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Jeep Liberty Real World MPG

steverstever Posts: 52,683
edited September 2014 in Jeep
This discussion is for reporting on your Liberty's gas mileage. Please mention your odometer reading and your driving style, city/highway mix or anything else that will help others compare their mileage to yours.

If you have the diesel flavor, check out the Jeep Liberty Diesel: MPG - Real World Numbers discussion.


Steve, Host


  • In response to some of the discussion regarding MPG. I own a 2002 Liberty Limited with the 3.7 and I get 22 MPG in mixed driving and I get 27 MPG in the highway. The only thing special I do to my Jeep is use Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil. I have a limited slip rear end so I never loose traction as some have posted. I just heard about the lower ball joint recall and realized I missed the lower ball joint recall back in 2003. Guess I should have that fixed. I haven't had any problems what so ever with my Liberty, I love it!
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    beniker: Please excuse my bluntness, and you might even say rudeness. Having lived a good length of time, life teaches a lot of things. One thing I am able to spot is a mistake or a miscalculation. I am very positive you have made an error. There is no way you could achieve you gas mileage you claim with a 3.7 V-6 with a 4 speed automatic transmission.
    I am sure it's fun to joke with people. I could say my CRD liberty gets 37 mpg too, but everyone knows that's not true. Just as we all know what you have said is a joke as well. And you caught someone who bit into your hook.

  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    On my 03 Liberty I average 15-16mpg strictly in town with some stretches of 2-3 miles of 45 mph cruising a few miles between stops. If I add about 50% interstate it moves to 18 mpg---rarely any higher. Straight interstate at 60-65 mph I can average 22-23 mpg if conditions are favorable. With a headwind or rain-- it drops to 20 mpg. There have been trips where I have a bit of a tailwind and keep it at 55 mph where I can get to 24 mpg for a stretch but that's the best I've done in three years. It can help a bit if you can fuel up with
    %100 gasoline and avoid the ethanol blends but that's about all we have around here.
    3.7 with automatic is what I have. I don't usually put much effort into driving with super efficiency but if you are really careful, you might be able to do a bit better.
  • Well at least there's a little life over here so I'll repost my message from the main board... (Cleverly rephrasing it so it sounds like a question about gas mileage :) )

    I was wondering if anyone can comment on the 6 speed manual version of the Liberty? Such as what kind of mileage do you get?

    Also was wondering about how it shifts, whether the clutch engagement is touchy or progressive and what rpms are normal for highway cruising?
  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    Don't have a stick but I do have a story to relate in this regard. I was in the market for a cheap ride in 1992 and ended up deciding on a plymouth / dodge sundance stick with air. The deal seemed pretty good back then so I went to two large dealers and drove six cars identically equipped. I did that because I wanted a car that shifted, idled and accelerated smoothly right away. Even though these cars were identical, my test drive efforts were worth it. The cars with the most attractive colors unfortunately were poor drivers--hesitation-vague shift points etc. I would have chosen poorly. The dealer said that once I bought it they would correct all concerns. I didn't have to get involved in that fiasco because one car stood out. It was bright red -- not my first choice but it drove and shifted way better than the rest so I bought it. Kept it nine years and 114 k miles and only had issues with the a/c the last 3 years.
    My advice--- go drive at least two or three Liberty stick shifts and see what you think. Previous posts don't seem to indicate a great deal of mpg improvement vs automatic -- you save bucks when you buy but lose big when you sell.If mpg is a big consideration in your choice of cars, the Liberty won't make you happy. It is what it is -- a heavy little truck that I find a lot of fun to drive. The other problem is that you have to settle for part time 4wd with the stick which limits its usage to extreme conditions like off road and very poor traction surfaces. I like the full time option a lot.
    Go take a few test drives and let me know what you think. The most important opinion on this issue is yours. Have fun!
  • I have an '05 Liberty Limited running synthetic oil, a K & N air filter, and Goodyear Fortera tires. I'm an easy driver. I bought it in May of '05. It now has a little over 26,000 miles on it. In that time it has averaged overall 18.4 MPG at an average 41 MPH according to the elapsed time. I drive predominately hiway with some city driving. My guess is that it gets around 15 or so around town and strictly on the hiway between 60 - 65 MPH it will get 23 - 24 MPG. If I get up to 70 it will drop to 20 MPG. If there is a headwind, side wind, rain or cold weather it will lower the fuel economy accordingly. I can't say that I'm disappointed with the fuel economy because I knew what I was getting. I have 4 wheel drives since the 70's and for its weight the Liberty does well. I would much rather drive it than an econobox.
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    libbman: I am pretty sure you are judging what you fuel miles per gallon is by what the electronic readout says in the overhead information center says. Having had a Limited I can assure you this readout is very far off. The only real way to know what your mpg is requires you to do it the old way. Fill the tank up as much as will go in. at the next time to put fuel in fill it up all the way. Now form the current mileage subrtact what the mileage was when you filled it us the time before. Now devide the gallons into the miles drivem. That is the true miles per gallon. Our 2005 Limited Liberty got a pretty consistant 15 to 16.5 mpg. The very best was 18mpg. There is just a very slight chance with a good wind pushing you, than 24 mpg could be reached. The 3.7 with the rear end they come with just won't get 24 mpg if even that. Now our Liberty CRD gets 26.4 mpg and that's doing 73 mph with the air on.

