HCH II-Specific Discussions Model Years 2006-2011

How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

  #1  
Old 11-29-2006, 08:40 PM
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Default How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

I've been thinking. If you look at the data for our HCH II's, the median mpg is 47 mpg. Now, if you look at a hypermiler, or say, someone who is just OBSESSED with squeezing EVERY possible mile out of their tank (and you all know who you are), the best hypermiler at the moment for our car is 63.9 mpg. Take a look at this way. Now, this is the extreme case. But in a tank of gas, say 13 gallons (since our tanks hold about 12.9, but lets just say 13). You're getting 830.7 miles per tank. If you're the median, you're getting 611. Thats a difference of 219.7 miles. Great, but at 63.9 mpg, you're only saving about 3.43 gallons per tank, or about 8 or 9 bucks depending on your local gas price (here in So Cal near the Inland Empire it s averaging about 2.38 right now, so about 8.18 dollars per tank. Sounds like a lot yes, but other than people pushing 60+ mpg (lets move down to say, 52 mpg, just above hypermiler status) you're only saving about 65 miles per tank, or about a gallon and a quarter. Thats 2.97.

When you factor in the EFFORT and slower speeds and the constant attention you have to pay to all the gauges and your speed, it doesn't really seem worth it, at least not to me anyway. If you take a more accurate example, the average HCH II driver going at or around the speed limit will get between 40-42 mpg. The moderate hypermiler, not giving it TOO much effort, but still trying, will land somewhere around 47-49 mpg in our cars. The difference is about 7 mpg, or about 1.93 gallons per tank, a total of 3 bucks between them. Personally, if I'm running late somewhere, I'd rather spend the extra 3 bucks (less since that would be the WORST possible case to get that kind of gas mileage, only when you drive that way ALWAYS). So I guess to sum it up, if you're running late somewhere, you're throwing away about 50 cents every time, roughly estimated....doesn't seem worth my time to me. When I'm running late to work, every minute I'm late potentially costs me 33 cents. I'd rather be on time and waste the 75 cents then be 5 minutes late.

I guess when I stopped to think about it, the numbers didn't justify how much effort and attention to driving economically I have to do just to sustain those numbers. I guess I bothered to write this down because I was bored at work too. So I decided to stop trying so hard, and just enjoying my car more. Anyone else give up on getting the BEST possible gas mileage ???? Please share. And for anyone who likes they're 63 mpg, why, other than obvious bragging rights ???? I'm not knocking it at all, good for you, just curious....
 
  #2  
Old 11-29-2006, 10:28 PM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

It's partly the challenge, partly the bragging rights (not on GreenHybrid, since I'm nowhere near the top here... but at the office and with friends!). It's also trying to save some fuel to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. One gallon a week may not be much, but if everyone did it, it would sure add up!

Lastly, it's a "calmer" way to drive, which I'm now enjoying. I drive slower and my blood pressure goes down, too. No more worries about beating out the jerk in the next lane. No more worries about getting a speeding ticket. Actually, with the carpool lane access, I'm actually going faster than I would be in my old SUV. Best of all worlds!!!
 
  #3  
Old 11-29-2006, 11:08 PM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

Jeesh, I pick up my HCH-II in the morning and everyone is all negative around here lately!

 
  #4  
Old 11-30-2006, 02:14 AM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

Last summer I averaged around 66MPG in my HCH 1 CVT. I drive about 38,000 miles/year. I passed my year's single tank goal, as reflected in the photo of my signature below of 1,003 miles and 74.9MPG (Calculated).
So why did I go to such extremes for that tank? While it isn't as grand as an Atlantic crossing certanly was my own personal Lindbergh.
Also using "mild" economy techniques my wife and I raised our Grand Caravan from about 16MPG to around 22.

If I'm not driving for efficiency I don't have a clear consience that I'm not doing my part in reducing our families energy bills.
Our previous car was a 4cyl Dodge Spirit spending us dry at 16-18MPG.

We all enjoy our rides differently. Like many here I formerly enjoyed the thrill of acceleration and speed. All my previous cars was boring within 6-9 months- and getting there became somewhat of a chore. The same old thing.

3 Years of training for efficiency and 82,000 miles later has held back the boredom almost completely. I pollute less and put cash in my pocket.
I can't think of a better way "to go". Personally.

Let's look at my own situation at $2.00/g for 82,000 miles at 64MPG.
I've consumed 1,281 gallons of fuel. That's a total of $2,562
How about GH's average for my own car at 46MPG?
1783 gallons consumed for a cost of $3,566
It's a difference of over $1,000.

Since I hope to keep my cars for 10 years it will have at least 350,000 miles. I don't think calculating at $3.00/g is unreasonable in that case.
5,469 Gallons for $16,407 @ 64MPG
7,609 Gallons for $22,827 @ 46MPG
$6,420 Saved.

Because I've mentioned driving the GC differently, let me calculate that as well based on 10 year life span and 150,000 miles @ $2.50/g and 22 vs 16MPG:
6,818g $17,045
9,376g $23,437
That's almost $6,400 saved by using only basic, simple economy techniques.
I've hypermiled it to over 30MPG but isn't usually the case as it's my wife's primary vehicle. (She has minimal interest in economy)

Not bad for driving a way I've grown to enjoy.
 

Last edited by Hot_Georgia_2004; 11-30-2006 at 02:29 AM. Reason: Added GC calculations
  #5  
Old 11-30-2006, 03:30 AM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

My savings are based on the car i gave up to get the hybrid.
I sold an integra type R. I was getting about 21 MPG and it required premium.

