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According to the New York Times, EPA has just proposed changing how it calculates fuel economy for new cars and trucks so that the results will better resemble the real world. The story continues:

"As a result, the fuel economy estimates for city driving would drop by 10 to 20 percent, while fuel economy estimates for highway driving would fall by 5 to 15 percent, the agency's administrator, Stephen L. Johnson, said.

"Hybrid-electric vehicles, which run off both gasoline engines and batteries, could see their fuel economy estimates for city driving drop even more than conventional vehicles. The E.P.A. said its estimates for hybrids' fuel economy would result in a 20 to 30 percent drop, although estimates for highway driving would drop the same 5 to 15 percent as gasoline-powered automobiles, the agency said.

"That is because hybrids, which are growing in popularity because of their fuel-thrifty reputation, are more sensitive to changes in road condition and to the use of fuel-draining technology, the agency said."


(To view the whole story, go to http://nytimes.com/2006/01/10/politics/ ... r=homepage

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ABC news just reported a segment on this topic. The final statement was that the 2005 Prius in actuality resulted in 37.3 mpg rather than the advertised 56. No specifics as to whether this was an average of highway or city driving, AC, speed, or other factors--all alluded to in the segment. Anyone else see this?
 

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evander said:
ABC news just reported a segment on this topic. The final statement was that the 2005 Prius in actuality resulted in 37.3 mpg rather than the advertised 56. No specifics as to whether this was an average of highway or city driving, AC, speed, or other factors--all alluded to in the segment. Anyone else see this?
I saw the newscast. I believe they were talking about "real world" every day driving. That would be a combination of city and highway. I think the 37.3 mpg for the Prius is low. Consumer Reports stated an overall MPG of 44 in their testing. I tend to believe the 44 as it is a lot closer to what I have experienced over 2 years with my 04.
 

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I saw that as well and was amazed that the new EPA test on the Prius gets such terrible mileage. I didn't get mileage that bad when I drove Phoebe out of the dealership with just 3 miles on the speedometer.
 

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I have used CRs 44 as more realistic measure. I have been happy as I have never dropped that low. My lifetime average for 15K miles (interstate, county roads and some city driving) has been 50 mpg. I would be shocked with the 37.3 mpg proposed. My WORST tank (skeptical on individual tanks due to variance in filling) has been 49 mpg.
 

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My lifetime calculated is 55 MPG. It feels as though the mileage dropped some since the recall, to about 52. I can't get the high 50's as much as I used to, especially if I have the climate control running. The car seems to not get those mileage spikes that raised the average.

Yet, the current EPA estimate of the 2006 Prius is still 60/50/55, though it has the recall programming in it.

By the way, it seems the mileage seems to go up if have extra SOC on the battery, which usually occurs with lots of regen, or if ICE runs longer than expected.

Also, I too found that CC sometimes isn't as efficient as manual control, especially low speeds. When I near home, turning onto the last secondary road for the last mile of my leg, the speed limit is 35. Often the car will go stealth once I reach that speed, and will stay there even in CC. However, just as I approach my turn onto a side street, there's a bit of an incline in the road. With CC, the ICE kicks in to compensate. With manual control, I can ease off the accelerator to get over the hump, losing 1 MPH, then I can gradually get back that lost speed. Or, I can gradually get to 36MPH, then lose that 1 extra MPH at the hump.
 

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The EPA is correct to make MPG figures real world for conventional vehicles. After all, the great majority of drivers who are not very mileage conscience with gas prices still in the $2 range, are not interested in changing their driving techniques. As long as they typically do jack rabbit starts and accelerate toward red stop lights, they can't be expected to achieve the outside potential of the current EPA ratings.

However, if the EPA rates a Prius at 37.3 MPG, that will not be real world as the typical Prius driver has a different mindset than other drivers. And the MFD Consumption display trains you to be an even more efficient driver. I do agree that the current rating is too high as the majority of Prius drivers cannot regularly achieve 61/51 MPG given real world factors of unlevel driving terrain and cold climate. But I think, reading MPG reports here, that something like 53/43 would be reasonable. Then more than a few of us could brag we actually exeeded EPA figures.
 

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As I stated before, I have had mileage in the mid to low 30's this Dec. with the cold weather. I've not yet hit 50 with a tank, so I calculate my average mpg at around 40.
 

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evander said:
As I stated before, I have had mileage in the mid to low 30's this Dec. with the cold weather. I've not yet hit 50 with a tank, so I calculate my average mpg at around 40.
Mine seems to average around 40 mpg as well in the winter. Might have something to do with the funky winter fuel mix we get in the Central Valley of California. Another is that I turn the display screen off more often; consequently, I floor it more often as well since the screen isn't nagging me.

I do know I get less mpg with Chevron than Shell fuel (seems to be about 4 mpg gain with Shell over long-term testing between the two). Just that I hate looking for a Shell station when there are so many Chevron stations around me.
 

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EPA estimates are crap!! Imagine that, the gov't is wrong???

