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Old 04-13-2009, 10:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Versa - '08 Nissan Versa SL Hatchback
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Next Car: Honda Fit?

Right now I am driving a 2005 Nissan Frontier, 4x4, lifted, big tires, several hundred pounds of offroad protection, etc, etc... not exactly a great vehicle for FE. With all the mods I made I averaged ~14.5MPG, once I learned of this site and started doing very basic hypermiling techniques I managed to raise my average to ~17-18MPG

I dont offroad anymore, and the truck doesn't have enough interior space. I was thinking I might sell the truck and get a new Honda Fit. I can sell the truck for $15,000, so really the Fit would only cost me a couple grand. I drive about 16,000 miles a year, so I would quickly make up the added cost in fuel savings.

My main question is, Should I go for the Auto or Manual Trans. Conventional wisdom says the Manual will get better FE, but the Auto has better EPA ratings, and I have heard the the transmissions are geared badly for FE. I imagine the manual will still be capable of getting better FE, but I wanted to know what you guys thought.

Thanks!

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Old 04-13-2009, 10:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Good job on the improved milage on that monster!

If I could go back and pick my car out again, I'd have gone for the manual instead of the auto. I might have gone for the Fit, too, if it was available in the US at the time... but that's besides the point.

I say go manual.
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Old 04-13-2009, 10:50 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I don't even need a new car and I spend time on CL just looking to see how many civic VXs are for sale around me. I wouldn't even go for a brand new car like the fit, I'd look for a used civic, corolla, or metro (if you don't mind the whole "death trap" nonsense). Any way you look at it you're going to come out on top if you have $15,000. You could either get a really low-mileage used car like that and still come on top, of buy 3 or 4 older ones. Any of the aforementioned vehicles will run forever - I didn't think twice about buying my civic at 176k or formerly my corolla at 145k. I'm sure there are plenty of other threads outlining the value in a used car. Don't have a fit, get a used car! (badumm chhh)
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Old 04-13-2009, 10:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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If ALL I was concerned about was FE, then yes, a used metro/civic would be best, but I am a car guy. I can't be seen in a metro or beat-up civic! haha. A low-milage used Fit would be one thing, but I aint a metro man.
Also, I like the carrying capacity of the fit. I like how much my truck can carry, and although I don't carry stuff in the bed very often, I still was some space for gear.
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Old 04-13-2009, 11:00 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Also might want to consider a manual Chevrolet Cobalt XFE, I have an '08 ('09 gets 1 mpg better) and lived in Hunt Valley MD (about 65 miles south of you as the bird flies) with this car for about 5 months before moving to NC and without any mods and just basic ecodriving/hypermiling techniques would get between 40 - 43 mpg average (I had a lot of low mpg trips driving from MD to NC and back looking for houses and I can't hypermile when wife is in car, she doens't like it so there are some lower numbers mixed in), highway average at 70 mph is about 39/40, at 65 mph 42/43, and at 50 mph would get over 50 mpg on the flats.

Got mine while gas was still over $3.50 a gal and only paid $14,000 for it and $15,500 out the door with tags and everything so you could walk away with an even trade and get a lot better mpg without having to buy a subcompact.

Have put 19,000 miles on mine so far and no problems so far.
Great rolling resistance tires (0.009) are the same they fit to some model years of the Prius.

You also get 155 hp with the Cobalt when you need to get up and go instead of the 117 hp with the Fit.

Just a thought.
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Old 04-13-2009, 11:07 AM   #6 (permalink)
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If you want carrying capacity, a hatchback would be perfect for you AND FE... it doesn't have to be a geo, but honda hatchbacks are nice looking, no? damn the torpedoes man, get a civic! You can tell all the naysayers you have a bunch of friends on the internet you've never met before that respect you and your car :P

Welcome to ecomodder, btw.
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Old 04-13-2009, 11:27 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderboy View Post
.......You can tell all the naysayers you have a bunch of friends on the internet you've never met before that respect you and your car :P

I am here sitting in class (teaching) and when I read that I literally laughed out loud. The students think I am weird. lol
I am (was) very active on clubfrontier.org and my wife often thinks it strange that I consider people I have never met my friends!
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Old 04-13-2009, 11:40 AM   #8 (permalink)
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stevet47 -

THE FIT IS (a very) GO(od choice)!!!

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Old 04-13-2009, 01:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Take a manual Fit for a test ride, run it in top gear at about 1800 rpm. How fast does it go? Are you willing to drive it at that speed quite a bit?

Also, get on the highway, how many rpm does it run at 70mph, 60 mph, 50 mph, 40 mph?

Now compare to the automatic version.

Generally lower rpm at speed is going to be better for hypermiling.
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Old 04-13-2009, 09:51 PM   #10 (permalink)
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If you can keep the revs down, the manual will be the clear MPG winner. If you are driving on the freeway, that means driving slower. If you do long freeway commutes, that time can add up.

People are still definitely pulling good numbers out of AT Fits, but the MT will allow you to actually excercise hypermiling techniques to the fullest.

-soD

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