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Hi Rick:

___And this one from a while ago …

http://www.usatoday.com/money/autos/200 ... eage_x.htm

___The item of note is that for most, they do not receive EPA estimates from their automobiles and the Hybrid’s exaggerate this fact even more. In other words, ask anyone if they have received an EPA estimate in an 04 Prius while driving 100% city? The same with the HCH and our Insight’s. Look at GreenHybrid’s Real Mileage Database for proof of the same. Even my wife driving the Corolla w/ 50 #’s in the Integrity’s and 0W-20 Mobil1 cannot achieve anywhere near EPA estimates (she drove to work and back with the Defroster on today for gods sake!) but give me the same and EPA estimates are so far in the rear view mirror as to wonder how come the EPA estimates are so low?

___I believe that most drivers simply drive like $**t. Our schools don’t teach economy driving and no one seems to give a damn other then us fortunate (or unfortunate depending on how you look at it) few that won’t let an EPA estimate stand no matter what or where we drive.

___Good Luck

___Wayne R. Gerdes
___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
___[email:3usivvzg][email protected][/email:3usivvzg]
 

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It seems to me that EPA for Insight is low, unless you drive it like a normal car and don't do any of the things we talk about at all.

The biggest factor might be the cold (warm) air mods for lmpg, but even so, it is so easy to get over EPA that I can't understand how so many people aren't able to do it.
 

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The article is interesting and fairly reported with good comments from authoritative sources. However there are a few head-scratchers.

I didn't know that the EPA was measuring tailpipe output instead of gas input. That seems more difficult to me than measuring fuel consumed, not less difficult as the site claims.

Also, there is talk in the article about hybrids having lower emissions and computers to control gasoline flow. Hello? Any car with fuel injection has a computer to control gas flow. And don't get xcel started on the whole emissions thing again :)

Wrapping it up, they cite a few people who are getting low mileage. I'm sure those people are telling the truth, but (shrugs) I drive 4 miles each way to work and back nowadays, none of it flat, some of it over speedbumps at 15mph on campus roads in 1st and 2nd gear, and I'm still getting 60+ mpg.

I just can't get worked up about it enough to send a letter to Wired. I'll just keep motoring down the road with a smile and a jaunty wave to people who take a long look at my little car.
 

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Highest I've experienced: 4.5L/100KM

How that guy achieves those numbers is a total mystery to this pilgrim. My wife and I are averaging 3.8L/100 (61+ mpg) and that's a combination of city driving (with lots of traffic jams), autoroute, plus a 700 vertical meter climb with 8% to 12% grades and lots of tight turns to get home. Total distance one way around 20 K's. The heaviest consumption we've had, 4.5L/100 (52 mpg), was in the winter with 4 snow tires not pumped hard at all for traction on snow and ice plus cold temps. I find it hard to believe anyone could be sucking down more gas than that. On the other hand, when I bought the car in Germany, she had 3,400 K's on the clock and a 6.1L/100 lifetime average! How the original owner achieved that is beyond me, though in his defence he was 85 when he bought the car and lived in Munich. Apparently didn't drive much and then died. Worked out well for me because evidently no one was interested in buying this economy car that was averaging 6.1L/100. Hence I picked her up for only 10K. Have to admit that average made me nervous when I headed off; I'd never seen an Insight, never driven one, and there I was with a virtually brand new one that wasn't showing anything like the economy I'd read about on this site. The worries rapidly disappeared as I averaged 3.6 on the drive home, combination mountain passes, autoroutes, country roads, traffic jams (lots of those in European cities). The only unfortunate aspect I see in that article is that it can turn people off to the economy possibilities with what, at least for me, is a stunning little car that has lived up to, and exceeded, my every expectation. And if people don't buy the car, it won't be built. Unfortunately reporters are like most people and don't really look beyond the easiest, fastest story line, aren't interested in searching out the truths from the exceptions, and have a general preference for bad news in the first place. I mean that's what the news is all about anymore, bad news, disasters, killings, etc., never, or certainly rarely, anything positive at all. Given that that condition is about the same here in France as it is in the states, though I think a little less exaggerated, I guess it's some sort of modern human nature response to the 2-minute interest window.
 

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Well said, enders.

I am reminded of typical MPG scores on Insights when they are test-driven. They were always quite low, comparable to the numbers reported by Wired, whether I see them in auto magazines or when I sit behind the wheel of one at a dealer. My Insight came off the lot after being driven around for just half a day with lmpg less than 40.

The low mpg had nothing to do with the car except maybe tire pressure and break-in period. It had a lot to do with driver behavior. I peaked my lmpg about 35k miles later at 76+ before my daily commute changed.
 

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When I test drive, two of the things I always want to try out the most are the acceleration and stopping. Cruising is only a small part of the test - and that's where the high mpgs reside.

Even when I was testing the Insight, I already knew that it could get great mpg from the board, so I wanted to know if it really was perky and stopped well and handled well. Does it has the guts to acclerate onto the freeway, etc. etc.

My test drive was all about feeling it out for performance and handling, and little about mpg which I took for a given from research.

I bet others are similar, and that makes the test mpg on average even lower than ever.
 
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