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Real world gas mileage for sedans



  • MPG average is 21 - 23 with about 50/50 city-highway

    On highway with cruise on at 75 mph it gets 32 - 34 mpg (6.7 - 7.0 L/100 km) amazing!!!

    I was hoping that I would get better mileage than this, but I guess it's good for me since I drive better (safer) to get better mileage and use the cruise control much more now. I love this car!
  • Anybody on MPG numbers for this car?

    Sticker says 20/26, getting around 16/21 after 2100 miles of easy driving.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    That sounds pretty bad on the highway front - 5 mpg (20%) less than EPA?

    We have a 2004 TL 6-speed rated at 20/30 and it gets 16/30. So our City mileages are comparable, but your highway mileage seems very low. Even our new 911S, rated at 18/26, gets 15/26 after 3,000 miles. All of my last 4-5 new cars have matched or exceeded the EPA highway estimate at 70+/- mph. My marketing director has an E320 CDI which also exceeds its highway EPA. And a business associate had an E55 which managed 22+/- on the highway not sure of the EPA). So if your C320 doesn't start improving soon (i.e. 25+), I'd have it checked out.
  • What you wrote seems pretty much true. All my previous cars exceeded their EPA estimates, that too at 75+ mph. Even city milage on them were close to EPA.

    This one is just 3 months old and milage sucked from day one. I took it to service guys and complained. The loaner that I got at that time averaged around 26 combined miles. That car had 8K miles. I am not sure if its going to improve with time. Service guys though had no answer on this. Work order read "Could not duplicate". :mad:
  • lmacmillmacmil Posts: 1,758
    My '05 Camry SE-V6 has the same powertrain as the ES330. I averaged 23.2 mpg for the first 4400 miles which was about 40% highway driving. I'm getting only 26-27 mpg in pure highway driving (mostly 70-75 mph) and a about 19 in pure city driving.
  • fredvhfredvh Posts: 854
    Thanks for the information Imacmil. From what I hear your mpg is right on as to what others are getting. Happy Thanksgiving!
    Do you know what the RPM are at exactly 70 mph?
    I do not know why the 3.3 cannot get better highway mileage than 26-27 since the EPA highway figure is 29. I would think that an efficient 6-cylinder engine could do better than 26-27.
  • lmacmillmacmil Posts: 1,758
    The engine is turning 2400 rpm at 70. My Olds Intrigue with 3.5 liter engine turned 2000 at 70 and gave me 28-30 mpg on the highway. I am a little disappointed in the Camry mileage but I love the car otherwise. Btw, this is with regular or mid-grade gas. I've read that some people get better mileage with premium although I'd be surprised if it would be enough to offset the higher cost.

    Happy TG to you to Fred.
  • fredvhfredvh Posts: 854
    I am debating between the Camry or the ES330. I am curious to see the new Camry in the spring too. Too many decisions to make. Did you consider the ES330 too before you purchased the Camry SE?
  • lmacmillmacmil Posts: 1,758
    No, I didn't consider the ES330. To me, it did not offer enough extra value to offset the price premium. If I was in the market today, I would definitely wait until the new Camry comes out in the spring. It looks very nice in the pictures.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I think it is a misconception that the lower the RPM's at highway speeds, the better the gas mileage.

    I have discussed this issue with a friend who holds a Masters in ME from Duke and has been a car nut for 25 years on the side. As he explains it, every engine has a sweet spot in terms of efficiency that usually coincides with the point at which torque is sufficient to maintain a cruising speed without requiring excessive fule input or, in the case of an automatic, shifting to deal with hills, wind, tire friction, etc.

    Anecdotally, my last several cars show a big variation between EPA highway estimate, actual highway mileage and RPM's:

    1995 Nissan Maxima (5 speed): EPA 27; Actual 28-29; RPM's at 70 mph = 2,850.

    2002 Honda S2000 (6-speed): EPA 26; Actual 29-32; RPM's at 70 mph = 3,850.

    2004 Acura TL (6-speed): EPA 30; Actual 28-29; RPM's at 70 mph = 2,200.

    2005 Porsche 911S (6-speed): EPA 26; Actual 25-26; RPM's at 70 mph = 2,750.

    As you can see from the above, the TL has the best highway rating, probably due to the testing methods and the low 2,200 RPM's, but in actuality is the worst performer in that it rarely gets its EPA estimate. The Honda S2000 is tied for the worst EPA highway estimate with the 911, but got far better than all others spinning away at over 4,000 rpm at 75mph.

    Bottom line is that low RPM's appear more correlated to good EPA estimates, but inversely proportional to the ability to achieve them in real world driving, at least in the cars I've owned.
  • lmacmillmacmil Posts: 1,758
    The problem with anecdotal evidence is that you can prove just about anything with a carefully selected sample. ;)

    Here's mine:

    2000 Olds Intrigue, EPA 28, actual 28-30, RPMs @ 70 = 2000

    2005 Camry SE-V6, EPA 29, actual 26-27, RPMs @ 70 = 2400

    Since these are similar size cars with similar size engines, actual mileage appears very well correlated to engine speed. I suspect the Olds engine has a broader torque curve and was therefore able to run efficiently at a lower rpm. The sweet spot comment probably applies in this case.

