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The Race to 50 (Prius Update)

When the weather is cold, the Prius performs much worse (relatively) than it does when it’s warm. It makes sense with the need to run the engine to heat the car, but it’s disheartening to someone like me that watches the mileage.

I filled up the Prius the other day in town and immediately headed home. Since I’m climbing uphill, immediately I ended up getting home with a 42mpg average for the 10 miles. Still good, but not great. I was careful for a couple days, but it was cold, so I only managed to get to 45,8mpg as the average.

When we left for baseball practice, I was careful and we got to practice, a good downbill fall of 5-600 ft across 20 miles with 49.1mpg average. We made it back around 48.6, and since then we’ve managed to creep around, getting to karate, the store, etc. and we made it to 49.9, but down we’re down to 49.3 at about 320 miles for this tank.

I’m determined to get to 50mpg as an average with the warmer weather, and I think I will when we head to scouts tonight.

The Voice of the DBA

Steve Jones is the editor of SQLServerCentral.com and visits a wide variety of data related topics in his daily editorial. Steve has spent years working as a DBA and general purpose Windows administrator, primarily working with SQL Server since it was ported from Sybase in 1990. You can follow Steve on Twitter at twitter.com/way0utwest


Posted by shoeb on 25 February 2009

Sir please tell me How we will add column at run time in table

Posted by Steve Jones on 25 February 2009

Please don't post questions unrelated to blogs. You can post at www.sqlservercentral.com/forums

Posted by Lynn Pettis on 25 February 2009

Here is something to think about.  You have a Prius that is getting close to 50 MPG.  I drove a Ford Festiva for about 3+ years (141,000+ miles) with a conventional engine that got 50 MPG.  I also drove a Honda Civic, again a conventional engine, for 2 years (80,000+ miles) and it also got 50 MPG.

What's so great about the hybrids?  They have had cars that got just a s good milage as the hybrids now.  Now, if they really lived up to their hype, and increased MPG significantly (oh, like 80 to 100 MPG), then I'd start looking at them more.  Yes, the car I drive now does get as good as the two I mentioned above, but then getting 30 MPG for me right now is still good.

Posted by GSquared on 25 February 2009

My wife's 10-year-old Mazda Protege gets 47 mpg highway.  Only gets about 26 city though, and that's most of what we drive.  Hybrids generally get better city than that, because of dynamic braking.

Lynn, are you talking city or highway?

Posted by Lynn Pettis on 25 February 2009

At the time I was driving the Ford and Honda, I was commuting between Colorado Springs and Denver.  I was driving 900 miles/wk for 3.5 years, then 680 mile/wk for another 11.5 years.  That is average, by the way, and didn't include any extra driving I may have done at work (to/from lunch) or on weekends.

So, yes, mostly highway.

Posted by Steve Jones on 25 February 2009

Compared to today's cars, the hybrids do well. I'm not sure why we don't have more cars like the Protege or Festiva now.

I'd be curious to compare size as well. Those cars hold 5 people easily + trunk space?

Posted by Kit G on 25 February 2009

I have a 1999 Protege LX with only 66000 miles on it (yeah, really short commutes).  I got about 30 MPG when I was doing a combination of city and highway and one time got 45 highway (straight highway) when the car was loaded with stuff!  (Returning to Houston from running away to Dallas because of Hurricare Rita).  Now, with almost purely city driving, I'm down around 23-25.  Car holds 5 people plus a good sized trunk, 6 cylinder, 1.6L engine.

If you built my 1999 Protege to today's standards, it would probably get less gas mileage because of the additional safety features that would be needed (side air bags for one) which means more weight.  More weight = more gas = lower mileage.

Posted by Lynn Pettis on 25 February 2009

The Festiva and Civic were both hatchbacks.  Okay trunck space, sat 5.  Both were also 4 cylinder, 5-speed manual transmissions.

The Festive was a trooper.  Had 141,000 miles before getting totaled in an accident during a snow storm in December '93.  Went 35,000 miles without complaining about an oil change, first mechanical work was done at 101,000 miles when the right front toe-arm needed to be replaced, and i didn't change the original plugs, rotor, and distributor until 105,521 miles (car had dropped to about 40 MPG).

Civic was a good car too.  Protected me in two major accidents, the first when I was hit at 65+ mph while at a dead stop on I-25 just north of Lincoln Ave (south of County Line) and should have been totalled then but was repaired and protected me a year later when I blacked out on the way home just north of the USAFA and slammed the car into a ditch at 70 mph.  At the time of the second accident, the Civic had 80,000 miles on it.

Posted by bitbucket on 25 February 2009

Steve I'd like to see your mileage figures when you get a few miles on that Pirus.  Mine a 1990 Mercedes Diesel engine with super charger, auto transmisson and as of this afternoon 303,189 miles travelled.  In northern Ohio, city driving average 30 - 32 mpg.  Long highway run at speeds btween 60 - 75 averages 37 - 40 mpg  Let me know if the Pirus runs any place other than down hill with a push when it gets even close to 300,000 miles.  Oh and so far no major repair bills, oil change every 10,000 miles minor tuning adjustments typical bill $90 and that includes labor.  Which makes me want to compare total cost of ownership per mile travelled.

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