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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just got a new '13 Cruze about 2 weeks ago. I was very impressed with the advertised fuel mileage. So far, I'm getting anywhere between 25 - 28 MPG with mixed city (a lot of traffic lights) and highway driving. I thought I would do a little better - somewhere around 30. I had a '10 Malibu that did just a little worse - around 22-24 mixed driving and that's a much bigger and heavier car.

The car is still breaking in - only have about 350 miles, so I'm sure it will improve as time goes on. I remember it improved with my Malibu after it broke in.
 

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I wouldn't fret about it yet. The car's still breaking in, and with the cold weather that's finally made its appearance recently thrown in too, that's a recipe for lower than expected fuel economy.
 

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You may be able to average 28-29 mpg driving a Prius under those conditions, hybrids don't work in fast acceleration and stopping in city traffic. Even a lot worse in cold weather, battery efficiency drops to nothing. But at least you are not driving a large SUV or a pickup, would be lucky to get 6-7 mpg in that kind of traffic just carrying you as the only passenger.

Hate this winter gas, average mpg dropped down from 39 to 33 mpg with the same kind of driving.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
You may be able to average 28-29 mpg driving a Prius under those conditions, hybrids don't work in fast acceleration and stopping in city traffic. Even a lot worse in cold weather, battery efficiency drops to nothing. But at least you are not driving a large SUV or a pickup, would be lucky to get 6-7 mpg in that kind of traffic just carrying you as the only passenger.

Hate this winter gas, average mpg dropped down from 39 to 33 mpg with the same kind of driving.
Yes, I heard that winter gas really hurts fuel economy. But I still thought that I would do a little better with fuel economy, but I guess I will need to have anywhere from 1,000 - 2,000 miles on the car before I'm getting the true MPG's that I expect. I like the feature where you can have 2 sets of fuel data in the DIC. I'm going to reset the DIC when I enter the highway to see what I get with just highway driving.

There's basically a traffic light on every corner where I live and they're long lights, so I do a lot of starting and stopping as well as idling before I hit the highway. I'm surprised I'm averaging as much as I am.
 

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You will start seeing better MPG when you get more miles under the hood. Thinking I read it was between 2-3,000 miles is when it will level off. Remember...the car is still getting used to your driving and what not. Never fear though...by this Spring, you'll be doing lots of bragging about your MPG!
 

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A few things to consider.


  1. As noted, your car is still breaking in. Give it a couple thousand miles.
  2. The weather has cooled down. This means that it is now taking your car longer to warm up, during which time it is dumping fuel in open loop mode. EPA testing is not done at these kinds of temperatures, and the car warms up more quickly. This takes a significant hit on your fuel economy.
  3. Your tire pressure may have dropped since you purchased the car due to a drop in outside temperatures. Even a few PSI will make the difference. Check those and make sure it's correct.
  4. EPA testing is done with 100% pure (ethanol-free) 91 octane fuel. What are you using? We have proven here that there is considerable fuel economy to be gained by using high octane fuel (91/93). Furthermore, you are now on a winter blend fuel, which contains less total energy than a summer blend fuel, and chances are you are using some percentage of ethanol.
All of these factors combined will result in a fuel economy lower than what you may have expected or read about. See my article on getting better fuel economy if you want a few tips on improving this, but don't expect to be hitting over 30mpg if you're sitting at traffic lights most of the time. What's your average speed showing?
 

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I'm getting about 37-39 consistently on the highway with less than 600 miles on mine so far. First fill up I put 91/no ethanol fuel in. I am pretty happy so far with mine, and it will only get better with break in wear.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
A few things to consider.

  1. As noted, your car is still breaking in. Give it a couple thousand miles.
  2. The weather has cooled down. This means that it is now taking your car longer to warm up, during which time it is dumping fuel in open loop mode. EPA testing is not done at these kinds of temperatures, and the car warms up more quickly. This takes a significant hit on your fuel economy.
  3. Your tire pressure may have dropped since you purchased the car due to a drop in outside temperatures. Even a few PSI will make the difference. Check those and make sure it's correct.
  4. EPA testing is done with 100% pure (ethanol-free) 91 octane fuel. What are you using? We have proven here that there is considerable fuel economy to be gained by using high octane fuel (91/93). Furthermore, you are now on a winter blend fuel, which contains less total energy than a summer blend fuel, and chances are you are using some percentage of ethanol.
All of these factors combined will result in a fuel economy lower than what you may have expected or read about. See my article on getting better fuel economy if you want a few tips on improving this, but don't expect to be hitting over 30mpg if you're sitting at traffic lights most of the time. What's your average speed showing?
1. Yes, I only have 350 miles. I remember my Malibu started getting better MPG's when I hit over 1,000 miles.
2. I did notice the Cruze takes a while to warm up. The temperature gauge stays on cold for about 4-5 minutes. With the Malibu, the temperature gauge started to rise within a minute. Once the Cruze warms up, the heat is great. It was really cold the other day and I didn't even have to set the thermostat all the way up. It got too warm. With the Malibu, I had to keep the thermostat all the way up to get good heat.
3. The tire pressure is where is should be. They're showing about 35-37 PSI in each tire, so that's plenty of pressure.
4. I'm actually using regular gas. Premium is so much more expensive where I live - about 40 cents per gallon. I know that turbos get better fuel economy with Premium, but the car runs fine on regular.

