high mpg alternative

high mpg alternative

PostBy: titleist1 On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:09 am

Something I thought I'd mention to a crowd of folks that are used to thinking outside the box regarding fuel. its probably not news to some, but in case others are in a similar situation as we were, it gives a real world data point to consider.

I started looking for our next vehicle early summer. We can put a lot of miles on ours ('03 Silverado has 200k, '09 Acadia has 90k) so we decided to look for something smaller that gets good fuel mileage that we could use when the bigger vehicles weren't necessary and keep them for when they were needed. It seemed all the good mpg gasser models I looked at were either way too small econoboxes that felt like an aluminum box on a roller skate. the gassers that drove better seemed to get real world mileage of about 29 versus the mid 30's epa ratings. I wasn't impressed with those numbers.

I decided to go diesel and ended up with a vw passat tdi. after a couple months I am getting about 43mpg in mixed driving and on hwy trips i routinely get over 50mpg. much better than the epa estimates rather than worse and imo the car drives much better than the prius / volt / hybrid options we looked at.

i realize i am rolling the dice a little as vw doesn't have the long warranty like others and the maintenance costs of the passat (dsg tranny) can be higher. we'll see how it works out long term. since we usually hold on to cars for at least 10 years and put well over 100k on them i think the numbers work in our favor...if i was trading in every few years, maybe not. i am loving the mpg's...a recent trip to nj for an appointment was about 4 hours of highway driving at 65 - 70 and I got 56mpg for that day.
titleist1
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: LDPosse On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:01 am

Did you buy the passat new? I test drove a new '12 last year, very nice car, powerful, too!
LDPosse
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: mmcoal On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:37 am

I feel we should have more cars with a diesel option in this country. Chevy just introduced the diesel Cruze here which I guess is a start. Unfortunately, too many people think of big old smokey diesel buses and trucks when they hear diesel which might be why diesel hasn't gained much popularity in passenger cars. I guess it's a similar dilemma with coal, as most people picture smokey bit. coal. Between ethanol, ultra low sulfur diesel, big expensive batteries and half of the useless emission components I feel we are stifling the REAL progress we could be making in combating emissions and increasing mileage to where we should be. VW seems to make a nice TDI today, good luck with yours and hope you enjoy it.
mmcoal
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: SMITTY On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 12:24 pm

We can pretty much thank GM for ruining America's image of the diesel, after that abortion of an Oldsmobile engine ... which was a plain 350, only with high compression heads & no spark plugs.

I love the review on that engine: "... which grenaded in spectacular fashion regularly. "

But I believe it;s our government that won't allow these new diesels on our shores. All small cars here are shitboxes, while in Europe they get upward of 60 mpg and last forever. Been hearing that for years - been a long, common practice for some reason ....

I hear those VW's are super expensive when something breaks.
SMITTY
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: anthony7812 On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:49 pm

SMITTY wrote:I hear those VW's are super expensive when something breaks.


No different than any other import, Toyota repairs arent as high as the rest due to IMO the popularity of their fleet. Hell Smitty is any new vehicle not expensive too fix anymore?
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: SMITTY On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:50 pm

Got a point there ... :|
SMITTY
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: mmcoal On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:52 pm

SMITTY wrote:We can pretty much thank GM for ruining America's image of the diesel, after that abortion of an Oldsmobile engine ... which was a plain 350, only with high compression heads & no spark plugs.

I love the review on that engine: "... which grenaded in spectacular fashion regularly. "

But I believe it;s our government that won't allow these new diesels on our shores. All small cars here are shitboxes, while in Europe they get upward of 60 mpg and last forever. Been hearing that for years - been a long, common practice for some reason ....

I hear those VW's are super expensive when something breaks.

