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Fuel efficiency can stir the competitive instinct.
my 2003 Jetta actually does show the mpg. I drive a stick and average 27 mpg
Re: "... all it took was a number displayed on my dashboard...." Ah, the human condition. Amazing what a little prompt does! What does it for me? Those electronic "Your speed is ..." signs on the side of the road.
Spousal Unit drives an '08 Corolla. Nice car. When owatonnabill is herding it down the road he can get 42 mpg. Spousal Unit rarely gets over 35. Things like speeding up to get to a red light just to slow down abrubtly when you get there, accelerating to about 80 mph on the freeway just to pass some yokel tooling along a 62, and constantly alternating between the accelerator and the brake cut into her efficiency. Don't misunderstand. Spousal Unit is a better driver than is owatonnabill. Her reaction time is quicker and she is able to judge speeds of other vehicles more accurately. But not even Spousal Unit can repeal Newton's laws of motion.
Back during college, in the mid 90's, I drove an 87 Toyota Tercel Hatchback which had a manual transmission. That car would get 44 mpg on the freeway and 40 on city streets. I loved that car.
Maybe the key isn't hybrid cars, maybe it's going back to stick shift.
Ray...good work, but there's more dino juice to leave in the ground. Year round 50's (+- 60 in the summer - +- 50 in the winter) are frequently possible with a Prius or Honda Hybrid. I'm in the high 50's since May 11 in my Civic Hybrid.
2005 Toyota Prius, about 220,000 miles. 52-55 mpg in summer, 42-45 mpg in winter. Best car we have ever had.
I find it amazing the number of people that suddenly realize that they get better mileage when the car tells them the exact mileage they get when they accelerate or brake hard. I have been doing close to this for more than a decade with a 1988 CRX that does not track mileage so I do it with the tank meter. Anyone who watches their mileage closely realizes that the killers are hard acceleration and hard braking. If you do not do that and your car is maintained reasonably well, you can often beat the rated mileage stickers.
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