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Had a Breakthrough Regarding MPG

MPG

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48 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   nsteblay

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 10:44 PM

I along with many others have had some frustration with the lack of meeting the EPA MPG for the C-Max. I've been trying all sorts of different techniques for achieving better mileage. I had a breakthrough this afternoon.

The 2 techniques I've decided are required to get the EPA mileage.

Pulse and Glide

The trick to increasing mileage as much as possible is to be in EV mode. I was attempting to stay in EV mode as I was accelerating from stops or slow traffic by babying the gas pedal. What I've discovered is if you accelerate to your desired speed quickly (hopefully the speed limit :)) and then totally let up on the gas EV will kick in. Immediately after EV kicks in resume pushing on the gas peddle being careful not to engage the gas engine again. I then glide as long as I can in EV mode. I repeat this process whenever necessary.

Brake Early and Long

The brake system does a good job of recharging the battery. The trick here is to use it as often as possible. I have been breaking much earlier, steadier, and for as long of a time as I could.

Results

Before I was at best getting just about 40 MPG.

Using the new technique I drove to the dealership from my house this afternoon in mixed traffic (hills, freeway and stop lights). I was easily keeping up with the traffic. I actually was accelerating to the speed limit faster than those behind me. I think the CVT allows for some pretty quick takeoffs. I averaged over 50 MPG for the 26 mile trip.

I then had two small trips to pick up some pies for a church social tonight, stopped at church to drop them off, and then came back home. For the small trips (about 10 miles total) I was 47 - 50 MPG.

I am going to track now for the next week and will report back. The great thing is Ford has produced an interface that allows me to see what is happening under the hood and that trains me to drive more efficiently. The capability is there in the car I just need to learn how to take advantage of it.

There are other challenges I see coming. For one living in Minnesota means the gas engine will need to kick in just to keep the car warm. This will undoubtedly impact mileage. Also snow packed slippery roads won't help. I am glad we've had a few warm days and I was able to easily make the EPA estimates with proper driving techniques. I am feeling much better about the car and driving in the right lane.

Nick

Edited by nsteblay, 22 November 2012 - 11:53 AM.

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#2 OFFLINE   littlebitfarm

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:10 PM

I discovered "Punch and Glide" this week also. Went from 35 MPG to 45 to 50 MPG (all short trips).

Kathie
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#3 OFFLINE   shaners

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:53 PM

I agree! We just took a 20 mile round trip to dinner and averaged 45+ MPG. I think this car (like any car) is not efficient until the gas engine is warm. 1,2 or 5 mile trips won't get the advertised milage unless the car is already warmed up. Obviously the gas engine is needed for extra power and heat and charging, and once that motor is warm you will enjoy great MPG's. My wifes 3/4 mile commute four times a day will kill our overall MPG's.

#4 ONLINE   Laurel

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:10 AM

Shaners I wonder if she would like an Amish bicycle for Christmas LOL.

#5 OFFLINE   kechair

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:31 AM

nstlebay, please report back what mpg you are getting for the entire tank using these new techniques. Am happy that you are getting increased mileage!

#6 OFFLINE   shaners

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:50 AM

Laural, I have told her just to walk... it is good for her and will keep the door dings off the car! I might as well talk to the wall!

#7 ONLINE   Laurel

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 01:04 AM

I think you get a lot of snow in Pennsylvania--so the walking and/or an Amish bicycle/scooter might not go over so well. Seriously I have thought of ordering one of those scooter bikes since I watched an episode of Breaking Amish and saw one. They look kind of fun, and we have very little snow here on the South Coast of British Columbia.

#8 OFFLINE   Seymour_Bears

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 01:45 AM

I read in a C-Max review that a light touch on the brake pedal engages regenerative braking, and that additional brake pedal travel engages the traditional braking. So, it would make that a light touch on the pedal early, and very gradual slowing down, will make better use of the regenerative braking.

#9 OFFLINE   shaners

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 02:15 AM

Seymour you are right! We are avg about 95% right now on regen braking. Alot of times we see 98-100%. Laural, my wife has a beautiful bicycle she could ride too, but even though she is very physically fit, she still drives :-(

#10 OFFLINE   rkk

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:51 AM

For those who want to get the best possible mileage, maybe even hypermiling here is the place to go.

http://www.cleanmpg....read.php?t=1510

#11 OFFLINE   nsteblay

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 11:45 AM

For those who want to get the best possible mileage, maybe even hypermiling here is the place to go.

http://www.cleanmpg....read.php?t=1510


Awesome article! Thanks.

Here is one I found regarding hypermiling with the C-Max. http://www.examiner....ive-gets-60-mpg

Nick

Edited by nsteblay, 22 November 2012 - 11:52 AM.


