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View Poll Results: What is the top ten? (I will put cars in the poll as the are posted)
car one 6 33.33%
car two 3 16.67%
car three 2 11.11%
car four 0 0%
car five 2 11.11%
car six 2 11.11%
car seven 3 16.67%
car eight 3 16.67%
car nine 2 11.11%
car ten 2 11.11%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 18. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-08-2014, 07:07 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The best ecomoding cars.

Hi guys and gals!
I was looking for an excelent car to start ecomoding and I had a hard time finding any posts that had a good list of not only fuel efficient cars, but cars that are easy to modify.
What is your top pick for a ecomoding car? If you had to pick any car from a lot, what would it be?
The ten most popular suggestions will go into a poll.
I hope this thread works!
Ok so because I can't edit the poll....(newbie)
I will post the cars down here and you can vote on them in the poll.
Car one = Honda Insight, manual.
Car two = 92-95 Honda civic VX.
Car three = 96-98 Honda HX.
Car four =Saturn SL1 and Saturn SC1
Car five =Festiva
Car six =CRX HF
Car seven =Geo metro 3cyl 5 speed
Car eight =VW TDI
Car nine =Matrix
Car ten =1.0 ecoboost fiesta
I hate that I don't have room, but I want to include the Chevy Sonic.
Thanks again!

Last edited by TheManVan; 08-09-2014 at 08:40 PM.. Reason: Car update
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Old 08-08-2014, 07:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Homer - '02 Pontiac Sunfire SE
Team Pontiac
90 day: 30.05 mpg (US)
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Honda Insight. Manual trans.

That is the best.
Aiming for 50 MPG from an automatic.
See how I'm doing here, My Build Thread

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Old 08-08-2014, 09:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Volt, gas only - '12 Chevrolet Volt Premium
90 day: 40.81 mpg (US)

Volt, electric only - '12 Chevrolet Volt Premium
90 day: 124.7 mpg (US)

Yukon Denali Hybrid - '12 GMC Yukon Denali Hybrid
90 day: 21.48 mpg (US)
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The one you already own.

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Old 08-08-2014, 10:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: USA
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Winsight - '06 Honda Insight
Gen-1 Insights
90 day: 66.63 mpg (US)
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Just about anything older rated at 30+mpg highway. The older stuff doesn't have as many aerodynamic benefits as cars today, nor will it have lrr tires. You can exploit almost every trick in the book.

You can probably double the mpg of most of these cars highway ratings.
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mcrews (08-08-2014)
Old 08-09-2014, 12:17 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Sub - '84 Chevy Diesel Suburban C10
90 day: 19.5 mpg (US)

camaro - '85 Chevy Camaro Z28

Riot - '03 Kia Rio POS
Team Hyundai
90 day: 30.21 mpg (US)

Bug - '01 VW Beetle GLSturbo
90 day: 26.43 mpg (US)

Sub2500 - '86 GMC Suburban C2500
90 day: 11.95 mpg (US)

Shocker - '11 Nissan Leaf SL
90 day: 124.52 mpg (US)
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Anything turbodiesel.
That way you are already recovering energy from the exhaust heat and you are not fighting isobaric losses 99% of the time like with a gasoline engine.
1984 chevy suburban, custom made 6.5L diesel turbocharged with a Garrett T76 and Holset HE351VE, 22:1 compression 13psi of intercooled boost.
1989 firebird mostly stock. Aside from the 6-speed manual trans, corvette gen 5 front brakes, 1LE drive shaft, 4th Gen disc brake fbody rear end.
2011 leaf SL, white, portable 240v CHAdeMO, trailer hitch, new batt as of 2014.
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Old 08-09-2014, 01:12 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Winsight - '00 Honda Insight
90 day: 56.69 mpg (US)

Miaderp - '95 Mazda Miata
90 day: 28.53 mpg (US)
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Originally Posted by backpacker3 View Post
Honda Insight. Manual trans.