I'm actually seeing better MPG's already. Today, I got up to 30 MPG with mixed city and highway driving. Previously, I was getting 28-29, so it's already improving.

I'm going to reset the 2nd set of fuel data when I get on the highway. I'd like to see what I get with pure highway driving. If I'm getting 30 MPG with mixed driving, I'll probably get in the high 30's with pure highway driving.
 

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Honestly, if your in a lot of stop and go(stop lights) before you get on the highway, that is killing it. I would be getting over 40 mpg if I didn't have the little bit of city driving before getting on the highway. My highway has been 40-45 mpg at 70-74 mph and I'm not driving an eco model, just a 1LT manual trans car. I get between 31-35 mpg average with 50/50 highway/city. Your doing fine.
 

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I have experienced 17 mpg with my 04 Cavalier when I had no choice to fill up with ethanol gas in Milwaukee. Was a bad mix causing detonation, could only drive home at a maximum of 45 mph in third or forth gear to limit it. Even with a good mix, still get 20% lower fuel mileage with this ethanol crap.

The proponents of ethanol even say it may be slightly less. Paying 20 cents more per gallon, but even at 40 cents more per gallon, well worth it to use ethanol free gas. Not only in terms of far superior fuel economy, but far less corrosion in the fuel system components.

Not everybody hates ethanol like I do, spoke to many shops about ethanol, drastically increased their repair business. Land'O'Lakes loves it making a fortune both with non-documented workers farming their land, and a fortune on dairy products.
 

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I have experienced 17 mpg with my 04 Cavalier when I had no choice to fill up with ethanol gas in Milwaukee. Was a bad mix causing detonation, could only drive home at a maximum of 45 mph in third or forth gear to limit it. Even with a good mix, still get 20% lower fuel mileage with this ethanol crap.

The proponents of ethanol even say it may be slightly less. Paying 20 cents more per gallon, but even at 40 cents more per gallon, well worth it to use ethanol free gas. Not only in terms of far superior fuel economy, but far less corrosion in the fuel system components.

Not everybody hates ethanol like I do, spoke to many shops about ethanol, drastically increased their repair business. Land'O'Lakes loves it making a fortune both with non-documented workers farming their land, and a fortune on dairy products.
Somehow I don't believe that. 10% Ethanol provides higher knock resistance and slightly less mileage than 100% gas. They use it to increase octane in the higher grades actually.

You may have gotten bad gas, but it wasn't because of the ethanol.


Sent from my iPhone using AutoGuide.com App
 

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The Aussie V8 Supercars race using E85. They make more power but have to make twice as many fuel stops.
 

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I have experienced 17 mpg with my 04 Cavalier when I had no choice to fill up with ethanol gas in Milwaukee. Was a bad mix causing detonation, could only drive home at a maximum of 45 mph in third or forth gear to limit it. Even with a good mix, still get 20% lower fuel mileage with this ethanol crap.

The proponents of ethanol even say it may be slightly less. Paying 20 cents more per gallon, but even at 40 cents more per gallon, well worth it to use ethanol free gas. Not only in terms of far superior fuel economy, but far less corrosion in the fuel system components.

Not everybody hates ethanol like I do, spoke to many shops about ethanol, drastically increased their repair business. Land'O'Lakes loves it making a fortune both with non-documented workers farming their land, and a fortune on dairy products.
Regardless of what you think about ethanol, it is not the culprit in your 20% reduction in fuel mileage.

To the OP, can you give us more details? What trim / transmission / year are you? What is the average speed of your commute? Average speed helps us calculate the % hwy / % city split.
 

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I just got a new '13 Cruze about 2 weeks ago. I was very impressed with the advertised fuel mileage. So far, I'm getting anywhere between 25 - 28 MPG with mixed city (a lot of traffic lights) and highway driving. I thought I would do a little better - somewhere around 30. I had a '10 Malibu that did just a little worse - around 22-24 mixed driving and that's a much bigger and heavier car..
Given your driving conditions, the mileage you are getting is about right. It is nice to see someone being honest with mpg. With complete city driving in LA, stop and go with gridlock, I am happy to get 19mpg. This is actually pretty good for a gas powered car. Fossil fuels are so inefficient, it's embarrassing. Cheap though. Anyway, since you can mix up your driving with highway, your net will increase. I am surprised you are getting up to 28mpg really.