  • Actually I did figure it out manually. I had 26,076 miles on the odometer and I put in a total of 1418.817 gallons since I bought my '05. That figures out to 18.378 MPG. I keep records on a monthly basis. I have checked my overhead and it comes out approximately .1 to .3 off per tank and that could depend if I try to get that last drop in or not. I have had 4 Jeeps with overheads and this one is the closest to acurate. My odometer does read a little slow, about 1 MPH slow and that is measured against my GPS.
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    libbman: I can honestly see 18.4 miles to a gallon, but how anyone gets 24 out of a 3.7 is amazing! I know that some people can milk a 6,000 lb Caddy and get 20 mpg, but I sure don't know how it's done. It could be just right temp. conditions, and everything is just right, then it comes up perfect mpg.

  • caribou1caribou1 Posts: 1,354
    These values were taken when refueling using the trip mileage counter and are already averaged per type of driving condition:
    - 4WD at 7500ft altitude 18L%KM ~~13 USmpg (this one is less accurate)
    - heavy rain/snow 12.5L%KM ==19 USmpg
    - local city traffic 11.3L%KM ==21 USmpg
    - interstate 80mph 10.23L%KM ==23 USmpg
    - mixed / commuting 10L%KM ==23.5 USmpg
    - interstate 70mph 9.46L%KM ==25 USmpg

    My "global" average mileage is now 22.5 USmpg after 3 years and 52,000 miles. This comes to almost 12,500 USD worth of diesel fuel over here :sick:
  • I've driven the same '02 Liberty Sport 4x4 w/ 3.7L engine (not mine - a family member's) on two long-distance trips. The first was a one-way from North Carolina to Maine in October '04, almost all on multi-lane interestates, typically driving with the CC set at 5-10 over the limit. My average MPG (computed the old-fashioned way) was 22.8. This past July I took a round-trip from Maine to upstate New York, about 2/3 on interstates, but a good chunk on rural state roads and some in town, 5-10 over again whenever possible. Average MPG for that trip was 19.9.