Those EPA estimates are crap. I have never averaged less than 40mpg and the lowest I did average was going 80+mph the whole way down to FL from DC.

Normally I average around 51 and change.
 

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I don't think any EPA method of calculating average MPG is going to satisfy anyone. Even we, as a Prius community have a very wide range of averages. Of course we all can predict why a person gets the average they do, but still.
 

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evander said:
As I stated before, I have had mileage in the mid to low 30's this Dec. with the cold weather. I've not yet hit 50 with a tank, so I calculate my average mpg at around 40.
Wow, the 30's?!!?
I have never seen it that low. I average about 50 - 55 in the summer and 45-50 in the winter. Really trying, I have gotten 60.

Spike
 

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The EPA has been off on so many vehicle that they have a lot of catching up to do. I cannot imagine how they managed to get such low numbers for the Prius. I think it should be a range for the Prius instead of a set number and probably with a disclaimer to Chat or Online! I still get better on a longer freeway trip than in the city. Even as a lead foot and a slight jumper I can get low to mid 40's in hilly SD county and near 50 on a trip. At 5 months ownership I still feel like I am learning how to best drive my car.
 

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Spike said:
evander said:
As I stated before, I have had mileage in the mid to low 30's this Dec. with the cold weather. I've not yet hit 50 with a tank, so I calculate my average mpg at around 40.
Wow, the 30's?!!?
I have never seen it that low. I average about 50 - 55 in the summer and 45-50 in the winter. Really trying, I have gotten 60.

Spike
My ICE has been running a lot this winter with defrosting windows, blustery cold, (at least in December) and VERY short trips. I lose a couple tenths each morning just starting the car, the first 5 minute bar shows about 25mpg, and then I reach my destination before 10 minutes have passed. I filled up 2 days ago and my screen shows 33.5 mpg with 3 pips down. Bummer, but I'm getting used to this. As long as my car drives smoothly with no problems, I won't complain. (Well, not too much.)
 

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I really don’t understand the term "real world", there really is no such thing.

All people have different driving habits and travel through different environments.

So I propose a regional rating based on driving habits, environment and road conditions. It may seem to detailed but it will definatly help. For someone who has a heavy foot and drives at +65mph will never see anything close to the EPA Ratings

I live in CA and commute M - F to and from San Jose to San Francisco on highway 101. My average speed is based off traffic flow. Some days heavier than others. On a good day 55 - 60 mph on a bad day 35 - 50 mph. But I consistently get above the average +55 mpg on the MFD just the other day I drove to and from work in heavy traffic and light rain and got and average 63.7 mpg.

Now If I take I-280 from San Jose to San Francisco which is not as flat road as 101 my MFD has shown between 44 and 48 mpg with average speed between 55 - 60 mph.


Ok here is the kicker; you and I both know that the average person doesn’t drive between 50 - 55 mph on a freeway. You will do +65 mph or go keep with the flow of traffic. It is the urge to go with the flow of traffic what kills your gas mileage.


What to get better miles per gallon:

1. Drive like an 80+ year old person would 10 - 15 miles below the posted speed limit and stay in the slow lane.

2. Drive as if you are 18 Wheeler Big Rig leave plenty of space in front of you to coast/glide or very light braking. Try your best to keep your momentum!

3. And last but not least go easy on the accelerator again mimic the acceleration of a Big Rig (slow and steady)
 

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Great, change the mpg statement. My chevy truck always had a problem getting anyways near the stated EPA mpg, but our Prius has no problem getting 50-55mpg! And if really pushed it the Prius will get less and baby it much more mpg.

With hybrid technology, I have never seen this much control of MPG and range of MPG figures. So driving it like a vette will suck gas ... these people bitch to EPA and now a re-do of the EPA milage statement.

I personally can drive in 20-30 degree weather 60mph on cruise and get 50 mpg- everyday, rain, snow or shine. But the EPA should just state that going 70-80 mph non-stop down the highway screws the mpg to all autos especailly hybrids and 'please don't bitch if you do drive 70+mph'!

CC
 

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I agree the new test method are showing unrealistic results, but consider that the original test method was nowhere near realistic. 48MPH on highway with no climate control? For city they should use 40MPH with more stops and climate control.

Wouldn't it be neat if we could have a setting that controlled the acceleration and deceleration rate? (with overrides of course). In model trains, many DC throttles have a momentum setting to more closely simulate real world train behavior. with DCC, which is digital, most decoders in the trains can have their throttle and momentum behavior programmed, and with some throttles, you can do it there.
 

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I have a 2005 with 11000 miles an live in Denveer Co. I experience all kind of driving conditions on city streets and highways. I'm an agressive driver to a point and I strill average 40 to 45 mpg. The computer update does not seem to have had any effect. :D
 

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When I got my '02, I drove it to get the best mileage possible and hit the EPA sticker exactly. I got bored after a couple of weeks, and tried just the opposite, and ended up with about 40 overall. Now I just drive it.

Hybrids are getting a bad rep because it's not what US car companies have invested in. Money talks, even when math doesn't agree.

Where's my biodiesel hybrid?
 
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