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Old 04-29-2010, 07:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
See ya at the next light!
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 67

Slowest. Altima. Ever. - '05 Nissan Altima SE
90 day: 45.91 mpg (US)
Thanks: 2
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Altima SE V6--best tank: over 40 mpg!

34 MPG in a sedan isn't all that much, but it's an improvement of 36% over my previous combined average by changing only the way I drive.

Recently my job took away the free company car and I haven't had a raise in three years. I could keep the car and pay for it, but I calculated that it would be cheaper to drive my own car even at my average of 22-25 MPG combined. BTW, the company car is a GMC Envoy that averages 15 MPG, but it was free so I used it.

In addition to paying for my all my own gas now, my car needs new tires and brakes very soon. I need to save money. So after filling up the last tank I decided to really push it. On the drive home I turned off the engine as I approached red lights and left it off all the way down long hills. I accelerated lightly, and keep the speed to a max of 45 mph. When I got home the mileage computer indicated 43 MPG.

I've been using the same techniques on my drive to and from work and I've managed to maintain 34 MPG on an 11 mile city commute with 20 traffic lights each way. To minimize stops and take full advantage of traffic patterns, I drive different routes to and from work. Luckally, I never have to drive during rush hour. I still need to fill up and calcuate the actual MPG, but I've found the mileage computer to be very accurate. Usually it under-estimtes if anything.

To summarize:
2005 Nissan Altima SE
3.5L V6
190.6 miles
34.1 MPG (so far)
6 hours, 18 minutes
Average speed: 30mph (Includes time stopped at lights)

I still need to: Add pressure to the tires, clean out the trunk, change the oil.
In the coming weeks the temperature will get unbearable without A/C, and I think hypermiling this car will get tougher.


Last edited by VegasDude; 06-29-2010 at 04:24 AM..
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Old 04-29-2010, 11:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
Pishtaco
 
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Bay Area, California
Posts: 1,485

Mean Green Toaster Machine - '06 Scion xB
Team Toyota
90 day: 48.92 mpg (US)
Thanks: 56
Thanked 285 Times in 181 Posts
Wow! Very impressive, VegasDude. I considered the Altima 3.5 when I bought my SE-R. I presume yours has the MT, if you're EOCing with it. You're doing great.
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Darrell

Boycotting Exxon since 1989, BP since 2010
Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac? George Carlin
Mean Green Toaster Machine
49.5 mpg avg over 53,000 miles. 176% of '08 EPA
Best flat drive 94.5 mpg for 10.1 mi
Longest tank 1033 km (642 mi) on 10.56 gal = 60.8 mpg
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Old 04-30-2010, 02:30 AM   #3 (permalink)
See ya at the next light!
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 67

Slowest. Altima. Ever. - '05 Nissan Altima SE
90 day: 45.91 mpg (US)
Thanks: 2
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Yep, a 5 speed. Something I actually sought out when I looked for an Altima. 2.5 years after buying it I'm actually starting to miss my '97 civic; also a 5 speed. I never tried hypermiling it, but I did get 40 mpg without trying.

The 3.5 is a great engine. Amazing power for a grocery getter, but being front wheel drive, it's tough to use all that power effectively: It has some seriously bad toque steer and understeer. If I were to get another Altima it would be a 2.5.
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Old 04-30-2010, 12:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
Pishtaco
 
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Bay Area, California
Posts: 1,485

Mean Green Toaster Machine - '06 Scion xB
Team Toyota
90 day: 48.92 mpg (US)
Thanks: 56
Thanked 285 Times in 181 Posts
When I lived in Tucson, I didn't own an air-conditioned car. I found that a Dairy Queen Mr. Misty would keep the drive tolerable for an hour until I could get to the next DQ. You might try keeping a blender at home and at work, and make a big slush ice drink to sip on your drive while keeping the AC off. It might work, or at least help. If you buy Mr. Mistys to stay cool, the AC will be cheaper .

I'd be happy with 34 mpg in your car. Hope you can keep your average close to that. If you can do better, my hat's off to you!
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Darrell

Boycotting Exxon since 1989, BP since 2010
Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac? George Carlin
Mean Green Toaster Machine
49.5 mpg avg over 53,000 miles. 176% of '08 EPA
Best flat drive 94.5 mpg for 10.1 mi
Longest tank 1033 km (642 mi) on 10.56 gal = 60.8 mpg
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Old 04-30-2010, 02:24 PM   #5 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Missouri
Posts: 65

Serenity - '93 Nissan Sentra SE-R
90 day: 20.55 mpg (US)
Thanks: 1
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Welcome, Altima brother! (I own an old 95 that's been tuned up.)

