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Old 03-04-2013, 07:25 PM   #1
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Saturn MPG update

So I joined this forum a few weeks back. At the time The best mpg I was able to obtain out of my 97 SL2 dual over-head cam was around 32 mpg highway and 28-29 combined. So i found this forum and scoured through the threads for 3 or 4 nights trying to take in everything I could on inexpensive ways to up my fuel economy.

And now I am proud to say, just by adding in some simple (free) methods I learned just from this forum, I am now getting a combined (city/hwy) 36 mpg. I was simply amazed! I have done three calculations since: 35.5, 35.9 and this last time 36.3.

And all i really did was up my tire pressure some more, reduce my cruising speed to a max of 60 mph when possible, applying P&G when it is appropriate (not much though), shutting down the engine and coasting into spots and my driveway, and timing lights to avoid complete stops when possible.

Now I'm hoping to get close to 40's or even break that barrier when I add my HAI and grill block. Thanks to this forum for this incredible savings!
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Old 03-05-2013, 03:29 AM   #2
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Great job. You can definitely reach your goal. If the modifications don't do it, further refinement of your driving style will.
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Old 03-05-2013, 04:16 AM   #3
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Im just getting started with my saturn dohc sc2. Its an autotragic though but my baseline is already looking to be 35mpg in stock form. Im thinking wiht a tune up and some nice weather i could be looking at 40mpg before i even start tinkering.
Im not sure ill be doing a full blown hai. I tried it on my sl1 and it robbed so much power it was almost dangerous. A wai intake was much easier to cope with unless it was really hot out to begin with.
Im also not sure i can play with tire pressures to much. The car came with new snow tires and im not sure how much presure they can take. they are very soft too. Im sure i have a few mpg hiding in a tire change but thats alot of coin i dont want to spend on it.

You should start a gas log on here too. Not only is it great to see your mpg steadily climb but it can help out others researching mods for their car as well.
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Old 03-05-2013, 05:40 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kit352 View Post
Im also not sure i can play with tire pressures to much. The car came with new snow tires and im not sure how much presure they can take. they are very soft too. Im sure i have a few mpg hiding in a tire change but thats alot of coin i dont want to spend on it.
There's no need to worry about the tire failing from the reasonable kind of overinflation we discuss here. I advise against exceeding the tire's maximum inflation rating (liability, handling, and wear), but it is always safe to go far beyond it. (What is unsafe is going too far below what a load-inflation chart says you need, which is generally what you'll find marked on your car.) Of course there are issues of excessive center wear (a moderate amount is fine; look up why motorcycle tires don't really need much tread to channel water and you'll understand; see also tires with a solid centerline tread) and bad handling (which you figure out immediately after trying a new pressure), but you can detect those and back it off a bit.

As for spending money: Do you intend to keep the car for enough miles to wear out your current set and another set of tires? If so, invest in the other tires now, and invest in some wheels from a junkyard or craigslist. Winter tires wear out fast in the summer, so on that principle alone, switching them out when winter is over will save enough money to pay for the wheels. Additionally, winter tires too worn to use in winter still have plenty of tread to use in summer, so with two sets of wheels it's easy to keep two sets of winter tires and discard the most worn set when it's time to buy new tires for snow season.
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Old 03-23-2013, 05:18 AM   #5
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I have a 95 SL2 manual trans. If I keep it at 50 mph and some coasting it will do 50 mpg pretty easy. On the freeway that can be a little dangerous, so when I go on a trip I always try to take the backroads. If you use highways instead of interstate you have a lower posted speed limit and sometimes will be a more direct route. I put an OBX heder, full 2" exhaust and a full race muffler on it before i ever drove it on the highway so i dont have any before numbers to say how much that helped. The saturn SC SL SW "2"s are quite low geared as apposed to the "1"s. Eg. 95 SL2 2000rpm=50mph 95 SW1 2000 rpm=58 mph. They did increase the gear ratios later, (your 97 may be a little higher). What im saying is if you are driving it 75 the engine is aroung 3000 rpm not to mention the increased 50% air resistance. My SW1 gets 48 mpg pretty consistantly at 60-65mph, so alot of it is rpm. The SW1also has 24 less hp. Another thing I did on my SL2 is I put the higher 5th gears out of a 95 SL1 in it. But that makes a big gear gap between 4th and 5th. Its a pretty easy swap if you are mechanicaly inclined, but i think swapping the whole trans out of a "1" would be more user-friendly, but a lot more work.
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Old 10-15-2013, 09:04 AM   #6
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I got 34.7 on my 99 SL auto on my first full fill up, looking to hit 40 if possible.
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