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I have had my new car for three weeks now and I'm only getting around 375 miles on a full tank!!!!!!!! I was told there was a beak in period but that mileage is so low! also I bought a 2003 last January, turned it in in dec. and got a 2004, now do you think I'll get both tax brakes on the two cars????????? also I ordered a tideland pearl color, thinking it was green like the color chart: but it's more gray then green!! I was kinda unhappy with the color, everyone that has seen my new car, says I love the gray color??????????? :cry:
 

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tax deduction

talk to a tax advisor, and read
the recapture rules listed for the
Clean Fuel deduction in IRS Pub. 535
"Business Expenses", chapter 12
"Electric and Clean Fueled Vehicles".

Depending on how I read it (I'm
definately not a tax professional),
either you claim your 2003 purchase
and then return it (less than 3 years
of ownership), or since the person
you sold it to isn't changing it to
no longer be a clean fuel vehicle
you can keep the deduction.

I do know that if you purchase two
hybrids in the same year and keep
them, then you can claim the deduction
twice (one for each car). I don't
know about the selling one early.

My reading of the above publication
also suggests that you're not subject
to the recapture rules if the first
vehicle is out of commission due to
an accident.
 

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I'd like to know, is anyone getting decent gas mileage with the 2004 Prius? What range can we realistically expect to get from a tankful of gasoline?

I dont want to hear that it is possible to get 90 MPG when coasting down hill with a good tail wind or anything like that. What I want to know is the actual range you 2004 Prius owners are getting in the real world and under normal driving conditions.
 

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Behmon said:
I'd like to know, is anyone getting decent gas mileage with the 2004 Prius? What range can we realistically expect to get from a tankful of gasoline?

I dont want to hear that it is possible to get 90 MPG when coasting down hill with a good tail wind or anything like that. What I want to know is the actual range you 2004 Prius owners are getting in the real world and under normal driving conditions.
Short answer:
My lifetime milage at about 2400 miles is very close to 44mpg.

Long complex boring answer:
I'll do better. It's been fairly cool to quite cold for much of the time, post break in, I've had my prius in SW Missouri. I've tended to do a lot more 5-10 minute trips than I like and that is hell on milage. It's very difficult to beat 30-35mpg for the first 5 minutes of driving. When the weather has been warmer (50s-60s) and I've been able to do drives more in the 25-45 minute range with mixed hwy. and city driving I'm hitting 50+ mpg without much difficulty at all.

The problem with your question is that everyone lives in a little bit different "world" and "normal" driving conditions can mean very different things to each person.

I strongly believe my mpg will start to stablize around 48mpg with occasional tanks over 50mpg once the weather warms up, even with my record of short trip driving and exceeding the speed limits on hwy drives and such. I base that assumption on the observations of trip mpgs under the described conditons.
--evan
 

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bjm said:
I have had my new car for three weeks now and I'm only getting around 375 miles on a full tank!!!!!!!! I was told there was a beak in period but that mileage is so low! also I bought a 2003 last January, turned it in in dec. and got a 2004, now do you think I'll get both tax brakes on the two cars????????? also I ordered a tideland pearl color, thinking it was green like the color chart: but it's more gray then green!! I was kinda unhappy with the color, everyone that has seen my new car, says I love the gray color??????????? :cry:
By December there was a plethora of information on this forum and esp. on the Yahoo forum about both of these issues. Even a few days of careful research and observation would have given you access to photos complete with Macbeth color charts upon which you could have reliablely judged the tru color of the car.

You say you're only getting 375 miles on a full tank, but what does that mean? When are you filling up? There have been issues with the "Add Fuel"/flashing bar coming on quite early. The most I've gotten in my tank with a flashing bar is about 8.8 gallons--that means there should be another 4 gallons in the tank. At even 40 mpg you ought to safely be able to go another 80-100 miles without risking running out of gas. There's a rumor that Toyota is going to issue a 'fix' for the fuel gauge issue--we'll see. In the mean time assume you have a 10 gallon tank and drive until you've gone 10X the mpg displayed on the computer.

Also, what have you done to achieve the best mpg? Tire pressures checked (most of us run at 44/42 or 42/40)? Oil level checked? It should NOT be even a tiny bit above the full mark. Alignment checked? Reportedly another mpg stealer. What kind of tempertures have you been driving in...cold weather is another MPG killer. What driving conditions, what speeds? Finally, it is likely you won't ever see the EPA numbers--that's disappointing to me and you, but the reality is that the EPA test create nearly ideal circumstances for the Prius--warmed up engine, perfect distances and speeds that are just not that realistic for most of us. See my post above for some real world numbers. Others are seeing better, others worse than mine.
--evan
 

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Behmon said:
I'd like to know, is anyone getting decent gas mileage with the 2004 Prius? What range can we realistically expect to get from a tankful of gasoline?

