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Discussion Starter #1
Well I ran a small search, and I'm sure this subject was brought out, but I can't find it.
I have noticed that the Taurus takes a lot of gas, compered to our other car - it's a Toyota LE 2003. It is obvious that the Toyota has a smaller engine... but still.

What would you guys recommend to increase the mile per gallon ratio? What do you think is the best cruising speed, where the car take the least gas relative to speed?

Here are some follow-up questions:

- Is there a big difference if you use a better fuel? (all these super-fuels out there)
- Is there anything that could help increase the performance of the car, which is relatively cheap (I'm a college student with a part time job... boo hoo)?
- When you accelerate suddenly and the car shifts down (think it's called kick-down), how much more gas does it take from the engine?
- Cruise control: never tried it really... what is it good for, except the fact that you don't need to press the gas pedal? And if you break, does the car turns cruise control off immediately? In short, is it worth playing with at all?


More questions coming up, the more you answer the more I have... hehe...
 

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- Is there a big difference if you use a better fuel? (all these super-fuels out there)
You will get better gas milage as a result, but not enough to recoup the additional money

- Is there anything that could help increase the performance of the car, which is relatively cheap (I'm a college student with a part time job... boo hoo)?
search for the mod "removing the restrictor cone" also called an intake silencer (its a free mod)

- When you accelerate suddenly and the car shifts down (think it's called kick-down), how much more gas does it take from the engine?
Depends how far you press the pedal

- Cruise control: never tried it really... what is it good for, except the fact that you don't need to press the gas pedal? And if you break, does the car turns cruise control off immediately? In short, is it worth playing with at all?
This helps avoid speeding tickets, better on your car, HELPS GAS ECONOMY, and make your foot feel better!

It is the most efficent way to drive, it will help you save gas. Use it!

Brad
 

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And coast to a stop. That helps a little bit.

Kick-down? Is there where like you accel and the RPM is up in the 2.5k range and you let go of the gas pedal and the RPMs drop and it upshifts into the next gear? I've never had my car shift down when I let go of the gas after acclerating.
 

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Originally posted by Qwertz9586@Jun 28 2004, 08:47 PM
And coast to a stop. That helps a little bit.

Kick-down? Is there where like you accel and the RPM is up in the 2.5k range and you let go of the gas pedal and the RPMs drop and it upshifts into the next gear? I've never had my car shift down when I let go of the gas after acclerating.
kickdown = downshift
 

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Best gas mileage? You almost can't drive slow enough to get worse mileage. Not on the highway anyway. Go fast enough to get in OD. When the converter locks, you are getting your best mileage. As you go faster from there, mileage gets worse.

Better fuels cost more, but do usually yeild better mileage. Whether it's worth the trade off, one way or the ther is highly debatable. I say it's even a case by case (fuel by fuel) basis, so there is no one answer.

Read some posts to find some cheap mods for your car. There are plenty here. Just don't expect a whole lot of bolt on aftermarket stuff.

When you give it enough gas to "kick down", your trans is shifting to a lower gear. That action in itself, doesn't really use any gas*. Since your engine is turning a higher rpm in the lower gear, it will be using gas at a faster rate. How much faster depends on the load. So, in order to come up with an answer for you, you will have to get a lot more specific.

Cruise control is good. I won't own a car without it now. But it's not going to be missed by someone that never takes a long trip on the highway. I don't see how it's going to get any better gas mileage than me though. care to explain that theory, Brad. In fact, I can see how it could hurt your mileage in hilly areas, if it's steep enough that you downshift on an uphill, and engine brake on the downhills. A conservative driver might let his speed fall a bit as he is climbing the hill, instead of giving it more gas and downshifting. Then the next downhill helps you get your speed back while you keep a nice even throttle position.
 

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I dunno know about the bull but my grand am get the best mailage witht eh mid grade gas 87. A good speed to travel on the highway is when your rpm is right around 2500rpm. I belive that is around 75ish
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Go fast enough to get in OD. When the converter locks, you are getting your best mileage
I have no idea what OD or converter are. Care to explain? Is it something can see / feel so I know?

I might try to experiment with the cruise control, I never did before... how does it work exactly, and if you break, does it shut off? If I'm driving on a flat highway, I guess cruise control could be good.
 

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cruise control works in the way that it maintains you at a constant speed on flat and uphill, on downhills it stops accelerating, but you can coast to a higher speed. When you push on the brake, it DISENGAGES cruise control, but if you push resume, below 45km/h (around 28mph) it wont resume....for some reason I dont know. If pushed above 45km/h (around 30mph just to be safe) it will re-engage and the car will accelerate to the set speed.....you can take corners with it...and it wont shut off. It's great on straight stretches, or areas where you speed but dont want to.....or when a cop is right behind you....I use it most around town(because I rarely drive on the highways) and it works fairly well, on the highways its great, because otherwise i end up being at least 10mph over the speed limit....which will get a cop after me.........but yeah...it also helps your gas mileage because your not constantly accelerating/decelerating....your usually maintaining a constant speed.
 

