I certainly hope that I can achieve a minimum of 50. I'm going to try everything that looks reasonable that doesn't involve major engine modifications. It runs too good for me to try doing anything that could possibly harm it.
Sounds like you're doing a lot of highway miles. Aero mods are relatively cheap and easy to do. I would make that a priority. Start with the grill block than belly pan.
And Matt, I was thinking that the engine size might hurt the mileage because it's a big engine for such small output, and the car weighs significantly more than the high gas mileage cars on here like the Metro or N600 meaning that I need to step on the gas pedal a little more to get up to speed. My logic is probably wrong on this though. The higher powered Accords from the same year also used 2.2L engines, so I'm thinking that this one is a less efficient version of the same motor. I don't know much about cars, though hopefully after tinkering with this one, I will.
In my experience, the size of the engine isn't as big a factor as you might think, unless you spend a lot of time idling. The bigger factors are of course driving technique, final-drive gearing, vehicle weight, rolling resistance, aero resistance, engine accessory losses, driveline losses, etc.
Also, if you spend that much time on the highway and yours is a lockup-type torque converter, the tranny may not be such a big factor either (final-drive notwithstanding). You may be the one to 'write the book' on the hypermiling driving technique with an automatic.
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one. - Albert Einstein
I definitely will. If I'm spending money on this (which I migth have to do), I may just wait until I can afford to drop a stick into it. In the mean time though, I'll see what the possibilities are of an AT. If I got 40 mpg out of an unmodified car that's only supposed to get 30, I think that some pretty good numbers can be seen before the switch.
I agree with zpiloto that aero mods are the way to go. Could you put some pictures of your car in here, that way we can all see which aero mods are possible and advisable. Have you considered narrower tyres, and which tyre pressure are you using?
I think so too. I have a few ideas, but I'm not sure about how I'm going to fix the rear of the car. Here's a pic of one nearly identical to mine.
I've removed the mudflaps on the front of the car and the front licence plate mount. A rear wheel skirt, belly pan, and front grille block are in line to be added, but any help on the rear of the car is appreciated.
what year of car is it?
2.2L engine that only puts out 125hp is most likely tuned at least to a point for economy as it seems like Honda was building 1.5L engines that put out close to 125hp around the same time.
getting a shop manual for your car and taking a looking at the wiring diagram, and comparing the wiring on the manual to the automatic should give you an idea on how hard a swap would be, as doing the rest of the swap might be as easy as getting all the parts, unbolting the old tranny/gear selector linkage, and bolting in the new tranny/shift linkage, but I would opt for waiting a few years then getting a car with a 5 speed.
Synthetic fluids, better tires, belly pan, grill block, make the car lighter, would be the order that I would start.
also, things like broken door handles can be replaced very easly, new and used ones should be avlible.
It's a '93. I think that the reason for it being a 2.2L while at the same time Honda was making a 1.6L with the same power is for the aditional torque. I think that it puts out something near 150 ft/lbs of torque.
Better tires are next on my list. My front ones are bald, so now I'm looking into some LRR tires for it.
Belly pan I'm planning on doing when I get the time to, but I'm nervous about the grille block. I was about to do a grille block when the car started overheating badly to the point where whenever I would drive below 30 it would be far into the red because the radiator was blocked with dirt from the dirt road that I had been travelling on becuase of where the last set I was working on was. After that scare, I'm a bit nervous about blocking it off.
Any ideas for a better back window? I think that it's at about 40 degrees right now, so I'm sure that it can be better.