Happy 2013, 'Stang Fanatics!
I tested a 2013 Mustang V6 Premium not so long ago and came up with some interesting MPG results. After taking a look at the specs, I began working on the theory that specific option packages can have a direct impact on fuel economy. These changes are not reflected on 'official' EPA mileage ratings shown on the window sticker ...
Here's the review video: 2013 Ford Mustang V6 Premium Review : MPGomatic - YouTube
... and the Full Review: 2013 Ford Mustang V6 Premium Review | MPGomatic
My big goal for 2013 is to work the reverse of this. With luck, I'll have something to share in a few weeks ...
I have not had a chance to watch the posted video yet. On the current tank, the computer is predicting right around 13 MPG on my 2011 Mustang GT automatic. My Mustang has been parked for winter since the middle of November, so that probably justifies the lower than EPA estimated mileage on this tank.
I think that asking whether option packages affect mileage might be asking the wrong question. Through the first 26,055.3 miles, my 2011 Mustang GT automatic averaged 27.0721 miles per (U.S.) gallon. Did it hit the EPA estimated highway mileage? Well not exactly, it is rated at 18 city and 25 highway. Did the option packages affect the mileage? Yes, but not exactly. The 18 inch polished aluminum wheels improved the appearance of the car, the scream of the 5.0 under hard acceleration, and the navigation system helped to keep me from getting lost; all three contributed to the car being driven must more frequently than required, and for longer periods of time, thus reducing the effects of cold engine starts on the fuel mileage.
I think that looking at driving habits may yield more usable data. I posted the following in June, after averaging 31.3869 MPG on a 3,123 mile cruise in the Mustang:
Here is what I try to do:
* Do not spend a lot of time warming up the car if the first half mile to a mile of the drive is under 30 MPH (this might be bad for the engine, but it is what I do).
* If I expect to sit at a railroad crossing for a couple of minutes, I shut off the engine. I also avoid taking the car through drive-throughs.
* Avoid sitting at stop lights as best as possible. If the light is turning red ahead, tap the brakes a couple of times to let the car behind know that you are slowing, then use engine braking to slow the car – if you can keep the car rolling until the light turns green, it will take less fuel to get back up to speed. Some cities have timed the stop lights so that if you leave one light at a normal pace and obey the speed limit, the next light will turn green just as your car starts to approach the light.
* Leave a good size gap between your car and the car in front – if the car in front slows or stops, use engine braking to slow your car, in the process consuming the good sized gap.
* The speed limit signs are not just on the roads to support government budgets, drive the speed limit when possible.
* Fill up at good quality gas stations with premium. Locally, I used the Phillips 66 92 octane because I found that gas from that station yielded better fuel mileage than the other stations (one of the local Marathon stations have stickers on their pumps stating that the fuel may contain up to 10% ethanol, while the Phillips 66 station pumps do not have a similar sticker). When I am on a long cruise, I typically try to fill up at Marathon stations with 93 octane (some of the station’s pumps had the 10% ethanol sticker, while others did not - I am pretty sure that I achieved 31+ regardless of whether or not the stickers were present at the station). If I could not find a Marathon station, I searched for a Shell station. On one fill up I had to use Exxon gas, which yielded the lowest gas mileage (but that drop in mileage could have been due to the terrain).
* If you are hearing a rumble from the stock mufflers, you are wasting fuel (or if the radar detector flies off the dash, that is also a sign that you are wasting fuel). That probably means that you need to shift before hitting 2,000 RPM. I try to perform 5 or 6 hard accelerations per tank of fuel – it is a performance car after all, but I am not sure if this helps or hurts fuel efficiency in the long run.
* Keep the tires aired to 35 psi.
* Keep road rage to a minimum – passing a farm tractor at 80 MPH to prove a point is excessive, but sometimes necessary.
For the record, the above tips did not work too well on my 2004 F-150 4x4 that averaged 13.71 miles for gallon between June 2011 and June 2012. That 5.4 liter engine with 3.73 gears likes to drink fuel, and it did not help that the truck had one or more brakes dragging to various degrees. My 2013 F-150 4x4 (and AWD option) with 3.73 gears and the 5.0 responds much like my Mustang, just with less throttle lag and less engine braking. I was quite surprised to see the overly optimistic MPG readout on the F-150 claiming to be getting 20.9 MPG roughly 59 miles into the second tank of fuel (87 octane). The readout showed 19.8 MPG yesterday on a roughly 95 mile round trip with 2 cold starts in 29 degree (F) weather. That 5.0 is one remarkable engine design.
I think that I have drifted a bit off topic. Yes, the option packages might make a difference in average MPG: nice looking rims and navigation might increase MPG, and the AWD option (aka F-150 Lariat) apparently hurts MPG.
Attached is my running MPG chart for the Mustang, and a cell phone capture of the 2013 F-150 claiming to hit 20.9 MPG.