    Bottom line is there is really no way to predict whether a car will fall short or exceed its EPA highway rating without accumulating lots of highway miles.
  • I average 22.5-23.5 mpg in mixed driving and almost 29 mpg on the highway. This is from a car with a V8 and weighs in at 3967 pounds. My 2001 Aurora with the V6 actually averages about the same. I run 87 octane in the 01 and 93 in the 97, because I have to. I drive these cars very spirited, as they were meant to be, and I am very impressed with the mileage.
  • I'm new here, and so am not totally aware of what factors have or have NOT been covered, but...

    There are a few other factors that play into the mileage equation.

    Before the engine threw a rod a couple of days ago, I had an 88 Cavalier with the 2.0 4 cylinder. If I drove at 55-60 MPH, I could get as much as 34-35 on the highway by my estimates. If I drove at 65+ it could be 25-28.

    Other factors that play into mileage are as follows, power output capabilities of the engine. Displacement (aka engine size), driving conditions, speed, weight of the vehicle, and automatic vs standard transmission. Don't forget whether or not the engine is in good tune, and well maintained.

    There are a few others as well, but these are the biggest.

    Light vehicles, with manual transmissions and small, efficient engines tend to average the best mileage.

    Hybrids do better because they're using a small, efficient engine to drive an electric generator which powers electric motors in the wheels.

    Hybrid technology is by no means new, it's just been improved.

    Locomotives have been using this technology for decades.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    2005 Avalon, 280 hp - 2100 rpm @70. 70% highway, balance city - 27 mpg overall. Straight highway runs at a constant 70/75 - just shy of 30 mpg, dial it down to 55/60 and mileage is in the mid 30's. EPA numbers are 22/31, generally pretty accurate on the hwy end, but straight city/around town will yield numbers below 20 especially if you like to use that horsepower.
  • Not that anyone buys this car for it's fuel efficiency, but since I just updated my log:

    2003 BMW M5 6-speed, EPA rated 13/21 ($2,200 gas guzzler tax)

    In 39,000+ miles, I've averaged 19.2 mpg overall, with a 70% highway mix. On pure highway, I get 22-24 mpg. The best speed for this car is 70-80 mph. If I attempt to go 55-60, I need to drop to 5th gear and mileage goes down slightly.

    Regarding the RPM vs. mileage debate, I would add that high performance, precisely engineered "tight" engines tend to have "sweet spots" that are about 50% of their redline. You can see this on BMW M engines, most AMG engines, all Porsche and Ferrari engines. They can also be run at or near redline without adverse consequences. Less precisely engineered engines tend to lose their efficiency much more rapidly as RPM's increase above 30-40% of redline. And if you push these engines for any extended period at or near redline, you may just see engine parts in your rear view mirror.

    So it does not surprise me that a Honda S2000 gets it's optimum mileage at 4,000 rpms, whereas an Olds Intrigue gets it at 2,000 rpms.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    I am shocked that an M5 does not have enough torque/power to go 55-60 in top gear. My Integra has no problem going 40 in top gear. Even a Corolla that is geared quite tall (2100 rpm @ 60) can cruise at 40-50 in top gear with no problem.

    I had always thought the M5 was quite a powerful car.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Control your shock. ;) I have a 2005 911 S that, according to Road and Track, is capable of 0-60 in 3.9 seconds and hits its top speed of 182 almost precisely at redline (7,200 rpm) in 6th gear. But I won't shift into that 6th gear at anything less than 70 mph. My sales manager, a former Porsche factory engineer and test driver is even more extreme - and almost never shifts into 6th gear unless he is cruising at 80+ mph.

    As a former Acura Integra (1987) owner myself, its lack of torque made my "low torque" Honda S2000 feel like a Dodge Viper. I would have had a tough time maintaining 40 mph in top gear on a level highway drafting a semi. Unless you are downshifting into 3rd or 2nd gear every time you need to accelerate, I'd hate to see the carbon build up inside of that engine. Same goes for a Toyota Corolla putting along at 1,400 rpms at 40 mph. Somebody actually told you this is good for the engine? Sue them.

    Everyone has their own driving style. But after getting an A+ check-up at 150,000 miles with my Nissan Maxima 5-speed, I am pretty comfortable with mine. Even with my habit of not shifting below 3,500+ rpms, I averaged 24.1 mpg overall and upwards of 28 mpg on the highway. More importantly its compression test showed all cylinders within 3-5% of a new car tolerance. And virtually no carbon build up whatsoever. My service manager has given me a standing offer to buy the car for 100% of it's "excellent" retail book value, if I ever decide to sell it.

    Don't take my word for it. Ask experts that know and understand high performance, high output (70-90+ hp/liter; 7,000+ rpm) engines. I'd be "shocked" if you got advice different from what I've received. ;)
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    197,000 miles on the engine - no carbon build up. Synthetic oil and valves still look new.

    I don't like to rev engines when cruising (accelerating is different of course). different strokes I guess.

