close

Privacy guaranteed - Your email is not shared with anyone.

How Much Power is Enough vs Fuel Cost?

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by DanaT, May 28, 2012.

  1. DanaT

    DanaT Pharaoh

    Messages:
    27,669
    Likes Received:
    5,467
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    CO & Baden –Württemberg
    This last weekend has got me thinking what is "enough" power and speed and what kind of a trade off would you vs fuel consumption?

    This last weekend has been a holiday weekend meaning autobahns were low traffic and the left foot could get heavy. Add to the fact that due to a tight work meeting schedule on Friday when I got off the plane I didnt hop on the train and go to my apartment and pick up my work car (a BMW 120d). I actually got a pretty fast rental car 325hp and I had it to 245kmh).

    But all of this came at a price. I drove a little more than 1000km (so right at 600 miles). I used 236 euros in fuel (so $280).

    Having power and going fast uses lots of fuel.

    To put this in perspective the 120d would use half the fuel (or less) and still do 210kmh (130ish).

    The big difference is the small diesel takes a while to get to 210 and this car got there quickly.

    So there is trade off between vehicle size weight power and fuel usage.

    For a Daily driver, what does the GT braintrust think is a good compromise? Since gas varies in price how many dollars / gallon (or miles per dollar) fuel would you be willing to pay before sacrificing power/size for fuel savings?

    Dana


    Outdoor Hub mobile, the outdoor information engine
     
  2. 686Owner

    686Owner NRA Life Member

    Messages:
    13,396
    Likes Received:
    2,305
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2007
    Location:
    KY
    I don't need a car to be that powerful. My wife's Huyndai Accent was about as weak a car as I would want though for getting onto the highway. 112 HP. Any slower and it would be dangerous IMO.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2012

  3. DanaT

    DanaT Pharaoh

    Messages:
    27,669
    Likes Received:
    5,467
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    CO & Baden –Württemberg
    See that is what is interesting. I think there is also a lower limit.

    So the opposite question would also be valid, what is the minimum power/speed that you would accept for driving?

    I would guess that 0-60 in the 8 to 9 second range is what the threshold for most people is. They won't really spend much more for faster, but the will spend to get to that speed.

    Dana


    Outdoor Hub mobile, the outdoor information engine
     
  4. wrenrj1

    wrenrj1

    Messages:
    7,206
    Likes Received:
    397
    Joined:
    May 22, 2002
    Location:
    Huskerville
    Get a Honda, well maybe one with the Honda engine what won the Indy 500 yesterday:tongueout:...
     
  5. G36's Rule

    G36's Rule Senior Member

    Messages:
    9,373
    Likes Received:
    85
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2001
    Location:
    Spring, TX.
    So you were pushing heavy on the clutch?
     
  6. MoparMan1991

    MoparMan1991

    Messages:
    247
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Location:
    Barksdale AFB, LA
    That's what I'm thinking, and we all know that'll get you nowhere fast.

    But realistically, I have a 2001 Durango with a 4.7L V8, it has a fully boxed frame and weighs a good 6,000 Lbs. It gets me to 60mph in the 8-10 second range and it does the trick for me. Though I would be significantly happier with a 2010 HEMI Ram with a 4.10:1 gearing.
     
  7. 427

    427

    Messages:
    6,997
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2009
    Location:
    KUMSC
    Milage, acceleration and top end is all about the gearing.
     
  8. stevemc

    stevemc

    Messages:
    505
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2009
    It's all in your perspective. My little 200cc motorcycle gets about 115 miles per gallon, and I can get up over 80 MPH. Street legal with tags and off road too.
     
  9. byf43

    byf43 NRA Endowment Life Member

    Messages:
    12,107
    Likes Received:
    775
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    Location:
    Southern Maryland
    2011 Toyota Camry SE -

    179 hp 2.5L I4
    6-speed auto transmission

    Rated at:
    24 mpg city.
    34 mpg hwy.
    Consistently get 23-24 mpg city. I have gotten 36 mpg hwy, but, 34 is the norm.
    28 mpg combined.

    Don't know about 0-60 mph speeds, but, this car will easily do 120+ mph.
     
  10. MoparMan1991

    MoparMan1991

    Messages:
    247
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    May 1, 2012
    Location:
    Barksdale AFB, LA
    Yes but you also have a higher power to weight ratio than most cars do. You could own a car with 7500HP but if it weighs 50,000Lbs then your back down to the 0-60 in 10 minutes.
     
  11. DanaT

    DanaT Pharaoh

    Messages:
    27,669
    Likes Received:
    5,467
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    CO & Baden –Württemberg
    No it's not.

    It is about power, weight, aerodynamics, and then gearing.

    You won't go 200mph in a pickup 300hp 4x4 pickup truck with the right gearing no matter what gears you put in. Yes, you can run out of gearing before you hit top speed but that is very rare. Almost all vehicles are power limited (or electronically governed) before they run out of gear.

    If you don't believe that name one stock car that is gearing limited on top end.