#12 OFFLINE   salprint

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 02:58 PM

I also do that method...and my 30 mile trip to work everyday has been averaging over the 47 mpg that the car is rated at.

#13 OFFLINE   RaPieR

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Posted 22 November 2012 - 10:31 PM

I along with many others have had some frustration with the lack of meeting the EPA MPG for the C-Max. I've been trying all sorts of different techniques for achieving better mileage. I had a breakthrough this afternoon.

The 2 techniques I've decided are required to get the EPA mileage.

Pulse and Glide

The trick to increasing mileage as much as possible is to be in EV mode. I was attempting to stay in EV mode as I was accelerating from stops or slow traffic by babying the gas pedal. What I've discovered is if you accelerate to your desired speed quickly (hopefully the speed limit :)) and then totally let up on the gas EV will kick in. Immediately after EV kicks in resume pushing on the gas peddle being careful not to engage the gas engine again. I then glide as long as I can in EV mode. I repeat this process whenever necessary.

Brake Early and Long

The brake system does a good job of recharging the battery. The trick here is to use it as often as possible. I have been breaking much earlier, steadier, and for as long of a time as I could.

Results

Before I was at best getting just about 40 MPG.

Using the new technique I drove to the dealership from my house this afternoon in mixed traffic (hills, freeway and stop lights). I was easily keeping up with the traffic. I actually was accelerating to the speed limit faster than those behind me. I think the CVT allows for some pretty quick takeoffs. I averaged over 50 MPG for the 26 mile trip.

I then had two small trips to pick up some pies for a church social tonight, stopped at church to drop them off, and then came back home. For the small trips (about 10 miles total) I was 47 - 50 MPG.

I am going to track now for the next week and will report back. The great thing is Ford has produced an interface that allows me to see what is happening under the hood and that trains me to drive more efficiently. The capability is there in the car I just need to learn how to take advantage of it.

There are other challenges I see coming. For one living in Minnesota means the gas engine will need to kick in just to keep the car warm. This will undoubtedly impact mileage. Also snow packed slippery roads won't help. I am glad we've had a few warm days and I was able to easily make the EPA estimates with proper driving techniques. I am feeling much better about the car and driving in the right lane.

Nick



What speeds are you using this technique? Below 60MPH or higher?

I'm assuming below 62MPH to remain in EV mode, then maintain that speed in gas mode to recharge the battery and repeat once the battery is fully charged?

#14 OFFLINE   AgentCMAX

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 10:15 AM

I've had my first fill up since I purchased the C-Max two weeks ago and I got 46.2 mpg (posted on fuelly.com). This is with about 50% city/hwy and going at max hwy speed of about 62-65mph. I was driving essentially the same as you...coming up to speed limit and then backing off on the gas until the EV mode kicks in. I also try to stay below 2K on the Tach when starting from a stop position (as long as I don't impede traffic behind me). On some city routes less than 5 mile, I was seeing 80+ mpg (but I think this is due to the slight downhill slope. So if I had to go back the same route, I'd probably get a combined mpg of 60+ mpg or so). So far on my second full tank, the mpg has dropped down to 40+ mpg. I think this is due to not being has concious about my driving. Anyway, good post!

Edited by AgentCMAX, 23 November 2012 - 10:17 AM.


#15 OFFLINE   xSZYDx

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 06:38 PM

The push&glide technique works wonders. This car was made for it. After discovering this thread I now get 50-52mpg on my 13 mile commute to work.. 108 miles into the tank and not even to 3/4.. range comp says 340 til empty

#16 OFFLINE   seattlerain

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 09:10 PM

I have also tried this with some success. It works on most trips; but not all. On my shorter trips to work/back it works pretty well. Difference from 34 - 39MPG. On my long trips that I take a few times a week (15 mile 70MPH zone, 70 miles 60 MPH zone) I decided to change my strategy and just drive the speed limit (60 in 60 vs 66, and 70 in 70 vs. 74). Difference was pretty big; jumped from 32MPG to 39MPG on that trip. I'm up over 3K now, and I'm starting to notice a bit better battery usage, but maybe that's just my punch / go techniques; I do this on the freeway too; I'll bump it up to 65 when it's already shifted to gas mode and let the Cruise Control take it back down to 60 or so. The biggest draw on the EV mode is gravity. If all routes were downhill this car would absolutely rule.
What I'm tired of hearing / seeing though (and I'm sure many of you can also agree) is the excuse of the 47MPG is an EPA estimate. My salesperson (multiple actually @ 3 different Ford Dealers were certainly selling that feature). While that is correct, go to Ford.com and look @ the CMAX site. Look @ Motortrends and all of the other reviews out there noting this as a 47MPG City, and 47MPG Highway, so 47/47 combined. Ford does advertise this, and with the exception of one person on Fuelly.com, no one is getting +/=47MPG, and most people are in the 30's. This was a major contributor to me buying the car. I was going to buy a Prius and found out about the CMAX. I prefer to buy American when it's a good product. Everyone I talked to said Ford is great, everyone loves them. So, I'm hoping that the geeks @ Ford can figure out a tuning mechanism to get us all a bit closer to 47MPG. I'm sure this car could do 47MPG in Las Vegas (Flat / Warm). But anywhere else in the country, I'm not seeing how that is going to meet it's EPA standard.
My wife and I are looking if we should just get the Energi, but after the hit we'd likely take it's not going to payout. The cost per mile goes from .10 to .08 based on our math.

