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Mpg - Your Experiences

92 posts in this topic

Hi all

I am the owner of a Ford Focus Zetec 1.6 Petrol (2009) in sea grey with 12,000 miles on the clock (pics to appear shortly!)

I have had the car for just over a week and whilst it is a joy to drive I am concerned about the MPG that the vehicle appears to be returning.

The official Ford figures are:

Urban - 32.5mpg

Extra Urban - 51.4mpg

Combined - 42.2mpg

For the first few days the car was being driven around town and returned about 25/26mpg on the computer. On Saturday I filled the car up and reset the trip and mpg computer. I then drove to Bristol and back, a round trip of 240 miles at a steady 75mph and on my return it read 38mpg.

I am in the middle of going a brim to brim calculation, however based on the computer alone I have driven a total of 240 miles and will drive another 170 before I need to refuel.

Therefore this suggests on a full tank of petrol (55 litres, 12.098303 gallons) the car will drive 410 miles. This equates to just under 34mpg.

Bearing in mind I am doing this calculation after a good 'run' and I suspect this will decrease as the remainder of the tank is likely to be around town.

I realise this is based on he computer which is just a guide, however gives a good indication that the mpg is not what it should be.

My driving style is quite defensive and therefore accelerate gently, anticipate traffic and cruise in gear when possible.

Does anyone else have this same issue?

Many thanks

James

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Firstly, I would ignore the claimed MPG figures... there is no way you can replicate them in 'real world' driving. The best way to guage how economical you are being is by working it out for yourself (as you say, the car's trip computer is a good guide but not completely right. My last tank showed around 48 MPG, but when I worked it out myself it was 51). You will then over several tanks of fuel start to see what is average for you, I know mine fluctuate depending on where I've been and how quick I got there ;)

Secondly, 12,000 miles on a 2009 plate? Wow! Barely run in ^_^

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You will not get a true idea on mpg until you have covered more miles and the cars computer gets used to your driving style, about 1000 miles and 1 month should do it, it is very unlikely that you will ever achieve the figures quoted by Ford but I would guess that it will settle down to about 37mpg which is what I get on supermarket petrol from my 1.8, you may get slightly more on Shell V Power which is what Ford my use in their calculations, but you won't save any cash as the V Power petrol is more expensive.

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Hiya James,

The MPG subject has been done to death [many times] instead of repeating it over and over and over, best if I just link to another thread which it self contains links to threads of a similar nature

http://www.fordownersclub.com/forums/topic/14318-fuel-consumption-problem/page__hl__+miles%20+per%20+gallon%20+what%20+are%20+you%20+getting#entry91203

Myself I'm a bit of a spreadsheet junkie, I just love collating data :rolleyes: Have collated three years worth of fuel data on my current Focus [most of my petrol station visits result in brimming the tank] This current years worth of data is due for conclusion 21st October 2012.

Currently the rolling average for this year [last brimmed 7th September] is 34.03 mpg

I've had dashboard comp readings of 19mpg around town, and once even a 57.30mpg reading on an 11 mile stretch A road cruising at circa 50 mpg. Trips from Yorkshire to Cornwall and back circa 900 mile doing 75mph on the motorways returned 36.32mpg.

Needless to say it's all down to driving conditions, driving style and speeds maintained. Forget the official figures they are not real world figures.

My tips are smooth and lite use of the accelerator , and attempt to drive in a manner that means you only touch the brake pedal when you want the car to come to a complete stop.

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why do people believe these figures as if they are gospel 1st rule about car manufacturers they lie

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You will not get a true idea on mpg until you have covered more miles and the cars computer gets used to your driving style, about 1000 miles and 1 month should do it, it is very unlikely that you will ever achieve the figures quoted by Ford but I would guess that it will settle down to about 37mpg

I second this. For example when I first bought my (diesel) Focus and brimmed the fuel tank, the trip computer said I had a range of 400 miles. Perhaps the previous owner was very heavy-footed.

Now it says I have a range of 550 miles, which is a very realistic figure for my driving - but it took about a month for the TC to recalibrate itself.

No idea how the TC calculates, perhaps it uses data from the last 10 tankfulls so that it has a realistic trend to base the calculations on?

As you can see, using an 'estimated range' to calculate your MPG is not accurate, especially if this is your first tank of fuel since buying the car.

But that's range, and you were asking about MPG

First, can you be certain that the trip computer is acurate? Only filling the tank every time and doing a manual calculation will give your true MPG. If you have a smartphone there are plenty of free apps to do this for you.

Secondly, the 'official' figures are done under laboratory conditions. This is to remove all other variables and give a consistent method from one car to the next, from one manufacturer to the next. Whatever assumptions have been built into these tests (traffic etc) may be completely unrealistic and could never be matched in the real world.

But they are the tests that Ford (and all car makers) must use, by law.

Maybe the test assumes that an 'urban' journey will spend 7% of the time waiting at traffic light, but in reality you spend 15% of your time waiting.

Maybe the test assumes that the outside temperature is 22 degrees but in reality it's 15 degrees.

Maybe the test assumes the roads are flat, but your route is very hilly.

Maybe the test assumes there are no other passengers on board, but you always have someone else in the car with you.

Maybe the test are done indoors on a rolling road, which is fatally flawed!

Whatever the reason, you will always struggle to meet the 'official' figures.

What I prefer to do is record my own fuel economy, and set a goal (currently 50mpg in my 1.8 diesel). If I achieve that I'm happy, but I have also done 60mpg - 20% better - on long motorway journeys.

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why do people believe these figures as if they are gospel 1st rule about car manufacturers they lie

Car makers must conduct their MPG calculations according to the rules laid down by the EU, to ensure consistency.

