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I drive a VW tdi 5spd 40k miles a year commuting 95% highway. I manage about 48-49 mpg with it. Its me alone in the car so I dont really need my back seat if you get my drift. I drive 65-70 75% of the time and 70-75 the rest of the time. (pretty much flow of traffic around here) What Kind of fuel economy would I expect out of a manual insight given those variables?
 

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IMO in the 50s somewhere. You might get into the high 50s if you're very careful. How do you feel about drafting the Hummers?
- Jim
 

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I dont mind drafting other vehicles, I follow trucks and buses when the opportunity arises. Seems like its not worth it for me if its merely a 5-10 mpg increase when im ready to add a care to the stable.
 

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OTOH, if you're willing to join the ranks of the insighters, you'll slow down a bit. I've noticed at those speeds, for every MPH I slow down, I gain a MPG. So I regularly get mpgs in the 60s on my drive to work, while going 55-60 mph in the slow lane. Other (more skilled hypermilers) get mpgs in the 70s, 80s, and higher.

- Jim
 

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Based on my experience from a recent extended road trip I supect you could manage 70MPG*. I managed 74.5 but was driving as much as 750 miles in a day. That gets the engine up to temperature. :D You would have to learn some of the finer details of driving an Insight and that would be in hot weather.

*I've been practicing for about 4 years now. Still learning. :D
 

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What part of the country are you in? Do you have to run the a/c or defrost a lot? That will lower your mileage in the Insight by a noticeable amount. Or do you climb a lot of steep hills? That will hurt too especially if you want to maintain the speeds you are discussing.

Jim
 

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I think the estimate of the 50s for a manual insight during commuter driving is pretty low. That sounds more like a CVT to me.

My case is very similar to yours. I drove a TDI Beetle on a 27 mile one way commute for 7 years, getting 45-49 MPG driving 65-70MPH. I just bought an '06 MT Insight and sold the VW with 196K on it.

If I am careful and slow, I get 85 MPG if it's warm out. This would be driving no faster than 60 MPH on the freeway probably.

Today it was 60 degrees, I was pretty careful and got 75 MPG or so.

I have done a little testing at higher speeds, but as others indicated, it's hard to go fast when you can instantly see the mileage penalty that results from it, so I tend to drive slower in my Insight than my Beetle which had no mileage indicator.

I would say if you even keep 1/2 an eye on the mileage indicator and pick up just a bare minimum of mileage techniques, you could get into the 60s driving 70MPH.

You can see all my mileage/fillups at the link in my signature. I'm about to perform fillup #5, yay!
 

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... I drive a VW tdi 5spd 40k miles a year ...
... I manage about 48-49 mpg with it.
... Its me alone in the car so I dont really need my back seat ...
... What Kind of fuel economy would I expect ...
The comments from the other Insight owners, while somewhat wide ranging, are realistic but if you have a "heavy foot" and are prone to "racing" from one traffice light to the next and the like, stay with the VW. You won't really "save" by going out and purchasing an Insight. but if you routinely drive at forty and fifty miles per hour, expect the higher MPG ranges.

I have a CVT (the "Silver Bullet", yes, a lot of us give these little cars nicknames because we like them so much) and while CVT Insights don't get the high mileage the manual transmission versions do, on roads with which I am familiar, on twenty, thirty and forty mile runs, MPG readings in the sixties and seventies are no longer unusual. In fact such MPG readings are so common that I'm annoyed if I don't get such MPG readings at at the end of each such run.

Hope this helps some :)

Fred
 

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thelemite said:
I drive a VW tdi 5spd 40k miles a year commuting 95% highway. I manage about 48-49 mpg with it. I drive 65-70 75% of the time and 70-75 the rest of the time.
You're better off to keep your TDI (or any other car you own). The gas savings of +10 extra MPG won't make up the additional money you spent buying a new car:

OLD CAR: 100,000 miles / 48mpg = 2083 gallons
NEW CAR: 100,000 miles / 60mpg = 1667
$ SAVED: $3.00 * 416 = $1248

No way will you be able to trade your TDI for an Insight and spend less than $1200. You're better off to stay with the TDI.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well It would be when I am ready to replace my TDI, not an upgrade. so the math of mpg vs cost isnt needed. Tdis and insights sell for very similar prices. ( I also would NEVER buy a "new" car")

seems like the insight isnt ideal for me. I am looking to not comprimise driving at normal speeds. I like the idea of being able to do some spirited driving and still get nearly 50 mpg. 55 mpg doesnt seem worth it giving up the advantages of a diesel.

