How do Hybrid Vehicles Calculate Range? - Fuelly Forums

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Old 07-16-2018, 07:33 AM   #1
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Question How do Hybrid Vehicles Calculate Range?

I drive a 2018 Kia Niro LX with the Tech Package; I've put a little over 3,000 miles on it.

Can anyone provide insight as to how a hybrid vehicle calculates predicted range? The estimated range swings 20-30 miles up or down every fuel-up. It's been as high as an estimated 593 miles and as low as 530 miles.

Does this technique change based on the manufacturer? Is the technique the same in non-hybrid cars as well? It might be too general of a question, but maybe someone can point me in the right direction.

Thanks!

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Old 07-16-2018, 04:17 PM   #2
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I know my Ford Escape Hybrid uses the average fuel economy over the past ~500 miles to calculate range and to activate the low fuel light.
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Old 07-16-2018, 09:44 PM   #3
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Welcome. Normally range is estimated on the fuel up just completed. It knows the mpg you have just achieved and uses that to forecast the range from a full tank. Therefore, if you have had particularly hard miles on your last tankful it will estimate a lower range then if you had easy miles.
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Old 07-16-2018, 11:13 PM   #4
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Yea depends on your previous driving style. Drive carefully and you'll see it increase rapidly. It will also depend on ambient conditions, weather, temperature etc as a car will use more fuel in dark wet cold conditions. I've seen 2018 Nissan leafs with 124 mile range at 100% but I've also seen identical ones with 160+ miles at 100%. If you've been doing alot of highway miles, your range will be lower, as you won't be braking and using regen as often, hybrids generally bet better fuel economy in urban conditions where low speed and short distances are more suitable for EV miles.
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Old 07-17-2018, 04:22 AM   #5
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Ahh, that makes sense. I had a Ford Fusion that gave me an estimated MPG and it was always a different estimate every time I would fill up. I had to ask when I saw the trend happening with this car, too.
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Old 07-17-2018, 08:36 AM   #6
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As JockoT said, and it is the same with all cars that display such info. Except some might adjust the prediction before the next tank.
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Old 07-18-2018, 11:02 AM   #7
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Similarly, has anyone here experimented with the mileage difference between mixed and ethanol-free gas? There's a gas station near me that sells ethanol-free 87 octane gas for nearly a dollar more than mixed. I doubt it'll be worth it, but it'll be fun to see how many miles I get.
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Old 07-18-2018, 11:09 AM   #8
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I doubt there's a dollars worth of difference in mpg but it will be interesting. Keep us posted.
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Old 03-13-2019, 03:23 PM   #9
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Gas versus Gasohol in my experience

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Originally Posted by patrickhays2 View Post
Similarly, has anyone here experimented with the mileage difference between mixed and ethanol-free gas? There's a gas station near me that sells ethanol-free 87 octane gas for nearly a dollar more than mixed. I doubt it'll be worth it, but it'll be fun to see how many miles I get.
I currently drive a 2013 Lexus CT200h, essentially a Prius with a different body. Since I bought this vehicle there has not been any pure gas available in California due to AQMD regulations so I can't speak to the mileage increase in my hybrid. But I can say definitively that with my previous ICE 2000 Acura Integra that when CA switched to the summer blend gas with 10% ethanol that my mileage went down approximately 20%, same car, same commute, same driver, etc. I could literally tell on which tank the station switched to summer blend, or winter blend by my mileage. There just aren't enough BTU's in ethanol to run an ICE as efficiently as gasoline with its' higher BTU content.

I also own a 1983 Honda CR480R 2 stroke dirt bike that will not run on the ethanol gas, but if I get pure gasoline from my son who lives in Arizona or from a dedicated off highway vehicle store with authority to deal in small quantities of gasoline, it starts and runs like a champ. I have no idea about fuel economy differences as it doesn't have an odometer or trip meter but I can tell you without any doubt that even when I've managed to get it started on ethanol blended gas it runs like crap and stalls to the point that it is literally unrideable.
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