That is the best.
Agreed. But repairs on G1 insights outweigh the fuel saving costs unless your willing to do all your own work. If not, this is my personal opinion.

G1 Honda insight.
92-95 Honda civic VX.
96-98 Honda HX.
Saturn SL1? I think it's the SL1 and the older ones at that, pre 2000.

I will never buy anything else then a VX and a HX. When my HX dies I'm just going to rebuild it, parts are extremely cheap, and readily available. When the parts start to become rare, I will simply upgrade to something newer, a civic maybe. I had considered started hoarding parts in my back yard in a shed so I can get 800k-1.2M miles worth of repairs.

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Old 08-09-2014, 09:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Ron Burgundy (retired) - '01 Honda Insight base
Gen-1 Insights
90 day: 71.2 mpg (US)

High Voltage (retired) - '12 Chevrolet Volt Premier
90 day: 40 mpg (US)

Ruby - '18 Chevrolet Volt LT
Team Volt
90 day: 167.6 mpg (US)
Thanks: 104
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Festiva FTW!

I've put less than a hundred bucks worth of mods on my lowly Festiva, and I average about 60 mpg at this point. Seventy of it was just for the Kammback, because I was too lazy to build my own.

Bought the Black Widow for a thousand bucks over two years ago, new tires were 33 bucks apiece, a new radiator was a hundred bucks, etc. . . . parts are cheap for this old beater, and it hasn't given me any trouble in two years of daily driving!

This brick shaped little toy car is prime for ecomodding, with one of the most fuel efficient 4-cly gas engines ever made hiding beneath the boxy hood. You can usually find yourself a 5-speed EFI for less than 1500 bucks, and then you can coast your way to 75% over EPA averages all day long, my friend!

FYI, they're everywhere, and cheap!


If I only had a dollar for every time I've saved gas . . . wait, I do!

Last edited by cowmeat; 08-09-2014 at 09:56 AM..
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Old 08-09-2014, 12:05 PM   #8 (permalink)
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sc1 - '98 saturn sc1
Team Saturn
90 day: 43.17 mpg (US)

Airplane Bike - '11 home built Carp line Tour

rans - '97 rans tailwind

tractor - '66 International Cub cadet 129

2002 Space Odyssey - '02 Honda Odyssey EX-L
90 day: 28.25 mpg (US)

red bug - '00 VW beetle TDI

big tractor - '66 ford 3400
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First gen Insight 5 speed (if you can get a deal, parts are hard to find)
Civic VX (hard to find one)
CRX HF (if not molested)
Geo metro 3cyl 5 speed (if not rusted out)
Vw TDI (pricey)
Saturn sc1
I would put Prius, but there is not much to ecomod there, except for some aero skirts and pan.
- Tony

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Old 08-09-2014, 02:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I think the 1.0 ecoboost fiesta is the best highway especially if you live at any altitude or where diesel costs 20% more then gas.
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Old 08-09-2014, 03:19 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Chevy Sonic (Aveo in Europe-Asia/Barina in Australia) 1.4 Turbo. Toughly built and very conservatively tuned (from the point of view of durability and quietness) stock engine. Appears to benefit in stock configuration from 93 octane fuel. Performance (and apparently MPG-enhancing) modifications sold by the manufacturer without invalidating warranty. Large community of performance modifiers. MPG appears to benefit from several of these mods. Turbo/manifold integration results in quick engine warmups, potentially improving winter MPG by the standards of small gasoline-only cars. GM global car means there are a lot of them on the road. The smallest of GM's gasoline-powered lineup in the USA that's comfortable for highway cruising; and frankly has better highway manners than its import competition as well, so it's the kind of car that would appeal to someone who'd normally buy something less economical. Turbo power train means more mpg variability than normal based on the skill and thoughtfulness of the driver. Affordable parts and relatively easy to work on.

I rest my case.

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