    My Sienna is only going 1,700 rpm @ 60 - no problem. A corvette is only going 1,400 rpm @ 60. Low revs do not hurt a modern engine unless it is knocking.

    BTW the Integra does have more than 70 hp/liter.
  • krzysskrzyss Posts: 845
    You, of course, realize that the same 6th gear is supposed to propel this car to 180mph.
    Some cars are designed to do better than 55mph. If GM designed their cars for higher speeds I think they would be better of.

  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,935
    The good news is that I (finally) exceeded 20 MPG for a full tank.

    The bad news is that I am afraid it is pretty clear that I will never achieve the highway EPA rating. (Unless the gas mileage improves as I add more miles – though at 7,000+ now, I doubt that.)

    I drove from Atlanta to Carrabelle, FL and back. I filled the tank once I cleared the metro area. I filled the tank again at 232 miles (last gas in Georgia) and filled again in Tifton, before re-joining I75 North for the slog home on Sunday PM. (I did not want to count that mileage, as the traffic became bad & worse – as feared \ expected.)

    I averaged these 2 fills, since they were not the pumps I typically use – and there are variances. The 2 fills = 470 miles. Total fuel used = 19.35 gal. Average MPG = 24.3. (Excel, not DIC.)

    I did not exceed 80 MPH on the Interstate section southbound. Once off the Interstate, the speed limits and (um) aggressive enforcement mean that I find 65 the highest ‘reasonable & prudent’ speed.

    A little experimenting with various steady speeds on relatively level roads strongly suggests that DoD is much more likely to engage at 60 – 70 than at any higher speeds. With resulting steep downslope to MPG as speeds rise above 70.

    [ edit:
    RPM at 60 = approx. 1700.
    RPM at 70 = approx. 1950.]

    - Ray
    Still full of Turkey . .
    2016 BMW 340i
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    STILL full of turkey?? Wow, that must have been some Thanksgiving dinner you consumed :P
  • fljoslinfljoslin Posts: 237
    1999 Dodge Intrepid ES 3.2L engine, 4 speed auto with autostick. 225 HP, 225 ft/lbs torque, regular fuel

    City 20-22 mpg. never less than 20 mpg
    Highway Trips (70-74 mph) 28-30 mpg
  • cxccxc Posts: 122
    Our 2002 ES300:

    21 - 23 mpg for the city/highway mix.
    34 mpg for highway at 65 mph. This is what the 0.28 drag coefficient of ES300 does for mpg.
  • Bought 06 Corolla and drove 1500 miles; 70% highway mileage. Got average approx 26 MPG. Compare to advertized 32/38 it is a robbery... What do you think people?
  • lmacmillmacmil Posts: 1,758
    I think you should check your calculations or your driving habits. You should be getting well above 30 mpg with mostly highway driving on a Corolla.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    Depends on the definition of the 25% that was city. Also how many starts and stops were in the highway portion? You can have a 2 mile commute that is "all highway" but your vehicle will never warm up and your mileage will be bad.

    My Integra (EPA 24/28) gets as low as 16 mpg in the winter when I warm it up for 15 minutes before driving in the city(temps well below zero), and as high as 45 mpg if I drive 60 mph with no wind, no hills, no A/C, and the car is already warm when I fill up. It does not take much of the really bad city mileage to bring the highway mileage way down.

  • > Bought 06 Corolla and drove 1500 miles; 70% highway mileage. Got average approx 26 MPG. Compare to advertized 32/38 it is a robbery... What do you think people?

    At 1500 miles, your engine has not broken in yet. Once you approach 7000+ miles, you should see an increase in fuel economy, and by the 15000 mile mark, you should get mileage well into the 30's.

    Keep in mind that the EPA ratings haven't been changed since the 1970's - with the car running at 55mph without air conditioning
  • jefferygjefferyg Posts: 418
    My wife and I went on vacation in our new Passat 2.0T a couple of weeks ago. We traveled from South Mississippi to Pigeon Forge, TN then over the mountain on US 441 to Asheville, then on to Williamsburg, VA and then back home. Over 8 days and more than 2000 miles we averaged 32.2 mpg. 1.2 better than the sticker's highway number. :)
  • jefferygjefferyg Posts: 418
    At 1500 miles, your engine has not broken in yet. Once you approach 7000+ miles, you should see an increase in fuel economy, and by the 15000 mile mark, you should get mileage well into the 30's.

    I'd beg to differ. We had an 03 Civic EX and left on our first long trip when it was less than two weeks old. We got 42 mpg on two different legs of the trip which also covered about 1500 miles. I've never heard of a car performing so poorly.

    Furthermore, I had two rentals over the past six months, one a Chevy Cobalt, the other an 05 Corolla. They are essentially the same car. The Cobalt with only 700 miles on it got better than 30 running around in Nashville Traffic and the Corolla with about 7000 miles got 36 or so on a 200 mile round trip up and and down the hills of southern Missouri.

    If a car doesn't get at least it's city mileage on the highway, you've either got a real :lemon:, you are an extremely aggressive driver , you've got the O/D turned off, or you're driving with your left foot on the brake.
  • krzysskrzyss Posts: 845
    are not related. Unless I am wrong ;-)

This discussion has been closed.