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    • LindaJoan
    • By LindaJoan 9th Aug 18, 8:00 AM
    • 1Posts
    • 0Thanks
    LindaJoan
    correct gear for fuel efficiency
    • #1
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:00 AM
    correct gear for fuel efficiency 9th Aug 18 at 8:00 AM
    Hi. This is one of your MSE tips (below) but is the exact opposite to what I was told on a recent speed driving course- that this advice is out of date as its based on old cars and is a myth because all new cars are much more fuel efficient at lower gears. The advice was- match the gear to the speed for fuel efficiency ie. 20 mph for 2nd gear,30 mph for 3rd gear,40mph for 4th etc so what is the actual evidence for the fuel efficiency with each type of driving? Also the course advice was designed to reduce speeding and make roads safer.
    MSE TIP-Change up a gear sooner. Always drive in the highest gear possible without labouring the engine. So change up much earlier than feels natural it will take some pace out of your acceleration, but as that's our first tip it isn't a bad thing. If you have a fuel efficiency display, you'll be surprised how immediate an impact this has.
Page 1
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 9th Aug 18, 8:11 AM
    • 15,334 Posts
    • 21,220 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    • #2
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:11 AM
    • #2
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:11 AM
    I drive an auto. I let the car make the decision for me.
    Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience. - Mark Twain
    • neilmcl
    • By neilmcl 9th Aug 18, 8:34 AM
    • 12,231 Posts
    • 8,994 Thanks
    neilmcl
    • #3
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:34 AM
    • #3
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:34 AM
    OP, are you related to Jonah61 by any chance - https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5879125

    • reeac
    • By reeac 9th Aug 18, 8:53 AM
    • 1,262 Posts
    • 509 Thanks
    reeac
    • #4
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:53 AM
    • #4
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:53 AM
    The traditional advice used to be to err towards low engine speed via changing up early and to get enough power by wider throttle opening. That way you reduce the so-called pumping losses (making the engine suck air through a narrow throttle opening). Lexus seem to support this philosophy as my IS300h has electronic CVT and favours low engine speeds .... at 70 mph on a level road the engine runs at about 1200 rpm which is an unheard of gearing for a petrol fuelled car. The car is red lined at 6000 rpm so the revs are there if needed.
    • Alter ego
    • By Alter ego 9th Aug 18, 8:58 AM
    • 2,501 Posts
    • 2,471 Thanks
    Alter ego
    • #5
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:58 AM
    • #5
    • 9th Aug 18, 8:58 AM
    MSE TIP-Change up a gear sooner. Always drive in the highest gear possible without labouring the engine. So change up much earlier than feels natural it will take some pace out of your acceleration, but as that's our first tip it isn't a bad thing. If you have a fuel efficiency display, you'll be surprised how immediate an impact this has.
    Originally posted by LindaJoan
    You may also be surprised at the impact on DPF if a modern diesel
    Loose means not tight, Lose means something is lost, simples no?
    Ignore me if you like, it's not the real me anyway.
    • NBLondon
    • By NBLondon 9th Aug 18, 9:05 AM
    • 2,365 Posts
    • 11,813 Thanks
    NBLondon
    • #6
    • 9th Aug 18, 9:05 AM
    • #6
    • 9th Aug 18, 9:05 AM
    Also the course advice was designed to reduce speeding and make roads safer.
    Originally posted by LindaJoan
    Well. I'm glad to hear that you actually knew why why you were there... Could it be that it the advice was actually intended to discourage people from accelerating, changing up and driving at 40 in 30 zones without noticing/thinking?
    I've got an indicator on the dash that tells me when to change up and that definitely wants me to be in 4th at 30 mph and 6th at 40mph. I was assuming that Ford actually know what's best for their engine... I don't follow it slavishly though - because I can read the road and the car can't.
    Womble #7 - Running Total 28.27 $4.28 6.64 S//0.10 (10 Ukrainian kopiyki) Bds$0.10 A$0.25 NZ$0.55 C$0.91 S$0.20 zl0.12 (Polish zloty) LB0.22 (Bulgarian lev) ISKr5.0 DKr1.0 CHF0.60 R0.10 (Rand not Rupees) KD0.05 (Kuwaiti dinar) MDL0.25 (Moldovan leu) YUM 1.0 (Yugoslav dinar)
    • Stoke
    • By Stoke 9th Aug 18, 9:15 AM
    • 2,982 Posts
    • 3,145 Thanks
    Stoke
    • #7
    • 9th Aug 18, 9:15 AM
    • #7
    • 9th Aug 18, 9:15 AM
    I was always taught to try to get up to the highest gear as early as possible, but I've also been told that is now not valid advice these days.
    • sevenhills
    • By sevenhills 9th Aug 18, 10:09 AM
    • 1,857 Posts
    • 707 Thanks
    sevenhills
    • #8
    • 9th Aug 18, 10:09 AM
    • #8
    • 9th Aug 18, 10:09 AM
    I've got an indicator on the dash that tells me when to change up and that definitely wants me to be in 4th at 30 mph and 6th at 40mph. I was assuming that Ford actually know what's best for their engine... I don't follow it slavishly though - because I can read the road and the car can't.
    Originally posted by NBLondon

