Ben have a nosy at What cars research, they've been conducting "real World" MPG figures for 4 years, during testing, sensors record the road speed, exhaust manifold pressure and throttle position throughout the test, while other equipment measures the altitude, humidity and air pressure. All of these variables must be considered before they can calculate a car’s True MPG.
Most of the cars tested do anywhere between 55-70 MPG, I've compared a few examples to some of my own, and others on fuelly and they seem spot on.
I could probably do 80 MPG in a Prius, maybe more. The FEH is a stubborn bastard to hypermile. To get over the EPA ratings you have to work for it. A Prius is an easier vehicle to hypermile, and I've had a lot of road time on trips sponsored by the OEM's where we were tasked with obtaining the highest economy possible.
As for What Car, though they haven't run a "Real MPG" special on the Prius, they have a 62.5 mpg from it in a review. In the same comparison, the diesel Mazda 3 got just 53.6 mpg. The Petrol 3 cyl 1 litre Golf that was the 3rd car in that test only got 51.8.
As these are 3 cars tested together for an article, I imagine the routes and driving conditions give a much better true mpg comparison between the 3 fuel/engine types.
It is my personal opinion (though not What Cars!) that the Prius is a bigger vehicle than the Golf and the Mazda 3, I would have put it up a class size.
Heh, younger brother by six years beat me. On the way back from a gas fuel-up (reset upon fill-up), he reached 40 MPG (48 MPG UK) in our 2015 CR-V AWD without paying much attention to it, all on suburban roads. This thing is like a diesel SUV!
I think it has a sweet spot for these kind of roads. I imagine it'll do mid 30s at best on Interstates.
pic for proof:
Edit: For comparison, when I filled up my BMW in my sig using the same route, the absolute best I averaged was 28 MPG (33.6 MPG UK), partly because I was stuck behind a slow Camry for the longest straight section.
When we fill our CR-V, for the 50 or so miles afterwards it can be showing MPG in the mid to high 50s.
It then settles down - averaging 41 MPG (Imp.) over the lifetime.
Trip computer results for short journeys can show some pretty wild results!
Yep, I filled mine up a few days ago, getting close to 80 MPG apparently lol. If you fill right up, the car struggles to detect how much fuel has been used as there's so much in there. Like Ben days, the longer you drive, the more accurate it becomes and it will settle down.
Just to add a data point to the conversation, I drove from Ontario Canada to Florida over the past 2 days in my 2015 Q5 3.0 TDI (diesel), in 85'F to 96'F temp (A/C always on), me and 1 other passenger and about 50 lbs of luggage. We got 5.12 L/100km (= 45.96 US MPG = 55.2 Imp MPG). I feel that's very respectable, especially considering it has AWD, and it's an SUV!
Another factor to consider is not just the MPG, but rather, the cost per mile. Since I got my car in late May 2015, the price of diesel at the pump has been consistently lower than regular gas. If I had bought a gasoline (petrol) powered SUV, I'd have to buy premium gas. I've run a spreadsheet since day 1 that records actual diesel fuel economy, actual diesel fuel prices, actual gasoline fuel economy (using Fuelly's best gasoline Q5 numbers), and actual premium gas prices, and according to my calculations, I've saved 1/3 in fuel cost per mile! Yes, I paid a hefty premium for my diesel engine option (CAD$5,000), but my calculations tell me that somewhere between 3 and 4 years of driving, I will have saved enough in fuel costs to pay off the diesel engine premium, and after that, it's saving me money. I kept my last car for 18 years, so if that trend continues, this vehicle will save me a bundle in fuel costs over its lifetime.
As for the usefulness of AWD, this is my first Audi, first SUV, first diesel, and first AWD, and I'd never want to go back! When I combine Audi's "legendary" Quattro AWD with the raised height of an SUV (8" ground clearance), plus good snow tires (of course), I get performance in snow like nothing I've had before, and I've enjoyed good FWD and RWD cars (including BMWs). Last winter I had several opportunities to really try out Quattro, and it performed supremely, even over foot-and-a-half snow banks coming off a side street to an over-ploughed main artery. Say what you will about the greatness of FWD, but when you have 4 wheels driving instead of just 2, and 0 wheels dragging instead of 2, it makes a huge positive difference! I've been out in weather when the news is telling people to avoid travel due to snow, and my Q5 was sure-footed, grippy, and confidence-inspiring.
2015 Audi Q5 "Progressiv" + S-Line + Scuba Blue, 3.0L V6 TDI
(Highest fuel economy for all Audi Q5s on Fuelly!)