No car maker is 'lying', however it would be more correct to say that the official tests do not accurately imitate real world driving - but that is not the car makers fault.

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Thanks for all your replies.

From doing a bit of reading it would suggest that the Focus is one of the poorer cars when matching it against the figures produced by the manufacturer.

As the car is only 12,000 miles I guess that the air filter or spark plugs couldn't be the culprit.

I'll keep a log of manual calculations for the next 1,000 miles and see how it works out.

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If you have a smartphone (Apple or Android) or even an iPod Touch, I strongly recommend downloading an app.

I use RoadTrip Lite (free) on my iPhone, and whenever I fill up I just put in the current mileage, price per litre, and either the number of litres put into the tank or the cost of the fill.

It can cope with a partial fill too, for when your skint and only put a tenner in.

It calculates the MPG of every tank, pence per mile, and does graphs for trends of MPG and fuel price. You can have your results in imperial or metric. Very good for a free app.

There are plenty of others available, for all platforms.

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Like catch, I rely on a spread sheet.

Only had the car a short while but this is to date

Fuel.jpg

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1.6L Ghia with 100ps here. I'm usually looking at between 34 and 38mpg. I sometimes see 40 if I fill my tank and do a long motorway journey right away, but most of the time with mixed driving it's between 34 and 38.

Pretty crappy tbh, but hey, that's life.

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That is pretty low but seems typical from what I've seen on here. Looks like I'll have to live with it!

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Like catch, I rely on a spread sheet.

Only had the car a short while but this is to date

Fuel.jpg

What engine size and fuel type?

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Car makers must conduct their MPG calculations according to the rules laid down by the EU, to ensure consistency.

No car maker is 'lying', however it would be more correct to say that the official tests do not accurately imitate real world driving - but that is not the car makers fault.

Doesn't stop them milking it in the advertising when they get good results!

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GSM - 1.6 Petrol

Have updated profile

Stan

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The roads you drive on and traffic conditions can have a massive influence on fuel economy. When we had the massive downpours last week and the roads were snarled up, I was watching the MPG reading on my trip computer go down and down as I sat in traffic.

Personal driving style is important too - in fact after we discussed the subject Mrs PM now matches my fuel economy when she uses the car, which is fantastic.

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Trip computer average for past 6 months is showing 46.4. When I used to reset the average for each tank during the first 2 months ownership it was approx 42.

That's in a 2.0 TDCi covering approx 15,000 miles over the 8 months since I bought it.

My driving style is rapid progress with plenty of forward anticipation - no Santa pod starts away from the lights but equally little braking/acceleration in the bends. Commute to work is mixed A roads, short motorway / dual carriage way stint and city centre driving - 27 miles each way so engine getting well warmed up for maximum efficiency.

Not done any manual calculations but may start using the iPhone app now though.

Hope that helps.

Max

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GSM - 1.6 Petrol

Stan

Hmm, you're doing a lot better mpg than me and I'm on the 1.6 petrol too! Do a lot of motorway miles?

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1.6 ecoboost 180ps currently only with 1000 miles on engine getting between 35 and 38mpg. Travelling 50 miles a day mixed of short dual roads with roundabouts, 7 mile stretch of 70-75mph dual carriage way and then a roads between 50-60mph.

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im around the same as stan with the 1.6 ti vct engine 36 minimumn and 48 max. average at the moment after 1 month im doing 40mpg

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Interesting to read everyones experiences.

I agree that the official figures are in controlled conditions, however there is quite a difference between 25mpg and 32.5mpg.

I have read that an ECU re-map can give you increased power and torque delivery with increased fuel economy. Does anyone have any experience of this?

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Interesting to read everyones experiences.

I agree that the official figures are in controlled conditions, however there is quite a difference between 25mpg and 32.5mpg.

I have read that an ECU re-map can give you increased power and torque delivery with increased fuel economy. Does anyone have any experience of this?

The gains you get from a non-turbo petrol remap are modest at best, and not really any cheaper to have done. So really there's no point - the economy savings are so small that it'll take you years to earn back the money you spent on getting it chipped.

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Hi 100hp titanium 1.6 petrol, 2009, now on 13000 mls, i get between 31.8 and 32.8 mpg so the dash tells me, my own limited brain power says my car is doing 95miles from twenty quid, is this good??, its better than my old zafira.

Dont notice any difference between supermarket and shell/bp.

All our driving is 60/40 town and dual carrageway.

Wr love our car though.

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Hi 100hp titanium 1.6 petrol, 2009, now on 13000 mls, i get between 31.8 and 32.8 mpg so the dash tells me, my own limited brain power says my car is doing 95miles from twenty quid, is this good??, its better than my old zafira.

Dont notice any difference between supermarket and shell/bp.

All our driving is 60/40 town and dual carrageway.

Wr love our car though.

Depends on your local fuel price, but at £1.40/L and taking an average to 32mpg I'm calculating about bang on 100 miles for £20.

It's a bit close to the low end for the 1.6L Petrol. I'm on the 1.6L Petrol too, mixed motorway and town driving (most of my miles being driven like an old granny, might I add) and I'm getting between 35mpg and 38mpg - and tha'ts a 2006 model with close to 50k miles.

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Apparently the increase in bhp is 10 and torque is about 12. A claim of between 5 and 10% increase in fuel economy. I am skeptical of this claim though!

Andyman - If you're getting 95 miles from 20 quid that's about 14.81 litres assuming you are paying £1.35 per litre. This gives you an approximate mpg of just over 29. It's quite low but seems typical for the petrol Focus.

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