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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone,

I’m trying to get the attention of Myth Busters to see if they might be interested in busting or confirming the myth that Hybrids (or any car for that matter) can never achieve the EPA’s estimated MPG.

I’ve posted a topic on there website under the category of “MythBusters Show Ideas” and have gotten some negative responses. If you want to see the post or even add your own comments you can see it here:

http://community.discovery.com/groupee/ ... 1431901228

I’ve replied as intelligently as time and knowledge allows me, so any additional input would be fantastic.

To get this Myth onto the show would be a great opportunity for educating the public on hybrid technology and how the proper use of this technology can dramatically increase efficiency.
 

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A member of another forum has in his sig:

"I reject your reality and substitute mine - Adam Savage" 8)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Which fourm is that?
 

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There's no myth there. EPA MPG ratings have always been for comparison purposes only. Thinking that a car's actual MPG should equal the EPA rating is like expecting that every male baby in the USA should grow to 5ft 10in because that is the average height.

Personally, I think EPA should multiply thier EPA by some contants and call something different. "My old car is rated 100 fooits while my new car is rated at 200 fooits so I can expect around twice the MPG with my new car."
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It doesn't matter what the EPA‘s rating was meant to do. What matters is what majority of people perceive the ratting to be. The majority of people perceive the rating to be a generally accurate prediction of what kind of fuel economy they can expect on average. As wrong as this perception might be, this is what most people believe to be true.

What’s going around these days is the myth that you can never achieve the EPA’s estimated MPG. I know this not to be true since I, and others, can consistently meet or beat that estimate at will.

This is not about whether or not the EPA’s fuel economy comparisons between Hybrids and Non-Hybrids is off. It’s about whether or not you can get 64 MPG when the sticker says 64 MPG.
 

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I watch the show. Very entertaining!

Proving that one can best the EPA rating is just not sexy, dangerous, stupid, funny, or explosive enough.

It would have to be something like:

Can you get electrocuted sawing one in half, or driving it off a bridge into salt water.

Will the battery pack explode if you drop the car backwards off a building.

:roll:

The EPA tests the cars then subtracts a fudge factor. In theory everyone should be able to exceed the EPA ratings. :D
 

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I thought it was common knowledge that the EPA numbers were under ideal conditions. But in the case of the Insight, most people get higher numbers.
 

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theorfander,

I joined and posted at that forum. Looks like one of the guys is a troller, but hopefully the others will listen.
 

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There is a bit of backwards thinking on this whole discussion about the realism of the EPA numbers. The test scripts were written in the days when people were worried about gas availability (not even the price, just getting it), and the national speed limit was 55. The tests don't line up all that well with even those driving conditions, but to say that the tests don't reflect how people actually drive is a bit misleading too. People drive 80 MPH because they can, and what we should do, rather than mangle the tests to make them reflect what you would get at 80, is put the speed limit back down to 55. Which will happen eventually.

My complaint about the EPA tests is that they don't capture the differences between technologies. What about diesels? What about plug-in hybrids? What about pure electrics? Natural gas power? French fry sludge power? Magical free hydrogen power? All of these possibilities should be incorporated into a new number that reflects the overall efficiency of the car...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Delta Flyer

Thanks for your support! You can see what I'm up against...
 

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Well, first, you will never see a 55 mph speed limit again, ever. It was a total fraud, ranking along with Prohibition as one of the most stupid laws in history. No one drove 55, and the entire mess simply created an excuse fior revenue generation by towns & counties. Any politician proposing such an idiotic return to this insanity would probably be hanged. Well, anywhere but Peoples Republic of San Francisco.

Now, EPA numbers. These are a byproduct, not a goal, of the EPA emissions testing cycle that were added to window stickers by dimwit politicians back in the '70s. At first they just used the highway mileage, which is calculated when the EPA does a simulated highway driving cycle that averages 50 MPH. Since virtually no one understood this, and no one drove 50 mph, and the fact that the cars are tested on a dynamometer with no actual rolling or wind resistance, just a calculated factor added in, people started howing to the manufacturers. In a rare concession, the politicians allowed the city cycle mpg ratings to be listed as well, started in the late 70s or early 80s. These seemed to be closer to what people actually got in real world driving.