#17 OFFLINE   mbedit

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 02:29 PM

I had a similar experince as the OP. My miliage seemed sporadic through the break-in period, but once I put 1000 miles on it, I took it on a road trip to see how it performed.

I drove it 400 miles, and got an average MPG of 40. The Road had a nice differentials of speeds, from 35 MPG to 70 MPG. From Observing the fuel mpg, it seems the that at higher speeds, 70 MPG, the milage drops pretty significantly, around 36 MPG, but when I had to slow down, or even stop, I started using the push and glide method the OP talks about, and the MPG shot way up to between 47 and 50 MPG.

In fact, I had an appointment once I got back from my road test, and after refueling and driving through town and back it reported 49 MPG on a 20 mile round trip.

On the road, the sweet spot seemed to be between 60 and 65 MPG, as the EV seemed to be able to charge and provided enough kick to assist and the MPG appeared to be around 40 MPG, once I Picked it up to 70+ as mentioned the miliage did seem to drop another 4 to 5 MPG.

I purchased the vehical hoping to average 38 to 40 MPG, and once hrough the break-in period it seems on course to deliver. Getting the 49 MPG on a town trip actually exceeeded my expectations.

I've tried both 87 and 94 octane gas, and don't see any difference between them, so I think I'm just throwning money away with the 94. The biggest difference, as the manual says, is how much ethenol is in the blend.

One thing that still has me confused, is everytime I've fueled up, the amount of fuel hasn't matched what the computer reports was expended. If some times it were over and others under that would make sense to me, but the c-max amount has always been under by about 1/2 a gal to the reported amount pumped... which makes me wonder wheres the extra 1/2 gal of gas going? I plan to refuel at teh same station / pump several times to eliminate variables that could simply be pump, or grade at teh station.

#18 OFFLINE   stranger267

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 06:06 PM

I got promised 47 mpg on freeway.

 

Recipie is simple:

- Premium gas

- Good tire pressure (I set up 39).

- Good weather

- No climate cintrol

- Cruise control in eco mode on 63 mph (not 65!)

 

And then it shows 46 - 48 mpg (I got 47.8 but had few miules on the city).

 

If cruise on 65 mph (+1 mile) it shows about 38 - 39 becasue EV mode is blocked on >= 65.

 

I believe that Ford must update software to allow EV moide up to 70 - 75 mph, else this 47 mpg became almost useless on California freeways (traffic speeds 70 - 75 mph). Of course, it will not show 47 on 70 mph but it can definitely show 43 - 45.


Edited by stranger267, 01 December 2012 - 06:07 PM.


#19 OFFLINE   darrelld

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 07:27 PM

I got promised 47 mpg on freeway.
 
Recipie is simple:
- Premium gas
- Good tire pressure (I set up 39).
- Good weather
- No climate cintrol
- Cruise control in eco mode on 63 mph (not 65!)
 
And then it shows 46 - 48 mpg (I got 47.8 but had few miules on the city).
 
If cruise on 65 mph (+1 mile) it shows about 38 - 39 becasue EV mode is blocked on >= 65.
 
I believe that Ford must update software to allow EV moide up to 70 - 75 mph, else this 47 mpg became almost useless on California freeways (traffic speeds 70 - 75 mph). Of course, it will not show 47 on 70 mph but it can definitely show 43 - 45.


I know the Energi is capable of speeds up to 85 mph in EV, not certain why Ford chose 62 mph except to ace the EPA test.

Edited by darrelld, 01 December 2012 - 07:28 PM.


#20 OFFLINE   Arthur

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Posted 01 December 2012 - 09:17 PM

I will have to try the method of get up & go,  I live in Maine in the Cold country, and I find the EV will not come on until the engine has warmed up.

Along with living in the hills, pulls down any chance of super mileage. Got 46.8 on a 200 mile trip yesterday though. Been running about 38 to 41 around town.


Edited by Arthur, 01 December 2012 - 09:22 PM.






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