    Me too. But do computers achieve a better MPG than the average driver?

    • neilmcl
    • By neilmcl 9th Aug 18, 10:13 AM
    • 12,231 Posts
    • 8,994 Thanks
    neilmcl
    • #9
    • 9th Aug 18, 10:13 AM
    • #9
    • 9th Aug 18, 10:13 AM
    Know your car's engine. Every type of engine has a peak/optimum power range. To get the best from your engine including optimising fuel efficiency you need to be in the correct gear that keeps you in this band. For diesels it tends to be in the 1800 to 2200rpm range, for petrol this will be higher

    Also listen to what your engine is doing, it will tell you if you're in the wrong gear. Any decent driver should not have to look at the car's dials to know whether they're driving efficiently or not.
    • Stoke
    • By Stoke 9th Aug 18, 10:16 AM
    • 2,982 Posts
    • 3,145 Thanks
    Stoke
    Me too. But do computers achieve a better MPG than the average driver?
    Originally posted by sevenhills
    If programmed correctly, I would back a computer to drive more efficiently than a driver.
    • neilmcl
    • By neilmcl 9th Aug 18, 10:21 AM
    • 12,231 Posts
    • 8,994 Thanks
    neilmcl
    Me too. But do computers achieve a better MPG than the average driver?
    Originally posted by sevenhills
    As per my post, the ECU is programmed to know exactly what the correct power band is for that engine and will inform you which gear you need to be in at any one time to achieve this.
    • sevenhills
    • By sevenhills 9th Aug 18, 10:51 AM
    • 1,857 Posts
    • 707 Thanks
    sevenhills
    As per my post, the ECU is programmed to know exactly what the correct power band is for that engine and will inform you which gear you need to be in at any one time to achieve this.
    Originally posted by neilmcl

    That maybe the case, but the computer does not know of the conditions of the road ahead, or whether you are likely to be slowing down in 5/10/60 seconds.

    • forgotmyname
    • By forgotmyname 9th Aug 18, 11:27 AM
    • 28,234 Posts
    • 11,485 Thanks
    forgotmyname
    Hi. This is one of your MSE tips (below) but is the exact opposite to what I was told on a recent speed driving course- that this advice is out of date as its based on old cars and is a myth because all new cars are much more fuel efficient at lower gears. The advice was- match the gear to the speed for fuel efficiency ie. 20 mph for 2nd gear,30 mph for 3rd gear,40mph for 4th etc so what is the actual evidence for the fuel efficiency with each type of driving? Also the course advice was designed to reduce speeding and make roads safer.
    MSE TIP-Change up a gear sooner. Always drive in the highest gear possible without labouring the engine. So change up much earlier than feels natural !!!8211; it will take some pace out of your acceleration, but as that's our first tip it isn't a bad thing. If you have a fuel efficiency display, you'll be surprised how immediate an impact this has.
    Originally posted by LindaJoan

    Are you the MSE spokeman / woman then?