The entire thing is another example of windbag numbnut politicians funding government bloat, substituting politics for reality and common sense. But, fear not, another round of elections will soon send another group of cursading pols to Washington to but it all right. The only thing for certain, the government will grow and you'll be happy to pay for it all in the interest public safety and global community.

Oh, my CVT has averaged 60.1 overall since I bought it. Sticker is something like 56, can't remember.
 

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The topic is MythBusters and the MPG "myth" of achieving the EPA estimates. More specifically maybe the use of an Insight or Hybrid in the show.

I "see" what your up against theorfander :(
T'was an interesting topic :)

Further OT political posting will be moderated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
THANK YOU MODERATOR!!!!!

I was just going to reiterate myself by quoting what I said earlier in that this is not about what the EPA’s estimates were intended to do, but whether or not the estimate could be achieved.

While what everyone is saying about the test is valid, its not on topic.
 

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Ok, let me take another non-political cut at it. :)

It seems to me that the point of the hybrid approach is that it's POSSIBLE to get really high MPG figures if you try. You can also get low figures.

I've tried using hypermileage techniques on several other cars, and it doesn't help that much. The tires, the drivetrain, the gear ratios, the aerodynamics, etc. simply prevent you from getting those really high figures.

Also, I suspect that when the details of the new EPA standards are published, Toyota, in particular, with the greater flexibility of their system, will simply change the settings in their system and continue to get really good mileage figures.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Some one please help me... I'm getting tired, I need backup!

Please, visit the Myth Busters post and post your thoughts
 

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einomies said:
How you drive a Hybrid really makes a difference in its fuel economy.
Judging from the tips you gave, driving a hybrid isn't different from driving a modern fuel injected vehicle in any ways. The same rules apply...

If you drive it like a race car, it consumes like a race car, because ALL of the energy used comes from the gasoline.

If you drive it like a car that has a small 1.3 liter engine, it consumes like a small car with a 1.3 liter engine. (or similiar)


This guy is 100% correct. I could take my Insight, which is predominantly interstate-driven, rip out of the electric pieces, and still get great fuel economy. Why? Because I drive it very efficiently w/ virtually no electric assist & constant velocity.

Or... I could import a tiny 3-cylinder Euro car, which has NO hybrid train, but instead has a tiny 45 horsepower engine, and achieves 70 highway MPG.

It's not the hybrid portion that gives great fuel economy. It's the tiny tiny tiny gasoline engine. The hybrid portion is only there to give the >illusion< of a more powerful engine.
 

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theorfander said:
Some one please help me... I'm getting tired, I need backup!
I suggest you quit. The EPA rating clearly states "between 50 and 80 mpg". It's a range, not an absolute value.
 

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theorfander said:
Some one please help me... I'm getting tired, I need backup!
I think Kip's got the best reply so far. Not really constructive, but I too like all the other posters so far have a hard time getting my head around this one. IMO its too "intelligent" a myth for the show.

AFAI remember its a 1/2 "myth" too. Shortly after the ratings came out it was generally accepted (from collective expereince) that the domestic ratings were optimistic while the import ratings were _more_ realistic. More recently (10+ years) any differences dissappeared.

I had an '86 F150 pickup with an I6 300 4 spd od. It was highway rated @24 MPG and I bought its configuration _because_ of the MPG. As hard as I might try I could never get better than 19MPG. Still wish I'd gotten a v8 with the underdrive gear.

Sincerely,
 

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I really do enjoy Mythbusters. Kind of wish I had their job!

Sorry if my reply was not more constructive. Let me try again.

The "myth" that hybrids can not achieve EPA ratings is likely propagated by magazines that promote American cars, Consumers trying to justify not buying a hybrid, and disgruntled lead foots that really thought they could drive like Ferrarri and sip gas like a Moped. One advert on TV even showed a geek driving a smoke spewing Moped in an attempt to get 300 miles to the gallon. I think it was by GM.

The truth is that most people do not achieve EPA ratings in real life driving, but a significant number do. According to the Greenhybrid database, the following percentages of drivers exceed EPA ratings in everyday driving:

50 % of manual Insights
43 % of manual Civic I
33 % of CVT Insights
16 % of Prius I
12 % of CVT Civic I
7 % of CVT Civic II
3 % of Prius II

It does appear from this that the Prius II rating is unrealistic. The Civic II is too new on the market for the figures to be accurate. It has only been available since winter started..
 
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