I dont want to hear that it is possible to get 90 MPG when coasting down hill with a good tail wind or anything like that. What I want to know is the actual range you 2004 Prius owners are getting in the real world and under normal driving conditions.
Depends on what you mean by "decent." I don't baby the car, don't wait for tailwinds, and drive under normal conditions in the real world every day. I do try to stay below 70 MPH on freeways and do try to use the technique of accelerating to speed rather quickly, then letting the HSD work it's magic to maintain that pace. I'm approaching 2k miles (average trip length 15-20 miles) and my mileage is leveling off at 43+ mpg.
Drive happy,
Moo :)
 

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BJM, I like your Prius color :D When the sun shines on it, more green comes out. I like my silver one too.

Regarding gas mileage: The owner's manual states that in cold weather, the tank bladder can shrink up about 1 1/2 gallons. So you should consider your tank to be between 10 - 10.4 gallons at most in the winter. In the summer, we should be able to get closer to the 11.9 gallon limit. Remember that the bladder helps the environment due to zero evaporative emissions (not to be confused with tail pipe partial zero rated emmisions).

I've also heard a rumor that I have not verified yet, that Toyota is working on a fuel gauge fix, because it just isn't very accurate. You generally shouldn't let your tank get close to empty before refilling. Yes, I've experimeted with the one blinking bar as well. :shock:

Some have suggested to go by mileage and time of year instead of relying competely on the gas gauge. That means roughly 400 miles in the summer and 350 miles in the winter. Your mileage may vary depending on your driving conditions.

I personally like to fill up by 300 miles. At 350 miles I have one blinking bar and I'm assuming I have a little over two gallons left at that point. The most I've been able to put into the tank so far is 8.2 and that's fine with me (for winter time), which means I should pull into a gas station within 40 miles at the latest. :!:

Here in Oregon, we are using winter gas that cuts down on MPG a bit as well.

Here's an attachment from another email of mine, regarding the capabilities of Prius MPG. I should also mention, that my Prius is averaging 43 MPG per tank, based on my driving conditions:

This was a simple amateur test to give me an idea how the Prius performs with the kind of driving I do in the Portland, Oregon Metro area.
temperature: 45 degrees.
rainy as usual for this time of year.
Winter gasoline mix in effect.
Tire pressure: 42/40.
Prius stored inside a garage at night.
350 miles on the odometer when this test began (not completely broken in yet).

Test 1: Cold start and drive to work (5 days a week).
41.6 MPG Average; distance to work: 5 miles
Depending on traffic, it usually takes about fifteen minutes to get to work. The Prius has just warmed up when I turn it off at work. I know that the Prius is tuned to expend energy to heat up the catalytic converter as soon as possible so the exhaust system is working according to AT-PZEV specs. Having the coolant automatically pumped to a thermos (whenever turning the vehicle off) to keep it warm for up to three days improves efficiency a great deal as well. I would not be surprised to see the MPG dip into the 30s on some mornings this winter. But thats still a lot better than my previous sedan could ever do.

Test 2: City Driving
60.9 MPG Average; 10 mile test
With the car already warmed up, I drove in the city with lots of stop and go from 0 up to 40 mph. This is where the Prius really shines! I can cruise in all electric mode up to 41 mph. I accelerated from a stop like a normal car. When I got to cruising speed, I simply feather footed the gas pedal, lightly re-applying gentle pressure on the pedal. This caused the Prius to easily cruise in stealth mode (all electric mode). Since city traffic requires lots of coasting and breaking as well, the battery can easily stay charged. I drove on fairly flat roads and once on a road which had a number of small hills. If the car hadnt performed regenerative breaking and/or coasting for awhile on a longer section of the road, the gas engine would come on to help recharge the battery. Letting the computer perform its balancing act while just driving normally is all you really need to do. Well, the feather footing is kind of cool though.

Test 3: Country Road Driving between 45 and 55 mph
47.2 MPG Average; 12 mile test
The country road I was on had a number of small hills. The range of speeds was due to traffic and the road conditions. After 42 mph, the gas engine is active full time, although the electric motor comes on to assist very briefly at times.

Test 4: Mixed Driving (typical city and country driving for me)
51.5 MPG Average; 10 mile test
After the country road test, I re-entered the city and drove in the city for another 10 miles. Once again, the stealth mode raised the mpg significantly.

Test 5: Freeway Driving between 55 and 65 mph
37.5 MPG Average; traveling up hill on the freeway at 60 mph.
52.5 MPG Average: Traveling down hill on the same freeway section as above at 60 mph. Note: the average of the up hill and down numbers comes out to 45 MPG.
44.1 MPG Average: 22 Miles of fairly flat freeway (small hills in a couple places).

Test 6: Freeway Driving between 70 and 75 mph
41.8 MPG Average: 12 mile test.
 
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