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Old 06-26-2007, 12:07 AM   #1
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1996 Lexus LS400 joins

Hi guys! Been lurking on this website for a couple days and decided to register. A lot of great info going around. I have a 1996 Lexus LS400 and have been looking to get better gas mileage out of it. It has 244,000 miles, so in addition to being a very heavy automatic RWD luxury vehicle, it's past the mileage point where most other cars get sent to the recycler. However, it does run relatively strong and smooth, and it looks good.

I've been playing around with getting better gas mileage through driving technique, and have been able to muster roughly 28mpg going up one way, and 29mpg coming back the other, according to the ScanGauge. This involves driving with a very light foot on the throttle, and averaging 54mph. Since the route involves a number of hills, I usually end up slowing down to about 48-50mph on the steepest uphill climbs, and when I come to the top I throw the car in neutral to get some speed back and coast along at relatively high MPG.

Doing the same route with the cruise control set at 70mph netted me 23mpg on the return leg, so I know that cruise control is bad news for fuel economy when hills are involved, at least with my car.

Beating the EPA estimate of 24mpg by 5mpg highway, I feel that this is as high as the car can go based off my driving abilities, in its current situation. I'm going to start aero modding the car and seeing if that will help. The car has a low drag coefficient of .28, so it has been somewhat tweaked by its designers. However, I'll end up being able to see if I can make it better. The bottom end of the car isn't perfect so a belly pan will go under there once I procure the proper materials and tools. Before that, I will also play around with a grille blockoff. I am kind of leery about the grille blockoff because the car does tend to run hot. The ScanGauge indicates water temperatures around 195 degrees when the car is fully warmed up, and sometimes it creeps past 204 degrees when it's extremely hot. I will have to poke around to find out what the design tolerances are for the car.

Anyway, sorry to bore you with this rambling, run-on introduction; I'm just here to learn and want to do my part to reduce my dependence on gasoline.

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Old 06-26-2007, 12:37 AM   #2
Join Date: May 2007
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Welcome to GasSavers! You have obviously been doing some looking around here and are trying out some of the tips . Sounds like you're off to a good start , you may surprise yourself with a few more mpg hidden away . Keep up the good efforts !

ps Love the avatar ! LOL

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Old 06-26-2007, 12:59 AM   #3
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Welcome to the site! You people sure are up crazy late over there!

Hopefully you'll be able to push that envelope a bit more,
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Old 06-26-2007, 04:13 AM   #4
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Great avatar .

The LS400 deserves respect for the effort that went into its aerodynamics.
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Old 06-26-2007, 09:12 AM   #5
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Nice ride...

It looks like you've done your homework on what works. I look forward to your results

If you have any questions, any one of us is here to help

Best FE,

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Old 06-26-2007, 11:00 AM   #6
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Wow, I wonder why Toyota is now the #1 maker in the world? I just don't get it!

Great car, though. http://www.lexls.com/
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Old 06-26-2007, 03:53 PM   #7
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Welcome! I wouldn't worry too much about the heat, My sable goes up to 210/215 all the time in the summer, but then the fans turn on and temp drops back to around 200. My car seems to get best FE at around 200f.
Keep an eye on the temps, and you can always crank the heater to cool it, if you think its getting to hot.

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