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Originally posted by Beholder@Jun 29 2004, 12:23 AM
Go fast enough to get in OD. When the converter locks, you are getting your best mileage
I have no idea what OD or converter are. Care to explain? Is it something can see / feel so I know?

I might try to experiment with the cruise control, I never did before... how does it work exactly, and if you break, does it shut off? If I'm driving on a flat highway, I guess cruise control could be good.
OD = overdrive (4th gear)

Converter is short for torque converter. It allows your engine to turn at a different speed than the input shaft of the transmission. When it locks, it doesn't allow the slipping anymore. You usually can't feel it lock. Ford tries to make it lock as smooth as possible.
 

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With my 3.8 Sable I could get good fuel economy out of it by going very easy on the gas pedal on the highway and keeping my speeds to around 70. I let my girlfriend drive (back when I had one :p ) and she burned through gas so fast, she went the same speed as me but she was very twitchy with the gas pedal and kept unlocking the torque converter, so I just said "How bout using cruise!"

Wasn't there a member who set up water injection and got a higher MPG?
 

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Your best milage is probably in the 40-45mph range. After that, any increase in speed means the energy is spent moving the air out of the way and gas milage suffers. A basic rule of thumb is that an increase in speed requires the square in terms of energy. So going at 40 vs 80 means that it requires 4 times as much power. Realistically, you can't do 40 on the highway so basically the slower you drive, the better the gas milage. And of course the more people will be mad at you so stay in the right lane when doing all this.

Of course there's other stuff like keeping your tires at the proper inflation pressure, have a clean air filter that will help a little with the gas milage, but there's no getting away with the gas that a V6 uses vs a 4 cylinder.

Oh, and buy the cheapest 87 octane gas you can find. Most of the gasonline in an area comes from the same place. The only difference between stations is the additive package and they all have to meet the minimum requirements mandated by the EPA so while some brand names may promote their package as being extra special, the no-name place won't hurt your car. Plus the brand name people have to pay for advertising/franchise fees so they have to charge more. The only danger is buying from a small place that doesn't get a lot of business and perhaps there's sediment in their tanks.

Only use a higher grade if your engine knocks on the low octane stuff. The BTU content of all grades of gasoline is the same, the only difference is the ability to resist premature detonation. Premature detonation is knock and it will reduce the power output. Older cars with high mileage tend to build up carbon in the combustion chambers which will cause the engine to heat up more and make it more likely that hot spots in the chamber will cause knock.
 

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Dont make it go higher than 3k rpm in city driving, no WOT, and set the cruise at 65-70mph on the expressway and you should get about the best fuel mileage your car will get and still drive like a normal motorist. When I drove like that in my 00 Duratec I would get an easy 25mpg combined, and that was with heavy 17's, wider tires, and ~115lbs of stereo equipment in the trunk. I once got 28mpg on a roadtrip to Kansas with ~ 500lbs of crap in the car. Cruise control saves gas because it meters it consistently, whereas your foot will make the rpms go up & down a little, which will use more gas in the long run.

And it would take a VERY large hill to make the tranny downshift, and even then its annoying to slow down 15mph just to maintain the same throttle position. And it does let off the gas when going down a hill.
 

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Originally posted by jtkz13@Jun 29 2004, 02:11 AM
Cruise control saves gas because it meters it consistently, whereas your foot will make the rpms go up & down a little, which will use more gas in the long run.
I'm assuming that you mean cc holds the throttle pos more consistantly. I'll agree for flat roads. Depends a lot on who you are though, some people have a steadier foot than others, I'd imagine. And I agree that minimal movement of the throttle will give best mileage (I'm also assuming that's what you are saying).

And it would take a VERY large hill to make the tranny downshift, and even then its annoying to slow down 15mph just to maintain the same throttle position. And it does let off the gas when going down a hill.
The size of the hill that it takes to get you to downshift is going to depend on the car, your speed, and definition of VERY large hill. It doesn't take a big hill at all (by my definition) to make my car downshift to 3rd, if my cruise is set to 40mph.

Even if the CC is not causing a downshift, in hilly terrain the CC is going to vary the throttle position a lot more than the average person would. Especially on rolling hills where you are likely to just leave the throttle in one spot, and not care that you are going 2 miles an hour faster at the bottoms, and 2 miles an hour slow at the tops. CC would have your throttle position all over the place trying to hold to an exact speed.

It's realy annoying to me when CC causes a downshift, 1 second before you reach the crest of a hill. A person would just let his speed fall that 1/2mph, rather than tip the throttle some more.
 

