure and the way you drive. Big difference would be the way you take off from a light. Do you do it slow or normal. Or do you take off quick? Fairly quick take offs will burn a lot of gas. Also do you try and look ahead so that you can time the lights and also keep a steady speed? Driving up fast and then having to brake and speed up again will also burn more gas.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    Exactly - steady driving gets the best MPG. If you brake often if hurts your mileage. I easily beat the EPA mileage on all my cars, and coincidently just replaced the front brake pads on my Integra for the first time at 170,000 miles.
  • cindy4cindy4 Posts: 19
    After much research, we have decided on a 2005 Odyssey for our next car purchase. Previously to this, I had narrowed our choices to the Odyssey or the Toyota Sienna or Highlander. But when I took my wife to the dealership two weeks ago, she felt that the Highlander was too small and that the Odyssey, dollar for dollar, was a better value. In the end, I agreed with her conclusion and am making plans on purchasing the Odyssey later this month.


    I have only one major concern with the Odyssey. We all know that the Odyssey tops out at over 4600 pounds and is powered by a 255 horsepower engine. However, the gas mileage difference between what is reported on the sticker (19/25 MPG) and what is frequently reported in this forum are quite different. Some are actually downright terrible and enough to make me question our decision to purchase the Odyssey.


    We plan on driving the van about 12K miles annually so the difference in cost between 18 MPG and 22 MPG would be $245. If we own this vehicle for 8 years, that is $2K MORE. This is substantial and would nullify any better appreciation that the Odyssey would enjoy over the Sienna.


    Any comments to this dilemma would be appreciated.



  • stickguystickguy Posts: 25,358
    mileage reports vary quite a bit, but it does seem that most people aren't getting the EPA numbers (especially on the VCM models where they are 20/28).


    You pointed out that it is heavy, boxy and powerful, so the mileage it does get is really pretty respectable. I doubt you wil average 4 MPG better with a SIenna, but it really depends on how and what type of driving you do.


    If you are truly worried about mileage, make sure to drive slower. Keep it to 65 or below on the highway, and your mileage will be much higher.


    Anyway, with the Ody, if you drive normally on the highway and aren't doing severe city (stop and go short hop) driving, you are likely to get pretty close to the 19/25 overall, at least when it gets warmer (cold temps don't help mileage much at all).

    2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4i Limited Tech (mine), 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's) and 2015 Jetta Sport (daughter's)

  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    Comparing anecdotal evidence regarding real world mileage between two different vehicles is.....iffy.


    If you check the mileage reports which Edmunds has been getting on their long-term Sienna tester, the results are not that encouraging either (averaged 16.0 over 14,000 miles). Does this mean that all Siennas will get 16.0? Not hardly; that particular van spent a great deal of time on urban commutes.


    Personally, for an individual driver, I would expect the Sienna and Odyssey, when driven similarly, to be within 1-2 mpg of one another.


    And, as always, YMMV...8^)
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