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California98Civic 07-15-2011 01:38 AM

Hypermiled an SUV
Hypermiling an unmodified auto-trans SUV is a pain! I respect those of you who can do it. My wife drives a 2010 Subaru Forester, a mid/small SUV. EPA rates it 27 hwy and 20 city, 22 combined. I just drove it nearly 900 miles on a family camping trip--stuffed with camping gear. The trip average was 31.2mpg on the stock gauge, which I calculated overstated by about 1mpg. So I scored a 30.2mpg average on mostly highway but often mountainous (5000ft) terrain and serious LA and Santa Cruz traffic jams. But I had to work hard! I had a 130 mile long stretch in a strong headwind (then virtually the same wind at my tail coming home). Neutral was my friend. So were the very hot temps. I staggered the A/C my family wife and daughter love. Kept everyone cozy. And the trucks I slip-streamed at a 4 or 5 car-length distance to get 36mpg and 40.5mpg for two 30-mile stretches certainly helped.

Props to those driving these things and actually trying for FE! Yikes I don't want to run that experiment again.

camopaint0707 07-15-2011 02:06 AM

love to see pics of this

Superdutytd 07-15-2011 02:32 AM

Sucks trying to HM something that seriously just seems to be trying to work against you doesn't it?

CigaR007 07-15-2011 02:38 AM

Considering the circumstances, you did quite well ! :thumbup:

Piwoslaw 07-15-2011 06:13 AM

I second that. Many normal drivers don't get 30mpg in a regular car, so you should be proud of yourself. We sure are:thumbup:

California98Civic 07-15-2011 10:07 AM


Originally Posted by Superdutytd (Post 250400)
Sucks trying to HM something that seriously just seems to be trying to work against you doesn't it?


I'll post photos as soon as I can find out where my camera went in all this camping stuff. Gotta go to work today. Driving the Civic. :thumbup:

endurance 07-18-2011 01:17 PM

Subaru's are hard beasts to hypermile. That AWD stuff isn't light and it's always turning with no way to turn it off even when you're on dry pavement. Strong work getting it done.

...but I'm still going to hide this thread from the wife. She really wants a Subaru, but with a 50+ mile per day commute and mid-20s mpg from your average driver I resist it with all my might. Heck, she's barely averaging 27mpg in a Mazda Protege 5. How can a car with that little power possibly get that bad of mileage?

Arragonis 07-18-2011 01:44 PM

Well done, the Forrester is about as square as a cube really, plus the Auto and the AWD and (I'll put it out there but I know many disagree) the flat four being perhaps not the most efficient motor available.

Technique rules, and mine is useless :D

California98Civic 07-18-2011 09:09 PM

4 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by Arragonis (Post 250907)
Technique rules

Agreed. And somebody asked for photos back in this thread... I forgot... here are a couple of trucks I slip streamed and of my peak FE on a shortish Grapevine/LA leg. Oh, and some oil-pumping rigs in the region of Cali where James Dean's last movie, "Giant," was filmed. I figured oil was appropriate.

SentraSE-R 07-18-2011 09:39 PM

Kudos for beating EPA by such a sizable %. I've been appalled by FSPs before - notably my '87 Chevy Astro van, which was difficult to coax 22 mpg out of. My daughter's Grand Caravan was similar. Its mpg stayed solidly under 10 mpg within her neighborhood. Even on a long highway trip, 26 mpg was the best I could get out of it.

What does anyone in SoCal need AWD for, anyway?

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