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tracking fuel economy

April 13, 2007

Continuing with the fuel efficiency theme for a bit, I felt unsatisfied with my fuel economy estimates for my vehicle (a 2003 Hyundai Elantra GT 5 speed). Thankfully, I’ve kept a fuel log for the past five years, logging the odometer, trip, and amount of fuel at each filling. Instead of guessing at the approximate average fuel economy I’ve been getting, today I finally decided to calculate it.

Before I divulge my Elantra’s numbers, I’ll share the numbers from the vehicle we had previous to the Elantra: a Nissan Pathfinder LE. Yes, a huge, heavy, thirsty automatic transmission SUV. (I’m so ashamed.) It was a good vehicle to us, but boy, was it thirsty. According to my log, during the 53 000 km that we drove it for (second-hand) it consumed nearly 6700 L of fuel, for a lifetime average of 12.58L/100km. Yeesh! You can see why we opted for something thriftier. We replaced it with the Elantra. So far, over the 89 000 km we’ve driven it, our Hyundai has consumed 7200 L of fuel, for a lifetime average of 8.09L/100km. MUCH better.

Recalculating the last two tankfulls, during which I’ve been using my modified-for-optimal-fuel-economy driving style, I’ve returned 6.6L/100km – quite the improvement! That could have been even better, but some bad snowy weather and plenty of headwinds over the past week precluded it. I’m aiming to get that closer to 6.0 as much as possible.

For those of you that would also like to track your fuel economy, but don’t want to bother with all the math, there are two sites that do it all for you. Both GasSavers.org and the German (available in English) SpiritMonitor.de allow you to input your distance and fuel to keep track of your fuel economy, costs, and compare your results with others. GasSavers additionally provides articles on fuel-saving techniques and modifications.

Me, I’m going to wait until I replace the Elantra with something more efficient. The Office of Energy Efficiency’s Fuel Consumption Ratings will be helping me select my next vehicle. Here’s hoping for under 4.0L/100km!

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. April 13, 2007 2:44 pm

    The world’s fastest street-legal car in production, the iBugatti Veyron (owned by VW) is even thirstier. At max throttle, it uses more than 125 L/100 km (thereby giving you roughly 12.5mins of driving time between tankfuls). City driving is a mere 40.4 L/100 km.

    Kind of blows your mind.

  2. April 13, 2007 2:46 pm

    erm, don’t know how that ‘i’ got in there, but it’s a Bugatti, not an iBugatti (unless it comes in Bondi Blue), and it’s *made* by VW, not owned by.

    nap time!

  3. April 13, 2007 4:33 pm

    It’s MADE by Bugatti, which is OWNED by VW. Yes, you get to pay dearly for driving the Veyron – up front (as it’s $1.6M) and every time you fill up on premium.

    Some family members recently got a Kia Sedona minivan, and thus far it’s returned only 17.3L/100km for them. That’s pretty abysmal too.

    A nap sounds good.

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