I wouldn't completely blame the 350 diesel which actually was designed to be a diesel contrary to popular belief of it being a converted gas engine. The diesel engines Oldsmobile produced in that era were just quick designs that obviously had many flaws.
mmcoal
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: EarthWindandFire On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:08 pm

Diesels are making a HUGE resurgence in the United States. Personally, I would love to have one. The most notable new vehicles are the light-duty diesels coming soon in the Dodge Ram 1500, Nissan Titan etc.
EarthWindandFire
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: tsb On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 2:15 pm

Whatever you paid for the VW, over the next five years expect to pay that
again to keep it on the road. They are fun to drive, but a nightmare to fix.
Maybe the oil pig will be better than the gas jobs.
Good luck.
tsb
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: DePippo79 On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 7:36 pm

A gas engine will never beat a diesel in efficiency. The Olds rocket engine converted to diesel, yeah bad idea. Use to work for a VW guy. Never had any problems with the diesels. Pretty much bulletproof. Replaced a injection pump once and that was only because of leakage. Wish I still had my diesel Rabbit. 55 MPG. There's a reason why they call it preventive maintenance. I would never let the clowns at the fast lube places do a oil change never mind sheduled maintenance. Told my new car might need new wiper blades to pass inspection when I moved to NH. Yeah go screw went somewhere else. Friend of mine has 400,000 miles and counting on his Jetta TDI. Anyway good luck with your new car. I wanted a VW diesel, but a little too pricey for me.
DePippo79
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: titleist1 On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:46 pm

i started with the intent of buying a used one, but did end up buying a new 2013 because the price difference between the used ones i was looking at and the new ones was only in the $3k-$4k range and the included maintenance and warranty on the new one tipped the scales for me. i think the '14's just coming out helped the price on the '13. seeing how scarce the used diesels were also made me feel a little better about the design since people seemed to be holding on to them. also the cost for us is offset a bit because 95% of the miles will be business expense.

i do have my fingers crossed on the maintenance costs, although everything is covered for the first 30k miles including oil changes. I know there is a pricey scheduled maintenance coming for the tranny at 40k. if i get beat up on the maint $$ i will report back so cost of ownership is known.

we have had a couple german cars over the years so i know what parts can run for them. i always thought i should be buying stock in bosch. although after paying about $400 for a fuel pump recently for the silverado i am not sure there are many domestics left that are reasonable $$ to maintain.

I figure if i can get 200k and counting out of my v8 silverado gasser, i should get at least that out of the passat. i hope the US companies start making more diesel's because i'd rather buy american. i see the '14 cruze has it as an option but i'd rather wait a few years to see them work out the bugs in their design and see if they are committed to that engine.

and you can all thank me because i feel personally responsible for the drop in gas prices since rug has come down from about 3.60 to 3.25 since i got the tdi and i get to hear from the spousal unit about the cheap gas vs diesel every time we go past a gas station. :roll: i have given up explaining the 30% difference in energy between gas & diesel.
titleist1
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: Salemcoal On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:14 pm

Diesels are the way to I have had many used ones and never been let down. I drive a 82 mercedes 240 everyday to work and back. More like a tractor than a car , built to last a lifetime, I am also building a winter beater 240d . They are easy to fix and maintain. If there are current diesels built like the 123 chassis mercedes diesels they would be a steal . Buying used diesels that you are sure of the maintenance history of has worked out for me. Have a 02 7.3 powerstoke too, I like how it drives 2wd 23mpg highway, but prefer the 2nd generation 12 valve cummins in the Dodge.
Salemcoal
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: mmcoal On: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:56 pm

My brother use to have a 1982 Nissan Maxima diesel. Great car, 2.8L in-line 6 diesel with rear wheel drive and it was much heavier than it looked. I would have loved a diesel in my pickup, but that is a whole other ballpark when it comes to making that expense up in efficiency.
mmcoal
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: SMITTY On: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:25 am

I remember the old Rabbits - my buddy had one. 55 mpg ... and 55 HP! :funny: Slowest car I had ever been in in my life. Downright dangerous to merge on the highway with.
SMITTY
 
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Re: high mpg alternative

PostBy: whistlenut On: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:32 am

0 to 60 in 60 minutes.... NO danger of a thrilling moment......

The new TDI are outstanding.....except when service is required. I drove the Cruise diesel and am impressed with the power, and smooth performance.
(and I trust that tranny waaaaaaaay more than the VW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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