    It ain't great, but it's better than the miserable mileage my on-its-last-legs '95 Trooper is getting - 16 MPG on mostly highways if I'm lucky!
  • Greetings all. Just purchased a 2003 Liberty Sport 4wd with the auto transmission. Here's my question - would anyone recommend any simple fixes or upgrades that get a decent payback with fuel economy. I've seen some refer to K&N air filters, figure the obvious stuff like putting air in tires is always good. Any suggestions on things you've done that worked out good?
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    mmontgomery:How many miles does your Liberty have on it? Are you sure that the place you bought i from did a spark plug change, and air and oil filter change as well? What kind of mpg are you getting?
    These things I mentioned are very basic to good mpg. However if the things above have been done, here a few things to bring out better mpg on any vehicle. Go to Synthetic 5-30w oil. Make sure the tire pressure is 33 to 36psi. Use the Cruze control as much as possible. Avoid jack rabbit starts. Don't use the defroster any longer than you have to, this uses the air conditioner to take the moisture out of the air, using fuel like in the summer. Don't let the engine warm up for long periods of time. Run some injector cleaner in your gas tank to glean out injectors and valve body. If spark plugs were changed recently, pull one out and make sure its a Champion, and gaped at the right measurement. Look under the Liberty and make sure the gas line does not have a leak of any kind. You can even make sure the transfer case lubercant has been replaced and is clean and full, the same goes for the axles as well.
    My experience is when someone is trying to sell a used vehicle they make the inside and outside detailed real nice, but the upkeep items they do fool with. You can't see those items, and that's where money gets spent rather rapidly, but it's more important than making the outside and inside look brand new.
    If you did everything I said the mpg that you will gain proberly won't be what you are wanting to achieve. In tip top shape expect 15 to 16mpg and on the road 17 to 19mpg

  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    Right on Farout, but you forgot to suggest only driving to destinations that are downhill and downwind from your starting point.
  • Actually, I filled up tonight for the first time, clocked just over 16mpg for a mix of local and over road driving. So I checked the air filter, and surprise! - filthy. Carmax says they do a multipoint service / inspection, this is something a bit obvious to have overlooked. Checked tire air, and the other stuff, and it looks fine. Will wait to see what impact a new air filter and routine driving has on me.


  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    jayrider: I just always assume those things are present. Remember the test of a real Jeep driver is to brag about how many miles you get to a gallon. Always make your mpg at least 2mpg more than the other guy.

  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    mmontgomery: In my 46 years of driving I have not seen fuel mileage go up very much by just changing the air filter. Yes, maybe 1/2 mpg or less, but not a big amount.
    Let me show just what the difference in mpg makes. Say you are getting 16mpg. You want 19mpg, that might make you feel much better about mpg your Liberty, right? Well the truth is there is only .03 per gallon difference between 16mpg and 19mpg or .60 cents a 20 gallon tank full. But there is more to economy than just .03 cents a gallon. We got our 06 Liberty Sport for $3350. less than we could have bought a Compass equipped as close to the Liberty as possible.
    The Compass 2.4 CVT II gets maybe 24 mpg. the Liberty 17mpg. At $.035 divided into $3350. = 95,714 miles before you would notice any savings in fuel compared with the Compass with the 3.7 V-6 Liberty. So just fuel mpg is not the big answer for cost per mile of driving.
    Just drive like this Jeep has to last you for 10 years, and you will be far a head.

  • Farout -- agree with your calcs. Filled up second time (first time after my first complete fill) and saw mileage improve by 1.5mpg -- makes me think they don't exactly top off the tank totally. Did get Carmax to change the filter, although that was half way through the tank -- doubtful that was it.

    I do think I'd much rather have the Liberty than the Compass, though. Nicer handling, feels far more solid. The commute isn't all that bad for me, most of it is freeway and the car it's replacing - a 98 ford ranger - got about the same mileage.

    Thanks for all the comments, guys!
  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    Yeah-yeah Farout, but just think of the bragging rights you would have accrued after those 95,714 miles passed beneath the Compasses' leaking oil pan. Not to mention the lifestyle changes brought about by the new found riches accumulating every time you fill'er up.
  • faroutfarout Posts: 1,609
    We all have seen these down right lies about what great gas mileage the Liberty gets in the News Paper adds especially in the Sunday paper. I saw a Ford dealer add for a used 2004 Liberty for a 3.7 gas, saying "Great on gas 30 mpg!" The same dealer had an add saying the Escape had a V-8. Must be a new sales person?

