This is my first post, though I've been lurking for quite some time...
Don't loose heart on the ability of your SUV to attain better gas mileage. I am currently rebuilding a '96 Nissan Pathfinder which I intend to get 30 MPG in once complete. This mileage won't be the result of engine-off coasting, and the truck in question will be driven in a 40k mile expedition across the US, Canada, Alaska, and Central America.
Many of the modifications I'm in the middle of are not off the shelf items. Some of the technology can only be considered "Fringe" at this point, though testing has proved that all revisions will be highly beneficial toward fuel efficiency.
I don't know how mechanically inclined you are, but there are a number of things you can do which will help your situation. Some will cost some money, others won't. If you want to keep the truck and want to get better mileage, than you're going to have to spend some money....
#1 - Toyota Landcruisers are most often shift on the fly 4WD. This means your front hubs are always "locked" into the front differential and transfer case. A set of manual hubs can be used to replace your full time units. These are the ones that have the knob at each wheel that are turned "on" or "off". The nice thing about this is that in the summer, and when its dry in the winter, you can unlock the wheels and significantly reduce the rolling resistance of your vehicle. When there is snow, lock the hubs up, and run in either 4WD, or 2WD....running in 2WD with the hubs locked in will be just like running in 2WD without the locking hub option. This will improve your mileage significantly, and will probably cost $250-300 to have a set installed at a shop.
#2 - Electric cooling fan. The cooling fan in SUV's are huge and drain up to 15hp from the engine....this is 15hp (12kW, 40950 btu/hr) worth of gas usage. You can replace the mechanical fan with an electric unit which can be controlled by a thermoelectric switch, and also a piggy-back relay for the A/C. The fan will only come on when needed instead of being a constant drain on the system.
#3 - Change your tires. Anything aggressive will eat your gas mileage right up. Look for a tire with a 40psi+ max tire inflation and something with a hard rubber compound....typically a tire advertised as a high mileage tire (wear-wise) will be hard. Don't stray far from the stock recommended tire size either...
#4 - If the motor wasn't quite as high with the mileage, synthetic oil would be a must-do. However...207k miles is a little too elderly to be starting that regimen.
#5 - Get those injectors cleaned. I'm not talking about the stuff you put in the tank...have the injectors removed and ultrasonically cleaned by a professional shop. With that many miles on the engine, your spray pattern is undoubtedly off a bit...the more you can atomize the fuel, the better you'll be.
Unfortunately, all of these mods won't get you up to 30 MPG. Modern engine management (OBD1 qualifies for this) has built-in controls to maintain predetermined air-fuel ratios. You can make the engine work less to maintain a set A/F ratio, but you won't get any mileage miracles until you revise the parameters which the management is using to run the engine. There are various methods for doing this....some involve having the computer reprogrammed, others involve piggy-back systems, and oxygen sensor interrupters. If you want REALLY good mileage, you'll need to utilize one of these systems. Once you have one, the mixture can be leaned out (the biggest gas savings), and you can use water mist injection to control the otherwise resulting detonation.
Don't let people tell you that the truck is always going to be a pig. Yes...we need to work harder to get our SUV's green, but it can be done.
I was pulling 15-16 in the city with my car before finding this site. Last tank was 30. I believe that any car can have significant gains in MPG.
Safety should be primary on your concern list, with that said power steering may not be a big deal when the vehicle is rolling at 30-40MPH. Would need to be tested in a safe area by the person who will be driving to determine agility without the engine running.
That VW looks like a fun car!
Originally Posted by MorningGaser
Get rid of that guzzler...don't even try to hypermilage it...it's like putting lipstick on a pig, seriously.
If you can swing it financially, get a new or near new small car.
I don't want to start a big argument, but according to my last gas tank my car gets 68 percent of the mileage your car gets, weighs almost twice as much, cost 4000 dollars, and is a classic to boot.
As much as I love the Yaris (most attractive I saw at the state fair) when put up against my car at 10,000 miles a year it would take 30 years for a yaris to break even in cost of ownership. Granted that is all other things equal, I am sure that in 30 years there will be more maintenance on my car than yours. But even if I spent another 4000 over the 30 years it would cut it down to 17 years before breaking even.
Unless I am missing something. Please let me know if I am.
Unless I am missing something. Please let me know if I am.
Yes, you are missing something, driving the yaris the same way your driving your "classic" EOC, style you would be getting 50 ? or better mpg in the yaris?
so there would still be a significant difference in mpg.
You are doing a great job with your classic though
ELF, you are right. I would get more like 60 in a yaris if I drove it like I do my current car. Which would put my 8000 dollar car (including repairs down the road) at being caught up with price wise in 8 years. It would be a nicer ride in a Yaris .
I want one of those junkers that will pay for itself in 7k miles! My numbers show a difference of 599 dollars per 10,000 miles from 30MPG to 60. That is with gas at $4 a us gallon.
My previous calculations were at $2.83 a gallon of gas. Which is not very accurate considering summer is just now getting here. I moved my spreadsheet numbers to 4 dollars per gallon for these calculations.
Need more info on the vehicle.
I assume it is an FJ80 series in which case you're lumbered, and I really do mean lumbered, with the 3F gasoline engine and constant 4wd, not sure if you guys got the manual.
The biggest improvement will be seen with a replacement engine. IF you can legally go diesel I would recommend the current 4.2 24 valve intercooled turbo diesel, or better still the new 4.7 V8 turbo diesel. With an eye on budget, and alot easier, I would swap in something like an LT1 Chevy small block. More power, lighter engine and much better on fuel. A pretty common swap here actually.
Project Charade aim:
Keep it alive to the end of the year .