Note: mileage has nothing to do with a break in period. Degradation increases over time due to wear of components-- it doesn't magically vanish after 5000 miles for some optimal driving experience.

For average drivers, you can reasonably expect to get around 30mpg.

People like to come on this site and claim all kinds of great mileage. Generally it's a self induced lie to feel good about a purchase. But not even eco model owners get to break the law of conservation of energy so don't believe shockingly good mpg quotes. You will average 30 mpg if, and only if, you are able to avoid the city gridlock more. Recall that being stuck on a highway at rush hour is the same at gridlock in the city.

If GM could have advertised high 30s and 40s average for the Cruze or eco Cruze, then they would have. How odd, though, that they simply don't.
 

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Given your driving conditions, the mileage you are getting is about right. It is nice to see someone being honest with mpg. With complete city driving in LA, stop and go with gridlock, I am happy to get 19mpg. This is actually pretty good for a gas powered car. Fossil fuels are so inefficient, it's embarrassing. Cheap though. Anyway, since you can mix up your driving with highway, your net will increase. I am surprised you are getting up to 28mpg really.

Note: mileage has nothing to do with a break in period. Degradation increases over time due to wear of components-- it doesn't magically vanish after 5000 miles for some optimal driving experience.

For average drivers, you can reasonably expect to get around 30mpg.

People like to come on this site and claim all kinds of great mileage. Generally it's a self induced lie to feel good about a purchase. But not even eco model owners get to break the law of conservation of energy so don't believe shockingly good mpg quotes. You will average 30 mpg if, and only if, you are able to avoid the city gridlock more. Recall that being stuck on a highway at rush hour is the same at gridlock in the city.

If GM could have advertised high 30s and 40s average for the Cruze or eco Cruze, then they would have. How odd, though, that they simply don't.
Many of us track our fuel economy on fuelly.com, and those of us who have paid attention will note that fuel economy has gone up over the first few thousand miles. It's not an empty claim, and you're more than welcome to verify it by looking at their accounts.

You are right in that stop and go/gridlock type driving will kill your fuel economy. You're basically sitting there burning away gas for absolutely no reason.

As for the claims for great mileage; you need to consider the environment and the average speed of those drivers. Past that, you are more than welcome to visit their own fuelly accounts. Mine should be linked to in my signature and is regularly updated. I believe I'm to 39.2mpg as a lifetime average (~16,000 miles) with a 74% city driving split. My average speed is recorded in nearly every tank of gas that I've reported, from which my city/highway driving split is calculated. With 100% highway driving, I don't have any problems exceeding 50mpg.
 

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I have crappy 60 mile stop/go commute to drop off and pick up kids now that I work from home. Mileage went from 41 (all highway) to 30 (all city). 30 is with aggressive driving even. The winter grade fuel hasn't affected my mileage at all, but I use Chevron 91 only. My mileage went up from 23 to 41 over the course of 2 months after I got the car (100 miles daily commute). Also, what Cruze did you get and what numbers were you expecting? If you were going off the TV commercials which show an Eco, you're going to be really disappointed if you bought a different trim.
 
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I have crappy 60 mile stop/go commute to drop off and pick up kids now that I work from home. Mileage went from 41 (all highway) to 30 (all city). 30 is with aggressive driving even. The winter grade fuel hasn't affected my mileage at all, but I use Chevron 91 only. My mileage went up from 23 to 41 over the course of 2 months after I got the car (100 miles daily commute). Also, what Cruze did you get and what numbers were you expecting? If you were going off the TV commercials which show an Eco, you're going to be really disappointed if you bought a different trim.
Eh...not really. Any of them get good gas mileage. I'm too lazy to try to get good mileage, and still got this at 72-75 mph. Before getting stuck in traffic at the end. It showed 47 before that.



The Eco has absolutely NO advantage in MPG before 45 mph. Zip. Nada. After that, the tall 6th gear helps. I do 75-100% city driving, aside from long trips, and still have never gotten under the window-sticker 28 mpg per tank.
 

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The Eco has absolutely NO advantage in MPG before 45 mph. Zip. Nada. After that, the tall 6th gear helps.
You sure? It does better at 45mph than it does at 55mph. It's not just about the aerodynamic improvements, but also about the gearing and the fact that the manual transmission doesn't absorb and waste as much power as the automatic does. My average speed is consistently at around 30-32mph at the end of a tank of gas, and my commute consists of over 75% driving in 40-50mph zones.

For the record, if all I'm doing is cruising, I'll be in 6th gear by 35mph.
 
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