About the A/C, I know it's unbearable to go without it in some places (I used to live in Texas), but if you can bear it, try turning the A/C off during stop lights and when you're taking off from a dead start. Seems cars use the most fuel to start rolling from a dead stop, and this would be the time where A/C robs you of the much needed power the most. Might help save some gas to have the A/C off when you take off, then turn it back on once at speed?

Welcome to the site!
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Old 05-01-2010, 02:42 AM   #6 (permalink)
See ya at the next light!
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 67

Slowest. Altima. Ever. - '05 Nissan Altima SE
90 day: 45.91 mpg (US)
Thanks: 2
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
The trouble is standing still is when I will need the A/C the most! When I'm moving I can crack the windows enough to get some air as long as the temp stays in the 80s. In July, when it's 110, opening a window is like opening the door to the oven. No amount of fresh air will feel any cooler. I may try some beaded seat covers as well.

During the summer I'll continue to turn the engine off at stops. Hopefully the air coming out the vents will stay cold until I get moving again.

In the meantime I've increased the tire pressure to 40 psi and I have some highway driving to do this weekend. We'll see what happens now and after I change the oil.

Going from 25 MPG to 34 MPG should save me about ~$285/year @ $3/gallon, if I drive 9000 miles/year. Hopefully taking it easy will also pay off in reduced maintainence costs.
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Old 05-04-2010, 07:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
See ya at the next light!
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 67

Slowest. Altima. Ever. - '05 Nissan Altima SE
90 day: 45.91 mpg (US)
Thanks: 2
Thanked 5 Times in 5 Posts
This damn tank is never going to be empty. After I increased the tire pressure and reduced my city driving to about 40 mph my average MPG have increased to an indicated 34.5 MPG. I'm hoping the computer is a little off and I can achieve a calculated 35 MPG. If not I will try for next tank with fresh Mobil-1 0W-30, max tire pressure, and some real gentle driving.

The cops can't really figure out what I'm doing. They always slow down and watch me for awhile. I'm only driving 55 on the freeway which makes me look drunk. And I'm always waiting until the light turns green to turn the engine on.
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Old 05-05-2010, 04:06 AM   #8 (permalink)
Pishtaco
 
SentraSE-R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Bay Area, California
Posts: 1,485

Mean Green Toaster Machine - '06 Scion xB
Team Toyota
90 day: 48.92 mpg (US)
Thanks: 56
Thanked 285 Times in 181 Posts
ROFL! One of the undocumented benefits of hypermiling (POing the gendarmes). If you get 35 mpg, I'm going to wish for a 3.5 engine transplant into my SE-R .
__________________
Darrell

Boycotting Exxon since 1989, BP since 2010
Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac? George Carlin
Mean Green Toaster Machine
49.5 mpg avg over 53,000 miles. 176% of '08 EPA
Best flat drive 94.5 mpg for 10.1 mi
Longest tank 1033 km (642 mi) on 10.56 gal = 60.8 mpg
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Old 05-05-2010, 10:26 AM   #9 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Missouri
Posts: 65

Serenity - '93 Nissan Sentra SE-R
90 day: 20.55 mpg (US)
Thanks: 1
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Haha, you put a 3.5 in that little Spec V and you might get better MPG than you think, being as light as they are (compared to Altimas anyway).

Keep up the good work Vegas! Hope you hit that 35!
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Old 05-06-2010, 08:52 PM   #10 (permalink)
Basjoos Wannabe
 
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 870

The Van - '97 Mercury Villager gs
90 day: 19.8 mpg (US)

Lyle the Kindly Viking - '99 Volvo V70
90 day: 25.82 mpg (US)
Thanks: 174
Thanked 49 Times in 32 Posts
What is the weight of an Altima anyway? EDIT: Your car weighs 43 pounds more than my maxima...I have the 3.0L in my Maxima. A 3.5 in an altima should make for a quick ride!

It's funny, my 98 maxima is actually smaller than your altima, lighter, and has a smaller engine, yet the EPA MPG are still the same. I compared the 05 Altima, 05 Maxima, and 98 Maxima here and it's interesting how much things can change in less than 10 years.

I can imagine it torque steers like crazy, but a 0-60 in 5.9 in a family sedan? wow, that's quick!

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
I think you missed the point I was trying to make, which is that it's not rational to do either speed or fuel economy mods for economic reasons. You do it as a form of recreation, for the fun and for the challenge.

Last edited by ShadeTreeMech; 05-06-2010 at 09:06 PM..
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