  • Actually, the Liberty would get 30mpg if it were being towed by the V8 Escape.

    I have one of each, and they get about the same real world mileage -- the Liberty has more of a truck feel to it but has more oomph in the engine compartment, but the Escape drives a bit nicer on longer trips.
  • All I can say is that's what my trip computer tells me and I verify it by dividing the number of miles I drive with the gallons I use to fill up my Jeep. You say impossible... Nothing's impossible... Maybe my Liberty's exhaust, intake manifold, valves, etc. just came together just right. Maybe the fact I live in Honolulu? I'm just telling you what I get... :shades:
  • I have an 02 and stopped looking at the mpg. If you have a jeep then you can't care about MPG. They are notorious.
    A V6 3.7 is a hefty engine don't expect to get toyota miles.

    You bought a Jeep to go rough, did you think you could go cheap too? Want Miles get a Rav4 just stay off the trails you will block them when that thing gets stuck.

    Having a Jeep is a auto love thing. You tell someone you have a Jeep then move on. They don't get it. They don't understand but they respect you. A Jeep is Respect.

    There are Rolls, Mercedes, Porsche, and there are Jeeps.
    Even a Hummer does not get the respect a Jeep does.
    It says something about the owner. You are a free spirit, able to go over obstacles.
    As the legend goes--
    It's a Jeep thing, you wouldn't Understand.!
  • I have the 6 speed I average 20mpg I have seen 23 and as low as 18 using 4wd in the dead of winter.
  • caribou1caribou1 Posts: 1,354
    It seems you're not gaining anything with the manual shifter. Are you happy with it? How easy is the clutch in heavy traffic after a day's work or a long walk in the forest?
  • Between 18 and 23 mpg with an average of 20 sounds pretty good compared to most other postings i've read. Usually people with the automatic are getting more like 15 average. I suppose it depends on where you drive too.

    How is the manual to drive? I would guess since its a big engine it should be easy to shift but maybe a little slow to engage. (compared with the small cars i've driven with manuals.)
  • Our 2002 Liberty Sport will do about 13 around town and at best 21 on the highway. 2005 CRD does 26 all of the time but that is mostly highway.
  • My big problem with my Liberty is she is a piggie, 12 mpg city and 14 mpg highway. I have never owned another car I did not get in the EPA rating for gas mileage. My 94 Jetta got even better than the EPA rating.
    I am naming her Miss Piggy.
    Anyone else disappoint with the economy of the Liberty? Is it just mine or do they all do this bad?
  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,602
    you must have a problem because most everyone is reporting the low 20's cruising on the highway at 60 mph.
  • Bought this vehicle new for my wife. After review of all contenders in this class, she settled on the Limited model, hoping to receive respectable mileage. This is our 4th Jeep, we know we sacrifice a little but this "vehicle" gets absolute miserable mileage. We now have 5,000 + miles and I have tracked every tank from the 1st 200 miles. Best ever achieved is 18.4 on a 300 mile all highway trip. Generally see 14-16 on the highway with mileage around town at 10 mpg (really) or less. After 1st 3,000 miles, switched to Mobil 1. No dramatic gain except an excellent oil. 2 different dealers have said nothing they can do except drive it and get some miles on it, it will improve with break-in. 5,000 miles and no improvement. Very disappointed and thinking of getting rid of this "lousy" vehicle. Our 2000 Gr. Cherokee 4.7 L gets better. My Suburban got better. Jeep is not wanting to do anything and have turned a deaf ear to the issue. Anyone have any suggestions to help improve the mileage?? If it weren't for the "crappy" mileage, we could probably learn to like the car, but this is a major irritant. :mad:
This discussion has been closed.