The 2008 Mileage Challenge: Part 2


Yesterday, we detailed our scheme to document the real-world mileage of four 2008 models — a Nissan Rogue, Subaru Impreza, Dodge Grand Caravan and Hyundai Sonata. All the cars except the Rogue had trip computers with mileage readouts, so we were able to easily track our mileage along the way. The results are in:

MMS ID 65042 (created by CM Utility) automatic-content-migration

We certainly didn’t plan to sip fuel. Driving solo with properly inflated tires is hardly out of the norm — or at least for the tires part, it shouldn’t be. On the whole, we stomped on the gas, cranked the A/C and passed slow-moving Buicks as much as any average Joe would.

MMS ID 65047 (created by CM Utility) automatic-content-migration

Our little journey suggests that the EPA’s latest numbers — at least the highway ones — can be easily attainable. With the pre-2008 figures, you really had to drive conservatively to match the estimates. (The Rogue, WRX and Grand Caravan were redesigned this year, leaving no pre-’08 figures for comparison, but in 2007, a mechanically identical Sonata would have been rated at 24/33 mpg.) With the agency’s new figures, you can drive like you normally would and expect to achieve the ratings, which of course is the idea behind the EPA estimates. For regular drivers, these numbers seem much more usable, and helpful, than previous pie-in-the-sky figures.

Check back tomorrow for a few more thoughts about the Challenge in our final post.

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Former Assistant Managing Editor-News Kelsey Mays likes quality, reliability, safety and practicality. But he also likes a fair price. Email Kelsey Mays

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