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-   -   '03 Tacoma Prerunner (

mobilerik 12-08-2008 01:36 PM

'03 Tacoma Prerunner - Aerodynamix
Ok, so here's a preview of last night's mods:

Current Aero-Mod Inventory:
  • Half-Tonneau Cover
  • Belly Screen
  • Smooth Wheel Covers
  • Rear Wheel Skirts
  • Top and Bottom Grille Blocks

Best Numbers: I calculated my actual best commute, scaling my uncalibrated ScanGauge numbers, at about 29mpg, based on my very consistent and rising commute mpgs from last week. The actual fillup was 27.7mpg. EPA is 18.

Next Adventures: I removed last week's roof vortex generators (DIY AirTab type) temporarily. And forgot to put them back on. I also meant to fold back the passenger-side mirror this morning. For my next mod, I'm thinking to use my remaining strip of coroplast to make a temporary mini-Kammback-spoiler for the roof, and I'll cut VGs into that. I'll also be making dams for the front wheel wells - since the Prerunner comes lifted, there's a lot of space above the front wheels.

I'll post more pix as I go along. As for science... sorry, for now "I want my mpgs", and if I nerd out too much, I'll never finish my mods. But eventually I'd love to do some coastdowns.

For this week, please join me in cheering on my wheel mods. If can I relearn to drive with my way-off ScanGauge recalibration (ugh!), I oughta be able to fill up at 30mpg this week.

Other data for those interested:
2003 Tacoma Prerunner
Double Cab, Short Bed
2.7L 3RZ-FE 4-cylinder automatic

Suggestions needed:
I'll need clever and easy ideas for accessing the tire valves. I'll explain more when I post pix of the wheel covers, which are of the DIY pizza pan variety, secured for now with zip-ties. I'm thinking I may buy valve extenders so they can be permanently accessible. The alternative, of course, seems to be to cut a sizable hole in each of the covers.

For more... please see my Trip Log.

FastPlastic 12-08-2008 02:06 PM

Look like your off to a great start:thumbup: Keep up the good work!

Sulfuric 12-08-2008 04:59 PM

That's one of the best looking cars that have any mods to them.
You get to drive around a cool looking pickup and still get almost 30mpg, that's awesome.

My car gets 10mpg over your car but my mods don't look as pro as yours do(yet :D )

mobilerik 12-08-2008 05:49 PM


That's one of the best looking cars that have any mods to them.
Wow, quite a compliment! Maybe I'll keep to my low-resolution cellphone pix for all my mods. :)

It does look fairly cool from a distance, though... but I still haven't gotten used to smooth wheels. There's something so "un-truck-like" about that to me. And racing wheels on a lifted truck that's going 45 in the slow lane... Just who do I think I am anyway??

The demand is growing in my mind for that "Research Vehicle" placard.

rav 12-08-2008 07:43 PM

Did the air tabs help? Nice mods so far, All the best!!

MetroMPG 12-08-2008 08:02 PM

I'm betting the air tabs made no discernable difference.

Great mods!

I'd definitely work on that coroplast taper to the roof & side of the cab. You can't go wrong with a 10 degree taper (sides & top) if you just want to slap something together.

DifferentPointofView 12-08-2008 08:40 PM

its so good looking cause everything matches, and is smooth. the wheel caps match the cars paint while delivering a 2 tone look with the black on the wheels, and the rear wheel cover is black like the fender flares, and smoothly goes from front to back of fender, so it looks as though its supposed to be there. Nice work. :thumbup:

mobilerik 12-08-2008 10:24 PM

Holy crap!!!
My SG recalibration was so far off, I felt I had to fill up to get some sense of normalcy back in my monitoring system. Check out my first post-wheel-mod gas receipt:

And here I thought I had a crappy day! Since the SG was so far off -- about 8mpg too low -- I couldn't hit any of my marks, and gave way more gas than I should have, just to keep my speed up. It was terribly confusing. About halfway through the return trip, I figured out that I need to aim about 5-6mpg lower than usual, based on my previous marks, and just as I got it into my head that I was going to beat 30, I ran into an uphill pile-up! I was totally baffled when the gas pump shut off when it did, and it took me quite a few startled seconds to recognize the easy "divide by 2.0 gal" calculation.

So can we say, "Way to go, wheel mods!!" :thumbup:

Of course, such a short tank is bound to have a large error. So we'll see how the rest of the week goes. Maybe I can get another mod in tonight. ;)

Sulfuric 12-08-2008 10:32 PM

33 mpg is simply amazing in pretty much any pickup, high five.
If you could pick a number in mpg, how much do you think you scangauge helps?

I don't have an SG, I think my car is too old, and I still manage to pull about 50% over EPA.
I give myself a pat on the back every fillup.

taco 12-08-2008 11:24 PM

flat landers!!!!!

very nice 3rz ftw!

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