• Dec 12th 2006 at 11:52AM
  • 36
For the first time in more than 20 years, the US Government is changing the way they calculate the estimated fuel mileage on window stickers. The changes will be seen starting with 2008 model year cars in the form of a newly styled window sticker and a new test procedure to better reflect the actual mileage customers can hope to achieve.

The test procedure is being changed for a lot of reasons, but mainly it's because the government has realized that people don't drive much like the computer model used in today's testing.

They are going to adjust the procedure to reflect our higher freeway speeds, the fact that people tend to accelerate much harder than the computer, our constant use of air conditioning and the effects of adverse-weather driving. We can only guess that most estimates will go down somewhat in this new formula. And we are not alone.

Scared at the possible backlash when their vehicles appear to be getting poorer mileage, major carmakers have banded together to create a website, www.mileagewillvary.com, to help educate consumers about the apparent drop in fuel economy.

Consumers tend to be pretty savvy and at times ignore the estimates altogether, so we expect most people will adapt pretty quickly. One area that may be a concern, however, is the CAFE requirements, which may or may not be altered to reflect the new measuring procedures.

[Source: Automotive News, sub req]

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      DCWF - Good Point.

      Automakers have been tweaking gear ratios to optimize vehicles for the best mileage according to the old city/highway driving models whether or not that had a benefit to real world fuel economy. With the new system, automakers will most likely adjust designs to score better numbers on this more realistic test and actual observed fuel economy should increase (in the next development cycle).
      • 8 Years Ago
      Don't coast with the engine off or in neutral, or holding the clutch in, that is stupid and illegal.

      Coast in 6th gear, GM has EGR in the LS2 in the GTO. and in overrun the fuel injection does not inject.

      • 8 Years Ago
      If you are going to 'pulse&glide', do it right.
      What gear is the most efficient in the transmission? 4th because the power doesn't flow via gear meshes. 1,2,3,5,6 all have two and R has three.
      So 4th is your 'pulse' gear
      and then 6th is your glide gear.

      So try it around 75, 50-100mph, and compare that to the steady state mileage at 75 in 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th gear.
      • 8 Years Ago
      More honesty in government, especially during the Bush administration... amazing.
      • 8 Years Ago
      There is a 412-page report from EPA FuelEconomy site that describes the above in full detail. I printed out the first 76 or so pages that have most of the tech info and many useful scatter plots and tables comparing the various methods.

      This is a long overdue correction. The OLD EPA MPG rules used laughable assumptions, that overwhelmingly favored Hybrids. The speeds specified were HALF or a THIRD of what people actually are doing. They assumed no.. A/C and no cold weather operation in winter, which is a HUGELY UNFAIR assumption making the hybrids look good again, and undeservedly so.

      The new rules will drop hybrid economy by 30%, thus bringing the MPG estimates much closer to REAL LIFE, OBSERVED MPG which is typically 44 and not 60 mpg for the PRIUS, which is the most efficient Hybrid (with the exception of the insignificant, 2-seat, science project Honda Insight)
      • 8 Years Ago
      My 05 GTO is rated 17/25 mpg in city/highway with the six speed, so by paying the $695 for the manual transmission I saved the $1,300 gas guzzler tax.

      Now my real world results, like other here are a bit lower than what is estimated. In purely city driving I average in the neighborhood of 13.5 to 14.5 mpg and between 23 and 25 mpg on the high way. The best I ever did was on the interstate late at night using the "pulse and coast" method. At 60 mph I drop to 3rd gear, floor it to 90, coast back to 60 and repeat. The display on the dash read 34 mpg at the end of that trip, not very practical for everyday driving, but not bad for 6 liter V8.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Good call on the Crown Vic. For some reason I thought it was sub-20 mpg on the highway.

      Anyway, having worked for the government and seeing what pushovers they really are. Any car that was not a gas-guzzler in the old system will probably be 'grandfathered' in the new system as not a gas-guzzler. (See medicare Physician reimbursments)
      • 8 Years Ago
      #32 Ummmmmmm. I don't know how to put it, but who's the "brains" behind this "pump and coast" idea?????? This is toooooo funny! I don't know what your back ground is, but I can tell you that the "pump and coast" method is NOT, I repeat, NOT going to increase your fuel economy - irrespective of what your erroneous on-board computer is telling you!

      It would probably be a total waste of time for me to try and explain it to you why this does not work. You just wouldn't get it!

      Your statement is so idiotic that I don't know if I should laugh or cry!
      • 8 Years Ago
      The comparison is a very detailed one and not a fuinction of the car's weight. I believe you were thinking of the new CLASSES of vehicles that is according to weight, so youc an compare similar designs.

      THe Crown Victoria is a very fuel efficient car, gewtting routinely 30 MPG on real Highway trips fully loaded, it is not a StupidUglyVehicle. Despite the fact that it has 70s tech and design. A v8 pulling 4,000 lbs (5,000 loaded) on a flat road at low RPM can be very efficient.

      The corvette will NOT be penalized, since its very efficient GESRBOX with the 6 speed manual has a top gear of 0.5 ratio, that allows it to actgually get 28 MPG highway if driven at the speed limit.

      The ones that will suffer are mainly HYBRIDS and hopefully SUVS too.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I Bought a NEW 2006 Hyundai Elantra Hatchback with Automatic Trans ,, on November 15 2006 and the Salesman told me that I would get 27 MPG around town and 36 MPG on the Freeway .

      I am LUCKY !! if I get "" 20 to 21 MPG "" combined Freeway and around town and I drive at least 55% FREEWAY ! Miles every day .

      Also the Passenger Air Bag Sensor will ONLY WORK correctly if my Passenger is above 120 pounds and my wife weighs only 86 Lbs. So if we ever have an Accident I do NOT believe her Air Bags will work .

      But the Salesman SAID !! passenger Air Bags are set to work with any passenger over 55 Lbs.

      And Hyundai Can NOT !! Fix the problems and they do NOT care .

      Check out this Web site for the TRUTH about a Car or Truck BEFORE !! you Buy .


      I found that Info AFTER I bought the Dam HYUNDAI !!

      There should be a LAW !! to make Dealers REFUND your $$$ if they have LIED !! to you .

      I guess you should NEVER believe the New Car Ads on TV any more .. I am PISSED OFF !!!!!!
      • 8 Years Ago
      Mike M.

      Thanks for the comment, but you'd be surprised what I am capable of understanding. So why don't you explain it - if you think you can.

      I wonder how much gas my car uses per minute why idling? I suppose not much at all. Now I wonder how much gas my car is using per minuet while in neutral at 90 mph? Guess what, it is the same. So using very little gas per minute at 90 mph can't possible increase my fuel economy enough to compensate for the extra fuel I used to accelerate from 60 to 90, especially since it takes the GTO a hell of a lot longer to coast from 90 to 60 as it does to accelerate from 60 to 90 (that is the beauty of 400 hp). That just can't possibly be the case since my on board computer has to be wrong. ... Give me a break, Einstein.

      Sorry to hear that you are not familiar with the pulse and glide technique. But I guess if you have not heard of it, it must not exist, lol.

      Maybe if you google it the idea will miraculously pop into existence.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I don't think this will make any difference in people's decision to buy a car. Aka my dumass ex-wife and her new fiance (a prick) bought a Ford Expedition last month. They didn't tell me, I just drove by to see what was going on.
    • Load More Comments