I am in Northeast PA plenty of hills and i use the AC when its needed.

I am careful about shifting working the torque of the motor to my advantage. I dont routinely come off the light with undue speed, but I am looking for the most bang for the buck while driving normally.
 

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thelemite said:
Well It would be when I am ready to replace my TDI

I've seen Honda Civics with 1.1 million miles on them. Given your miles are mostly highway, which are easy on the engine, your TDI should probably last an equal amount of time.
 

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Focus TDci to Insight Manual in UK...

I have a Focus TDci in the UK and am selling it... Driving it hard I got 40mpg. Driving it like a grandand I got 50mpg.

I now have a 2000 MT insight and am getting ~75mpg by just driving a little slower and thinking ahead.

On a one way drive from Bury St. Edmunds back to Chelmsford... 40-50 mph with lots of hills and villages I took my tank average from 82.7mpg to 85mpg so I must have averaged ~90mpg. In my Focus driving carefully was not a big deal i.e. 5-10 mpg... In Insights it seems very prone to how you drive them...

p.s. UK gallons is 4.54 Litres i.e. 8 pints.
 

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TDI vs Insight

I also have a 5-speed TDI (with 45k miles), and can compare it to my 5-speed Insight. Unfortunately my driving is different than yours--very nearly all short city trips. I'm near Seattle, so lots of hills but not too hot.

I used to get 43mpg in the TDI with dino-diesel. (I have gotten 50 on the highway).
I get 39mpg in the TDI with biodiesel. (Actually my son drives this now)
I get 62mpg in the Insight.
And just for fun, my wife gets 48mpg in her '05 Prius, also with similar city driving.

I don't often drive the Insight on the freeway and/or at high speed, but I did spend one very hot day at ~65mph with the AC on full blast going over mountain passes. I got 67mpg.

Note that the TDI (mine is a 2000 Golf GLS) is nicer to drive on the freeway. Better ride and doesn't get tossed around as much. And it has cruise control! But I still am very happy with the Insight.
 

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Emotion

I would say that you will getter mpg if you drive the same, but if you drive fast and use AC etc. then will be in the 50s and 60s for your real LMPG even with an Insight. My girlfriend drives Bluebelle pretty fast and uses the AC and hovers in the high 50s (CVT not 6 speed). It sounds like you drive similarly, so I would say you will see 50s to low 60s for your LMPG.

First question: When you say you get 43 mpg is that a trip mpg or a really honest assessment of your LMPG?

I realize that unless you record eveyr tank mpg for the life of your car, you can't get a real LMPG for a car that does not record that. It is always easy to overlook the few 'short hops' that gave you rotten mpg, and only count the longer trips. You should take a really hard look at what your true LMPG is for you TDI vs. trip mpgs that stick in your mind.

That will help you compare, assuming you keep the same driving style.

Second question: When you sit at a light with the car idling does steam come out of your ears? When you go down a hill and don't see a battery charging indicator light, does steam come out of your ears? If yes to either of these, then the stress reduction of an Insight will be worth it.

I found that I went from a type A always going to the left lane and never being slower than anyone else on the road to a relaxed driver actually enjoying being on the roads in pretty much all circumstances. Even in traffic jams, you can work on your trip mpg or segment mpg.

I did NOT expect this total conversion of my personality, but it happened anyway.

The warning signs that you will be converted are the above. If you exhibit any of these warning signs, get ready to be converted!
 

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You might consider a Greasecar system in your TDI, then fuel is free and renewable, so MPG is not really a concern. I bought an old Rabbit, still have my Insight too, and set it up for grease. It is a really great system and you can feel good about doing it. You might ask around at restaurants to see if grease is around in your area.
 

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Re: Emotion

figgy said:
First question: When you say you get 43 mpg is that a trip mpg or a really honest assessment of your LMPG?
As a 7 year driver of a new beetle TDI, that sounds very doable. I found that my mileage never varied much either way from 45 regardless of driving habits.
 

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brpeterson said:
You might consider a Greasecar system in your TDI, then fuel is free and renewable, so MPG is not really a concern.

AFTER your warranty had expired. Volkswagen-America is stupid, and won't even let TDIs use bioidiesel.
 
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