My first 9,000 miles in a 2008 US Smart Passion

Discussion in 'Mercedes-Benz' started by unicycle, Jul 26, 2008.

  1. unicycle

    unicycle New Member

    Hi, everyone. This is my first post on this forum, tho I participate A LOT in the smartcarofamerica (dot) com forum. This car has made me an obsessive hypermiler. In fact, my license plate reads HYPRMILR, so that's pretty obsessed!

    LURCH
    The car took a few minutes to get used to -- it was weird trying to drive off the lot and into Manhattan (NY) traffic bc of the automated manual tranny...it almost needs to come with an hour with your own instructor. There was more than expected lurching, but at speed (and once you're used to driving the car), you get accustomed to the way the car handles, and it lurches less, too.

    LURCH -- from the Addams Family
    ... could fit in this car. It's surprisingly roomy! I have had 6'4" occupants and some who were really heavy, and they all felt comfy in the car, to their universal surprise. The car looks like it's designed for the average 14-year-old, but it's the most comfortable car I've ever driven. It could use an armrest, tho.

    CONDITIONS
    WHO
    Just me. And I keep the car pretty light.

    WHAT
    Mine's the smart fortwo, US (gasoline) version, model 451. It takes high octane. I fill up in NY with 93 octane. I have also filled up often with 10% ethanol (in NJ), with no noticeable change in mileage.

    WHERE
    I've driven an average of about 800 miles a week, my commute consisting of 85 miles each way from home to NYC. About 85-90% of the miles on this car are from the highway, with all but 1% of the remaining miles in my quiet town, where the mileage is still quite good. That last 1% is NYC miles, which aren't as bad as you'd think due to my knowledge of The City and the fact that I can generally avoid bad traffic there. So most of my car's miles are low-traffic highway driving.

    WHEN
    I drive at odd times (not rush-hour), so I can P&G without causing problems for other drivers.

    HOW
    I tend to average about 55 mpg on the hway while P&Ging as often as 4x/mile. I draft occ'ly, tho generally the trucks travel too fast for me (70+). I've had to use A/C for most of July, but June was pretty clement and didn't require it. I use P&G + coasting in Neutral, tho I have concerns about tranny wear.

    OK, FINALLY the MPGs!
    The smart holds only 8.7 miles in its tank, and there's a light when you reach the 1-gallon 'reserve' (it's part of the 8.7 gal). I once managed 417.8 miles on a tank with about .2 gallons left, averaging about 52 mpg for that tank. This was back in the cooler weather. In recent weeks, I've learned more about HMing, so I've nearly made up for the use of the A/C. My average over a whole tank is about 45-46 mpg recently, and it's nearly 44 mpg since I bought the car (in May), over 27 fillups.

    SUMMARY
    I'm getting better at HMing, and the mileage of late has hovered over 45 mpg (occ'ly approaching 50 mpg). P&Ging seems to be worth about 2 mpg when I put the car in N versus letting the 5th gear re-engage (leaving the car in D).

    I love the car. It's a fun drive, and it's attention getting. I esp'ly love how easy it is to park in NYC -- one of the toughest cities to find a spot in. The mileage is great, and the car is holding up well.
     
  2. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Unicycle:

    ___Upload a great pic of you and your Smart Fortwo and let us move you to “Ride of the week”! Nice intro and great FE too :)

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne
     
  3. Mike T

    Mike T smart car dummy

    Welcome, that is a good result for a gasser!
     
  4. deezle

    deezle Well-Known Member

    Congrats on your new smart, unicycle. Very respectable mileage for a gasser --- I've been eager to hear what a hypermiler can do with one, so keep posting your results here.
    Am I correct in assuming your Passion is a coupe rather than the cabriolet? Do post a few photos.
    You might also want to visit the clubsmartcar dot com site for some more technical insights --- an alternative to your present source of info.
     
  5. MPG

    MPG Banned

    Hello, yeah I have seen one of those at my work. There pretty small I hear the epa is like 41 hwy so you are doing good! But doesen't your car have a 1.0L engine? You would think something that small and that light with a tiny engine would get way better fe that it is? Don't you think? My Tercel 4 Door 5 Speed Manual with 185K original miles averages 45-50mpg with using a/c when needed, and about 50/50 city/hwy with basic hypermiling.
    I am not trying to offend you in any way. I just think the smart car would get better fe that's all.

    Good Luck, MPG
     
  6. unicycle

    unicycle New Member

    Thanks for the info and suggestions, folx!

    My Passion is NOT the convertible. I use only the lowest setting for A/C when I do use it, and at such times I always set the temp fairly high so that I'm not taxing the engine in any way.

    I'm not sure if I SHOULD expect better mpgs -- I'm new to the whole hypermiler thing and really don't know much about cars. Yes, it's a 3-cyl, 1-liter engine. I sort of expected even more, yes, but I'm thrilled that I'm getting about 48-52 mpgs depending on conditions I think I'm averaging 48 on the recent tanks.

    I'll have to post some photos soon....
     
  7. Right Lane Cruiser

    Right Lane Cruiser Penguin of Notagascar

    In most cars (and I think yours as well) the AC duty cycle isn't changed by the temperature setting. When you raise the temperature with the AC on all it does is mix in more engine heat.

    For this reason it is usually more efficient to turn the AC to the coldest setting and then cycle it manually. Get cold, then turn it off and let the fan blow the slowly warming air on recirculate for a while. Turn it back on for a bit to get it cold again, then just circulate the air for a while -- and so on.
     
  8. Vooch

    Vooch Well-Known Member

    taconic or thruway ?

    henry hudson or 3rd avenue bridge ?
     
  9. atlaw4u

    atlaw4u Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the club.
     

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