    Dana


    Outdoor Hub mobile, the outdoor information engine
     
  12. DanaT

    DanaT Pharaoh

    Messages:
    27,669
    Likes Received:
    5,467
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    CO & Baden –Württemberg
    Easily is relative. Keep in mind you have to accelerate to that speed and that takes more distance than I most think it does.

    Dana



    Outdoor Hub mobile, the outdoor information engine
     
  13. byf43

    byf43 NRA Endowment Life Member

    Messages:
    12,107
    Likes Received:
    775
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    Location:
    Southern Maryland

    Granted, this car doesn't have a lot of low-end 'grunt', but, it's got a hell of a top-end.

    With the variable valve timing (called vvt-i), this engine/trans really starts pulling it's load around 3800 rpm and up.

    For a daily driver (to/from DC) and the trips to/from Blacksburg, VA, this car is comfortable, and peppy enough for a gray-haired, 58 year old. :supergrin:

    My old '93 es300 is more 'peppy', but, it's ride/handling is like a wet sponge.
    That old Lexus will do 130 mph, without breaking a sweat, too. (It would make a great carnival ride, for those that want to get the pucker factor going at/near 100 mph.):wow:
     
  14. DanaT

    DanaT Pharaoh

    Messages:
    27,669
    Likes Received:
    5,467
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    CO & Baden –Württemberg
    When you must deal with accelerating from slow cars, slowing for them, the camry would be about 115mph car. Remember at 120, you are covering two miles a minute. Also, it is really surprising how slow cars accelerate on top end.

    Agree with you though, a squishy car is scary at top speeds. In general I find toyotas I have driven all very squishy and disconnected.

    As you are content with that 8 to 9 second 0 -60 (which is about the top speed you mention) that is the "sweet spot" for most cars (also why so many cars are sold in that speed range)

    Dana


    Outdoor Hub mobile, the outdoor information engine
     
  15. larry_minn

    larry_minn Silver Member Millennium Member

    Messages:
    12,571
    Likes Received:
    3,561
    Joined:
    Dec 16, 1999
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Well you speeds are higher then legal on this side of pond. :0 I have found the trade off in speed, power, time is this.

    + 60mph is my best trade off in speed,time, cost. I drive multiple cars/trucks. The pickups esp as I hit 70+ the MPG drops hard. Most trips are under 900 miles. (ok most are under 100 miles round trip) But even on long trips I can get there quickly by staying (near) speed limit.
    In car I do 29+ (can just touch 30 rarely) if I cruise in lower 60s. If I set at 70 its 26mpg area. Over that :(
    One pickup between 60 and 75mph is 7mpg loss... Almost HALF the mpg.
     
  16. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

    Messages:
    7,437
    Likes Received:
    1,774
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 1999
    Location:
    Blue Planet
    Since most of us live in the states where the maximum speed limit is 70 mph (75 in a couple places and 65 in some of the more retarded states) the power factor is pretty much a moot point. There are very few cars that won't cruise at 75-80 all day long. Frankly that's about as much as you need.

    Even so I still see lots of people in big honking PU trucks, SUVs, Hummers etc cruising at 80-85 so apparently fuel prices and economy doesn't really matter to them.
     
  17. DoubleWide

    DoubleWide

    Messages:
    4,529
    Likes Received:
    635
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2008
    I think power and mpg for daily driving really depend on what daily driving means. I can average near 30mpg at 85mph on flatter highways, and over that at lower speeds, but in a hilly city area, I get 22-23. I really don't notice gas prices or how much I spend until I take long trips and have to fill it up so close together.

    Car mags say 0-60 in 5.1
     
  18. Bushflyr

    Bushflyr ʇno uıƃuɐɥ ʇsnɾ Millennium Member

    Messages:
    3,532
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 1999
    Location:
    Western WA
    Why I LOVE turbos. My WRX gets 29mpg on the freeway at 70mph. I average 23-24 in mixed driving. I get 9 on the track. :supergrin: In daily driving it's just a little low compression 2.0l sipping gas, but it has plenty of power when I want it.

    Above about 60-80ish I think aerodynamics starts to play the biggest role. Parasitic drag increases exponentially as does the power required to keep the car at a given speed.
     
  19. vart

    vart

    Messages:
    14,635
    Likes Received:
    6,591
    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2000
    Location:
    The Palouse
    2012 4cyl Fusion with the exact same HP and mileage figures...

    My daily commute takes me an hour and ten minutes and about 4k' in elevation change which means lots of hills.

    The little 4cyl is adequate, but the near constant upshifting and downshifting of the tranny drives me nuts!:steamed:

    If I am able to keep my job, my next commuter will be the 2013 Focus ST with a 6spd manual and 250hp...:supergrin:
     
  20. M&P15T

    M&P15T Beard One

    Messages:
    23,823
    Likes Received:
    6,254
    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2011
    Location:
    Arlington, VA.
    Performance good.



    <------0-60 4.3 seconds. Top speed limited to 155MPH

    Not fast enough.

    Gas mileage? Oh hell, never mind.:rofl::rofl:
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2012