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Old 07-11-2008, 03:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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PLX Kiwi is Scangaugeís Big Brother



The Scangauge II (and Scangauge before it) has long been a necessary part of practicing EcoDriving effectively. Itís a neat device because it gives you instant feedback, which not only allows you to improve your driving, but also helps you implement various hypermiling tips most effectively. However, Scangauge wonít have a total market share for much longer, as PLX Devices has released a new, and intriguing device called the Kiwi.

Like the Scangauge, the PLX Kiwi takes data from your carís OBDII diagnostics port. This means that the device is plug and play, making it accessible to most drivers, but will only work on 1996+ vehicles. All older cars (like mine) are out of luck. The Kiwi uses the data is collects to not only show you what fuel economy youíre getting, but also to instruct you on how to get a few more MPGs. This is the part thatís really interesting, and the reason the device costs a steep $299.

PLXís cute video can say more about how it works than I can, so check it out:

The website claims that the average driver can save quite a bit of fuel. In my experience, this is definitely true, though I donít know if the Kiwi is really necessary to do it. Most people can realize these improvements without any instrumentation, though those of you looking for more profound savings will probably need instrumentation.

I canít say yet whether it works or whether I would recommend it, but if youíre motivated I think the purchase price could be recouped in gas savings, especially with gas looking to stay up above $4/gallon. You can bet PLX will be receiving an email from ecomodder as we look to test this thing out with both experienced EcoDrivers and complete newbs.

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Old 07-11-2008, 03:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Looks like the first commercial competitor to the SG.
Project MPGiata! Mods for getting 50+ MPG from a 1990 Miata
Honda mods: Ecomodding my $800 Honda Fit 5-speed beater
Mitsu mods: 70 MPG in my ecomodded, dirt cheap, 3-cylinder Mirage.
Ecodriving test: Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown

has launched a forum for the efficient new Mitsubishi Mirage
www.MetroMPG.com - fuel efficiency info for Geo Metro owners
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Old 07-11-2008, 03:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Faaaaaancy. But it looks like it would just be too fisher price for people like us who KNOW how to get better mpg, and can just go by the "raw" data that the SG provides.
'05 Outback XT, 19 mpg

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Old 07-11-2008, 03:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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SVOboy -

Looks like the iScanGauge. If I was willing to go up to $300, then I would start thinking about an A'PEXi fuel controller or equivalent.

I am curious to know if it uses the 02 sensor and/or the short and long term fuel trim. If yes, then it might be more accurate than the SG.


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Last edited by cfg83; 07-11-2008 at 04:26 PM..
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Old 07-11-2008, 03:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Kinda looks like an iPhone to me, same price anyway Hmm, does apple have a development kit for the iPhone?
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Old 07-11-2008, 04:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Does look nice but it also looks more distracting for a driver unaccustomed to it.

My 5 pillars of fuel efficiency:
  • driving style
  • aerodynamics
  • tires
  • weight reduction
  • engine maintenance
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Old 07-11-2008, 04:13 PM   #7 (permalink)
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It does have the "ifactor" to it. Which would make it a hit for the masses if its marketed well. Color screen, automated lessons, big honking steal me factor, a scoring system, graphical data output, it is built for the general public.
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Old 07-11-2008, 04:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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UPDATE: I talked to PLX and they'll be sending us a device to test in the wild. Don't know when it'll come, might be a few weeks, but that's exciting.
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Old 07-12-2008, 08:01 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Kiwi's are people from New Zealand like myself. We are named after our national bird the 'Kiwi'.
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Old 07-12-2008, 09:44 PM   #10 (permalink)
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looks nice but i'd like to see some testing in the real world, not by the own company. I've been wanting to buy a SCII but if this is better with more capability then maybe i should hold out for one of these "kiwi"s
Edit: i don't know now that i've looked at it a bit more. I does look too much like a game. I like the fact that the SC looks more like a "tool" and isn't cartoony

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