Well, I had to make a business trip from ELM to Boston last week and I
needed to drive up and fly back so I got a one-way rental from Avis.
Guess what kind of rental car I got? Yep, a Sonata! I don't know what
model it was, but it had the V-6 and automatic. It had a trip computer
and automatic headlight setting, but otherwise seemed very similar to my
GL. It was a decent car for the trip and the computer got up to 31 MPG
by the time I reached Boston and this was running right at 70 MPH most
of the way (I actually averaged 66 MPH according to the computer). I
didn't check the mileage manually as I have no way of knowing how full
the car was when I got it, but I don't think it got 31 MPG as the tank
dropped noticeably faster than my 4 cylinder Sonata and its best ever
mileage was 32. I'm guessing I got 28-29 based on the rate at which the
tank was dropping as that is what I am getting currently with my Sonata
commuting to work.
The trip computer was fun to play with, but lacked an instantaneous MPG
readout. I find those very entertaining when driving in hilly country,
drafting semis, etc. I'm surprised that Hyundai didn't include that.
Does the top-o-the-line model have an instantaneous MPG readout?
I used to do that on my Honda 90 when I was a kid. Top speed was
normally 60, and it got me an extra 5-6 mph.
I drafted a Firebird from Kentucky all the way to Mississippi once. My
old Karman Ghia was good for 90, but I got 95 behind that Firebird.
Gas was .35 a gallon, so we drafted for speed in those days, not
Bob, I had a Honda 90 also.....loved that ugly thing. Mine was the Trail 90,
and had the two speed transfer case....4 speeds hi and 4 speeds low
range....top mph in 1 low must have 6 mph, but could pull a tank with enough
traction! I once dumped the bike of a 30' cliff...when I made my way around
to the rock heap at the bottom, there she was on her side-happily idling
away, waiting to resume!.....but boy, I hated being tailgated in traffic on
that bike- no way to speed away.
'drafting a semi'????? The last time I did that was on a motorcycle when I
was young and foolish. :o) A looooong time ago. That truck sucked me
along with my throttle closed. Pretty friggin scary.....
Well, you don't have to be within 5 feet to get a lot of benefit! I can
stay several car lengths back and still see measurable change in a car
with an instantaneous MPG display.
I definitely would not recommend getting so close that it sucks you in!
Reminds me of when I was 16...driving a car that 16 year olds can afford,
I'm on a 2 lane hi-way doing 65 when a semi going the other way goes by so
FAST the suction from the draft blew my hood up and onto the windshield,
couldn't see a thing, big ditch to my right, other lane to my left. I just
looked out the window at the road and stopped as fast as I could. AHHHH! the
good ol' days.
Nope, none to be had. And it only has one trip meter. Many cars have two. I
find that handy as I use one between fill-ups, the other I use for trips, or
segments thereof. With all of the available electronics out there today,
you'd think it would be pennies to have those features added.
I used the instant readout to compare mpg at different speeds over the same
stretch of road. Yes, at 70 you do burn more than at 55, except it is
unsafe to drive 55 on the highway.
I see it just the opposite. Instantaneous MPG is very useful and lets
you see instantly the affect of different driving techniques, different
speeds, etc. Average MPG is worthless as I get that for free every time
I fill the tank.
It can also be a diagnostic tool. I travel the same stretch of road every
day at the same speed on cruise control. If I was to see the mpg reading a
lot lower than normal, I'd check out the car for potential problems.
It can help save gas by making the driver aware of differences in fuel use
at different speeds and gears. Yes, 50% of the time it is entertainment, but
there is a practical side too.
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