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Old 06-12-2009, 12:58 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Asheville, NC
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AvilleEcho - '00 Toyota Echo 4 dr manual
90 day: 53.53 mpg (US)
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Happy Toy Echo driver

Hi everyone,

I've been doing a lot of reading on this site and am truly grateful for this forum. I've already added almost 20 MPG to my average and I haven't even got a scan gauge yet.

In 2005 I did a lot of research and found the manual Toyota Echo seemed to be as close to hybrid without actually being one. I was thrilled when I found a used one with 75k miles on it for $5000 out the door. Within the first month I got a 48 MPG tank and I wasn't even trying.

Since then, I've slowly seen lower and lower numbers. Part of it is the age of the car but as I've taken really good care of it and now started to hypermile I realize that I may have also gotten a heavier foot over the past few years. Average traffic speeds in my area have also increased as well.

Ecomodders to the rescue! Just got a 59.44 MPG tank, whoohoo!

But as a newbie, having done more reading I realize that I went a little extreme off the bat and pissed off a lot of drivers. A 7 hour highway trip at 45 MPG with hazards the whole way may not have been the wisest initiation. The stress of watching the rear view mirror more than the road in front goes against the laid back stress free picture you've painted for me here at ecomodders.

So I'm looking forward to seeing my hypermiling skills mature based on the wonderful resource of seasoned hypermilers here.

Thanks,
Matthew

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Old 06-12-2009, 01:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Old 06-12-2009, 02:34 AM   #3 (permalink)
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1999 Saturn SW2 - '99 Saturn SW2 Wagon
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matthewc -

Welcome to EM! The Echo is a great MPG machine. The Echo is a great MPG machine. The Echo is ... awww shucks.

I understand the "rear-view-mirror" stress, especially here in LA. Just tonight I got high-beamed by a Range Rover after repeatedly tapping the brakes while approaching a fast-impending traffic jam in my lane. I was actually protecting them by warning them. They just don't get it, . I think my route is partially determined by it's relative calm, i.e. being able to drive slower with less traffic.

CarloSW2
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Old 06-12-2009, 08:28 AM   #4 (permalink)
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CM400E - '81 Honda CM400E
90 day: 51.49 mpg (US)

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90 day: 49.53 mpg (US)

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90 day: 64.33 mpg (US)

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Welcome matthewc. I'll agree with Carlos, the Echo is a great MPG vehicle. A few mods here and there and you'll have your 59 mpg back while being able to keep up with traffic a bit better.
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Old 06-12-2009, 10:17 AM   #5 (permalink)
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AvilleEcho - '00 Toyota Echo 4 dr manual
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Unsafe vs. Safe Hypermiling

Quote:
Originally Posted by cfg83 View Post
I understand the "rear-view-mirror" stress, especially here in LA. Just tonight I got high-beamed by a Range Rover after repeatedly tapping the brakes while approaching a fast-impending traffic jam in my lane. I was actually protecting them by warning them. They just don't get it, . I think my route is partially determined by it's relative calm, i.e. being able to drive slower with less traffic.

CarloSW2
Yeah Carlos, my "rear-view-mirror" stress also shot through the roof because I was so worried about causing accidents and harming others. Whether I pissed them off didn't phase me so much because at first I thought I was ultimately doing a favor for those occasionally getting stuck behind me by saving them gas. I also naively thought since I was obeying the posted "Minimum 45" MPH signs that I was operating within reason.

I finally wised up that driving 30 MPH slower than highway traffic even with hazards flashing really IS inconsiderate and dangerous when I saw someone nearly run someone else off the road trying to avoid me. Some favor. Granted, if they had been paying attention they probably would have responded sooner and safer.

But I realize shifting blame to bad/unalert drivers doesn't prevent accidents. Only driving safely AND considerately does. So I am now using more moderate techniques with this in mind but am still having good results. I also now realize my first hypermiling attempts and methods were what give hypermilers a bad name and that's not what I want at all. It's my wish to promote it not demote it.

As a side note: (Warning to other noobies)
The funny thing is I didn't think I was being too extreme at first because I still stopped at stop lights & signs, didn't tailgate trucks, didn't take corners at dangerous speeds, observed posted minimum speeds, and used my hazard lights to warn traffic I was driving slower. All of these things were repeatedly mentioned in hypermiling etiquette blogs & forums but I didn't find much or any mention of driving excessively slow on the highway as being the MOST dangerous to other drivers. Yes, tailgating trucks is probably the MOST dangerous technique for yourself but it does not seem to endanger other peoples lives and as many lives as excessively slow highway speeds. Consider that when you tailgate a truck you involve mainly yourself and the truck driver compared to the countless number of people passing you that you involve when driving dangerously slow.

Sorry I got so serious on a "Welcome" thread and I know this is preaching to the choir for many, but I hope it helps other noobies like myself not unknowingly make the same mistakes like I did out of my enthusiasm.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daox View Post
A few mods here and there and you'll have your 59 mpg back while being able to keep up with traffic a bit better.
Thanks for the encouragement Daox. Actually my extreme attempt (7 hours of 44 MPH with hazards & EOC) only got me 56 MPG. Speeding up to 55 MPH and using more Engine-on coasting than EOC, implementing pulse & glide, plus raising my psi to 40 did a lot better and pissed less people off.

And I haven't even gotten a scan gauge yet so it looks pretty promising that I'll be hitting 60+ regularly before long without having to disrupt traffic so much.

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