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I use the "Economy Gear " :p the on with the circle around the D :p, sounds stupied but it saves me a ton of gas, and try dumping some of thous gas cleaners in, it worked for me, put a few extra bucks in my pockets that i can waste on something like scratch tickets :p
 

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You think you have bad mileage, try driving a SHO :p

What kind of mileage are you getting? Unless something is wrong with your engine, bad mileage is a direct result of driving style. Best solution for better mileage: Just give it enough gas to shift around 2500. This has always got the best results in my car. And for the highway, just drive 70 with cruise on B)

Driving like this gets me 17/28 in the gas drinking SHO.
 

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While I like using the Cruise Control from time to time, I think it's overrated as a gas saving device, except for less experienced drivers. It's very convenient, though.

I will maintain throttle position or increase it *slightly* when going up a hill, where CC would give a much larger push of the pedal. Just because I'm not using CC, doesn't mean I'll slow down to 15MPH.

When going downhill, I'll back off on the gas and let the car "coast" to some degree, letting the speed creep up some. Otherwise, CC will slow the car, and waste some of that "economy".

OverDrive engages at about 45MPH. Accelerating while in OD can use a lot of gas. I've found that rather than trying that in OD or going to WOT to get the transmission to kick down, I just shift from OD to D. This alone is almost always enough to get up to speed quickly with out a lot of pedal, and then I shift back into OD. I don't do this often though, as I don't think our transmissions are up to it.

Without some extensive testing, I would not assume the 60-70MPH gave better gas milage. Maintaining those speeds would be more economical than constantly slowing and accelerating, but a constant 45-50MPH would more likely give better milage.

eCar is spot on about hills and OD.
 

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Well I have manual transmission cars now, so I dont have to worry about the car picking my gear for me. :D

However, I agree with you eCar, but on the whole I think it that for the vast majority of people CC would yield better mpg than right footing it.
 

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Originally posted by Baby SHO@Jun 28 2004, 08:39 PM
- Is there a big difference if you use a better fuel? (all these super-fuels out there)
You will get better gas milage as a result, but not enough to recoup the additional money
Not true. You will not get better mileage for "better gas" unless you are talking about 10% ethanol and non-10% ethanol. The difference beeing that the stoichiometric vaule of gas is 14.6:1 (which happens to be the chemically correct a/f ratio for heptane, which is basically gasoline), where as the stoichiometric value of 10% ethanol added is 14.2 This means that you would get about 3% less MPG when using fuels such as Sunoco, that have 10% added ethanol, as you woudl have to run richer to make the same power, and this is exatly what the adaptive control in your car will do to achieve a stoichiometric balance of 14.64:1.

If you are referring to say same-band regular vs same-brand premium, then you are wasting you money unless the car is tuned for premium. I know this goes against the poropagated myth but this is accurate.
 

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Originally posted by Beholder@Jun 28 2004, 08:01 PM
Well I ran a small search, and I'm sure this subject was brought out, but I can't find it.
I have noticed that the Taurus takes a lot of gas, compered to our other car - it's a Toyota LE 2003. It is obvious that the Toyota has a smaller engine... but still.

What would you guys recommend to increase the mile per gallon ratio? What do you think is the best cruising speed, where the car take the least gas relative to speed?

Here are some follow-up questions:

- Is there a big difference if you use a better fuel? (all these super-fuels out there)
- Is there anything that could help increase the performance of the car, which is relatively cheap (I'm a college student with a part time job... boo hoo)?
- When you accelerate suddenly and the car shifts down (think it's called kick-down), how much more gas does it take from the engine?
- Cruise control: never tried it really... what is it good for, except the fact that you don't need to press the gas pedal? And if you break, does the car turns cruise control off immediately? In short, is it worth playing with at all?


More questions coming up, the more you answer the more I have... hehe...
You can get a chip with a fuel economy program and/or, get a vaccum gauge and try to cruise at a low RPM, but that the vaccum gauge (for an n/a car) shows just below zero vaccum, to save MPG from less pumping losses (pumping loses of gas/fuelpress vs vaccum, since as you know the FPR (or IPS in returnless style cars with an electrical returnless system) is referenced to boost/vacuum,, and Delta P (or fuel pressure drop across the injector) is the diference between the rail (absolute pressure when referenced to atmosphere) and the upper intake manifold, i.e. theoretically always 40psi Delta P.
 

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Originally posted by eCarâ„¢@Jun 28 2004, 11:05 PM
When the converter locks, you are getting your best mileage. As you go faster from there, mileage gets worse.
I generally agree with this. Som of the older cars had the converter lockin 2nd at PT for better gas milage. This is rearely donw nowadays b/c most customers do not like the feel of this.

Also, it should be noted, as far as kickdowns go, one needs to make sure it is a legitime downshift vs the TC locking...(this second statement is regarding a previous posts, nor ecar's
 
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