I keep a detailed spreadsheet to determine exactly how much I am saving in real dollars per tank. Right now my average is at just over $28.00 per tank.

at 3-4 tanks per month that is nearly 100 per month in gas savings. Now my payment is higher now, but i perceive that as a shift in expense from oil companies to a car company. To make the issue seems even more noble I like to think that my purchase of a hybrid now will help encourage the development of even better technology.

additionally my insurance went from 1100 per year to 500 per year, so thats another 50 bucks per month my hybrid is saving me. Tires are cheaper, the maintenance schedule is much more relaxed and the car is nicer to drive.

I know your just talking about gas savings, but your comparing the real MPG of the hybrid to the potential MPG, I think it would be more accurate to also factor into the equation the alternative vehicles, the one you had or the others you would have purchased to get an accurate picture of the difference is dollars spent between the two options.
 
  #6  
Old 11-30-2006, 04:05 AM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

Since getting my HCHII, and selling my '01 Nissan Sentra, which got 31 highway, and about 27 on average for the type of driving I do daily, I've saved over $730 in gas. That's in 4 months.

Works for me!
 
  #7  
Old 11-30-2006, 05:41 AM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

I'm going to chime in despite my non-hybridness because I keep track of these figures obsessively, and have set up spreadsheets to estimate how I would be doing with one of the hybrid options.

I used to have a year-long average of 30mpg driving the way I did. Since putting in the extra effort I have average 38mpg, and I think that I will end up with a year-round average in the range of 35-36mpg. That amounts to roughly $30/mo saved in gas money. But in 8 months that's also 92gal of fuel that I didn't burn and 1600lb of CO2 that I didn't add to the atmosphere. Those last two numbers are at least as important to me as the $256 savings. The sense of personal accomplishment is priceless.

I think that I could reasonably expect to push 55-60mpg out of a HCH after learning its tricks and putting in the same effort that I do now. @47mpg, I would save an additional $22 monthy vs. this car. @ 55mpg that number jumps up by another $14. Not nearly enough money to justify trading up on pure economics, but better than the proverbial sharp stick in the eye.

Thing is, what would happen if everybody made a little extra effort? How much fuel could be saved nationally? A lot. Likewise, things go the other way if everybody decides they would rather burn the fuel than drive a little better. One person's extra gallon doesn't sound like much, but multiply that by the hundreds of millions of cars in North America alone. It has to start somewhere.
 
  #8  
Old 11-30-2006, 06:24 AM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

Well Luis...

You ask how much money are we really saving?

Then someone would ask... Relative to what?

For many us driving a high fuel economy vehicle is a significant shift from their previous vehicle. From a financial standpoint, we stand to make the most out of our new car. Along the way we also discover that with the help of the technology in the vehicle, driving can be fun in a way we never though possible. Our love affair and the desire to better ourselves carries so many benefits that I only hope it could be more like a contageous disease or a wildfire.

Then there are those of us who were always striving for fuel efficiency because of what we believe to be right. Cost benefits are less relevant because FE did not change that much compared to our previous vehicle. In consistently choosing a fuel efficient vehicle we are just perpetuating our values of social and environmental responsability. Many of us subscribe to the "Choose the right tool for the right job" principle and it definitely applies to the automobiles we drive.


Now, addressing the remainder of your statements:

As I see it, hypermiling is the proverbial "Cherry on the cake". It can be a healthy thing to do provided that it does not violate any laws or affect others in a negative way. In any case, it is a mostly positive porsuit as it benefits the driver and - in a smaller way - the rest of us.

Yes, some people work too hard at it and their incessant bragging can be annoying if not a total turn off. Just ignore these instances if possible.

But when looking at these issues, I would encourage you to also see the larger number of us who drive the very same vehicle you do. We enjoy and appreciate our cars primarily because of the financial benefits (no matter how small or large these may be), what they represent, and the opportunity to set a better example.

I hope you enjoy your vehicle as much as you can and resist the temptation to measure your contribution in terms of numbers alone. There are so many good things we do in life that cannot easily be measured by just numbers. I belive THIS is one of them !


Cheers;

MSantos
 
  #9  
Old 11-30-2006, 08:03 AM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

Well, while I did experiment for a time with achieving the absolute best mileage that I could, including driving significantly slower, I agreed that it was not worth the extra time and hassle to go all-out with hypermiling. What I do now is that I apply driving techniques that do not cost any exrta time, thus they are essentailly "free" savings (whereas driving say 55mph on the freeway would be trading off time and significant hassle for fuel economy). Things such as anticipating traffic signals, driving with load over the hills to keep the engine RPMs in an efficient operating range, and minimizing jack-rabbiting help significantly, and should actually reduce general wear and tear on the car as well. On freeways and roads however I will go with the flow of traffic.
 
  #10  
Old 11-30-2006, 09:34 AM
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Default Re: How much gas and money are you REALLY saving ????

As Msantos mentioned it's kinda fun to hypermile. I was worried that having a CVT would make the car boring to drive, but employing basic hypermiling techniques really makes driving the HCH an engaging experience. As it is, I have a choice of driving my wife's hybrid or my turbo Outback (which is very "engaging") on most days and I always choose the Civic. I'm curious to see if this wears off a little once I'm more used to the car, but I don't anticipate that happening.

That being said, if I'm in a hurry, I wouldn't hesitate to dump the milage and drive like a "normal" person again .
 

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