    Why are you spouting LIES? Its not the 1960's you know. Did you realise long stroke engines are a dying breed??

    I tried your method and my average MPG went DOWN by 23%. Where do i send my bill for fuel you cost me?
    Last edited by forgotmyname; 09-08-2018 at 8:18 PM.
    Punctuation, Spelling and Grammar will be used sparingly. Due to rising costs of inflation.

    My contribution to MSE. Other contributions will only be used if they cost me nothing.

    Due to me being a tight git.
    • Jackmydad
    • By Jackmydad 9th Aug 18, 1:18 PM
    • 4,833 Posts
    • 15,866 Thanks
    Jackmydad
    I run my car on fuel extracted from spam.
    It will do up to 120mph in first gear, so I now never need to change gear, and remarkably I get around 60 mpt. (That's "miles per tin" incidentally)
    The residue is quite nice on sandwiches with tomato and mustard.
    • almillar
    • By almillar 9th Aug 18, 1:47 PM
    • 7,670 Posts
    • 3,147 Thanks
    almillar
    Hmm. Well there's not 1 speed for 1 gear. There are different cars with different gearboxes and engines and there are also things like hills, so the only firm rule is, be flexible.
    A high gear without straining the engine is a good guide, but with this you are left open to the car being allowed to run away - you've got less control over your speed - going down a gear might help control speed better with better throttle control at higher revs.
    And auto gearboxes, even DSG ones, are dumb!
    • Tarambor
    • By Tarambor 9th Aug 18, 4:44 PM
    • 3,978 Posts
    • 3,024 Thanks
    Tarambor
    I do a 28 mile each way commute almost all on rural main single carriageway A road at NSL with some hills to go over. Done it at cruise control maintaining the speed limit (joys of commuting at 3am in a rural county) using 5th gear at 60MPH and 6th gear at 60MPH and noticed NO difference over a week in the average fuel reading.

    OTOH at work we've got some new lorries to replace the 64 plate ones we have. They run different final drive ratios, change gear earlier and drive how you suggest. Despite being 480BHP instead of 460BHP ones they replaced they're returning around 10% higher MPG. HOWEVER because they change gear as the OP suggests they're slower on acceleration and climbing hills and the 4 year old 460BHP ones despite having 700,000km more on the clock go flying past them up hills and setting off from a standstill. The newer ones which drive as you are suggesting basically achieve the fuel saving by accelerating slower and I reckon if you were to follow one with the old ones and match its speed you'd get the same fuel economy even though the engine is running faster as it'll have less load on it.
    Last edited by Tarambor; 09-08-2018 at 4:49 PM.
    • reeac
    • By reeac 9th Aug 18, 5:46 PM
    • 1,262 Posts
    • 509 Thanks
    reeac
    Lorries that fly up hills? I wish that the ones that I encounter could do that.
    • unforeseen
    • By unforeseen 9th Aug 18, 6:42 PM
    • 3,189 Posts
    • 4,167 Thanks
    unforeseen
    That maybe the case, but the computer does not know of the conditions of the road ahead, or whether you are likely to be slowing down in 5/10/60 seconds.
    Originally posted by sevenhills
    I don't think there is any programming for my change indicator. If the revs go over 2000 and you are not in 6th then it tells you to change. I ignore it because I've found that 2300 seems to be the optimum for MPG and the engine sounding happy.
    • MataNui
    • By MataNui 15th Aug 18, 10:30 AM
    • 1,016 Posts
    • 564 Thanks
    MataNui
    Every modern auto i have driven tends to select higher gears and stay in them longer before down shifting. Since they would program the gearbox for max efficiency to pass the strict emissions tests i would guess higher gear (providing not laboring the engine) is going to be more fuel efficient.
    • loskie
    • By loskie 15th Aug 18, 10:41 AM
    • 1,432 Posts
    • 852 Thanks
    loskie
    My Honda CRV 2.2 diesel manual seems perfectly happy at 65 mph in 6th gear however the average mpg and instantaneous MPG display suggest that 5th is far more efficient.
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