The Accord first rolled off a boat onto American shores in 1976 and earned a reputation for overall value and good gas mileage. The Accord grew quickly in popularity to become one of America’s best-selling cars. Honda’s legendary reputation for providing exceptional quality at a reasonable price took it to the top of the charts. The Accord’s fuel economy ratings have consistently been in line with expectations for a mid-sized family sedan. But like its older (yet smaller) brother the Civic, it’s grown quite a bit in size and weight over the years. Just how big? The Marysville, Ohio-built Accord is now classified as a large sedan. Is today’s Civic really larger than those early Accords? Time to get out the tape measure …
Entries Tagged 'gas mileage' ↓
Folks often ask me, “what’s the ‘greenest’ car?” This is one of my favorite questions, because it can spur deeper conversation. Some people are shocked when I reply that the ‘greenest’ car is a recycled car. “Wait a minute,” comes the typical response, “a used car … for real?”
They often expect that I would answer with “oh, a (insert the most common name here) hybrid or an electric car (like the one that’s caught the tech world’s fancy that real world folks can’t afford).” Truth be told, 40 mile per gallon (MPG) cars are nothing new. You can find a ten or fifteen year old Honda Civic HX or Volkswagen TDI on eBay that will get 40 MPG on the highway. The older VW Jetta, Golf, Passat, and Beetle TDIs can even run on 100 domestic renewable biodiesel. Vintage Mercedes-Benz diesels can run on biodiesel as well, and they can all be converted to run on recycled fryer grease. There are great bargains to be found on fuel-efficient Saturns, too …
Oh Lord, won’t you buy me an old fryer-grease-powered Mercedes-Benz. All my friends slobber over Teslas, I must make amends …
The Ain’t Fuelin’ project is radical in its simplicity. There are no batteries involved. The technological improvements aren’t glitzy. There’s little visible difference between a modified and unmodified vehicle … unless you know where to look. Most folks will never notice a bit of plastic protruding from a wheel well or a tire sidewall that differs from the original. Inquiring minds never think to check the dipstick in the quest to determine whether that fluid is conventional or synthetic. Folks never crawl under a car to gaze at its bellypan. A small aftermarket gauge nestled on the dashboard is easily overlooked by those more apt to be looking for a port to plug in their smartphone.
Improving fuel efficiency and reducing carbon emissions through mindful maintenance, simple bolt-ons and driving technique might not be glamorous or a flight of fancy, but it is common sense. If you could get better gas mileage and spend less at the service station every month, without making a major investment, why wouldn’t you do it?
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Thank you kindly for getting us to the starting line! The Kickstarter campaign for Ain’t Fuelin’ hit its funding mark last Friday and it’s taken me a week to recover and gather my thoughts about where it’s going. The three week campaign was a wild ride, and until the closing week, I was unsure whether it would fund. Locking down key sponsorships was crucial, but things didn’t start popping until the clock started ticking.
I’ve had this project on the back burner for more than three years. Over that time, I’ve had the good fortune to speak with a range of automotive professionals, from mechanics and race car drivers, through engineers and top-level executives. The premise of what we seek to prove is sound. The toughest part of this endeavor is producing compelling video on an extremely tight budget. Simply put, this has to be something that you want to watch and share with your friends.
Did you ever wonder what kind of gasoline that the EPA labs use when they test new cars to come up with the official gas mileage figures? I’ve been pondering this question for a while. I finally got off my duff and called the Oak Ridge National Laboratory to find out.
Here’s something you might not know.
When they test cars for their official fuel economy numbers – the numbers that go on the window stickers and on the EPA website – they don’t use E10 gasoline (i.e.: just about all the fuel we can buy on the street). They use something called “Certification Gasoline.” It’s E0. It contains no ethanol, whatsoever. None.
How can these be considered accurate tests when the federal government isn’t using the same fuel that we use. Granted that when the tests were devised, there was no ethanol in the gasoline, but that’s certainly not the case today.