New Prius v (lowercase v for the Prius v wagon) - terrible MPG

Discussion in 'Prius v Fuel Economy' started by Zaphod Beeblebrox, Apr 4, 2016.

  1. Zaphod Beeblebrox

    Zaphod Beeblebrox New Member

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    I need someone to talk me off the ledge. I'm about to go and return this car to the dealership. I've had it since last thursday and the odometer is reading like 160 miles. In that time my average MPG showing on the Trip odometer is 27.1 mpg. Dismal. I've been driving it very gingerly in the hopes of seeing those super high MPG numbers the Prius is known for and instead I'm getting sub 30. This seems totally crazy to me even for a car that according to the dealer is not yet "Broken In". Like am I really to expect more than a 40% reduction in the MPG until the car clocks a few thousand miles??

    Its been around freezing temps in Vermont since getting the car and I run the heat at like 78degrees. I make mostly short trips and mainly around town, just a few miles at a stretch usually. The Battery meter shows the battery one notch off of being full...I'm totally baffled. The dealership says to wait until I get a few thousand miles on it before I can expect to see better mileage and before they would start to think anything was amiss.

    I swear I'm not driving like a jerk, I accelerate gradually I probably don't push the accelerator more than half way down.

    My previous car for the last 7 years was a Mini Cooper Clubman and I saw 36mpg on that with all season tires and no less than 32 with winter tires. I would drive that like it was stolen with the heat on full blast all winter too and still no lower than 32mpg.

    Any ideas? Is this really normal operation?
     
  2. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    welcome! it sounds like your suffering from the temps and short trips. a hybrid is real only effective after the engine warms up. are you sure you were getting 32 in similar conditions?

    edit: a few things you can try, check your tyres pressure and try to consolidate your trips into one, starting at the furthest, and working your way back home. also, don't drive too gingerly, you don't want to run on electric. accelerate moderately to speed, then back off.

    how many miles per year do you drive? is the car in eco mode?
     
  3. Zaphod Beeblebrox

    Zaphod Beeblebrox New Member

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    100% sure I was getting 32mpg (often better) in the mini in similar and much worse conditions....i'm getting 27 presently.

    This is a work vehicle and I do house calls so 90% of my driving is short trips around town... I can't really do anything about the frequency and distance of my trips. It is in Eco mode.

    I usually do about 10k miles a year.
     
  4. Kramah313

    Kramah313 Active Member

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    Wait until the first tank that you fill up yourself before pressing the panic button. When I bought my Prius the trip reading was about 25 mpg. They must have had it idling at the dealer for hours or something. It has been 50+ every tank I have filled myself.
     
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  5. Blizzard_Persona

    Blizzard_Persona Senior Member

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    We have just under 9k miles on my (wife drives it mostly) 2014 v three and we have owned it just over a year. Our lifetime displayed (not calculated) mpg is 36.4 currently. You can subtract 5-7% from that for calculated mpg give or take. Her commute is only 9 miles with a bunch of lights and elevation changes.

    There are folks on here that somehow manage 50 mpg in a v which I have no idea how but I guess it's possible on a slow country road with no stop signs, etc..

    Either way, at the end of the month we have a road trip to South Carolina and guess what we are taking..... It's not the 12 Mpg Ram... Lol.
     
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  6. Zaphod Beeblebrox

    Zaphod Beeblebrox New Member

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    I reset the trip odometer many times daily as I track my mileage between jobs but I've been trying to keep the Trip2 odometer running and not reset it so I can track the MPG over a longer period. As I was sitting in the car (idling) just a little while ago entering my time and miles for the job i just completed I sat and watched my MPG drop from 25 to 22 over the course of 2 minutes. Maybe the idling is throwing the figure off.
     
  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    absolutely. reset the trip and take it for a good long drive under varied conditions and see how she does.
     
  8. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    (I can recommend TripLog for your mileage/time/location tracking, plugged into your USB port it can be fairly automatic!
    I use the business version Plans & Pricing For TRIPLOG Mileage Log Tracker App )

    Short Trips are tough on any non plug-in Hybrid, as is cold weather. That said, rural mail delivery folks can get 28 MPG and all they do is accelerate then decelerate. Can you drive a long trip (50 miles) to see if the car does way better then?
     
  9. rdgrimes

    rdgrimes Senior Member

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    1) A new car is expected to get lower MPG. RELAX, see what it's doing after 5000 miles.
    2) STOP obsessing over daily and trip averages. The only thing that matters is tank averages.
    3) Relax.
    4) Idling with the ICE running is VERY bad. Turning off the HVAC will sometimes solve that.
    5) Learn to drive a hybrid. Obviously this is your first.
    6) Did I mention to relax?
    7) Put it in ECO mode and leave it there.
     
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  10. Zaphod Beeblebrox

    Zaphod Beeblebrox New Member

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    You sound like the guy at the car dealership! ;-)

    OK so teach me to drive a hybrid... I didn't realize there were special instructions.
     
  11. alanclarkeau

    alanclarkeau Senior Member

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    Did you start with a full tank? Sometimes the trip computer doesn't work quite right with a part fill, which is likely what the dealership did.

    Check the tyres, then fill the tank (to first click), record the odometer, drive for at least ½ a tank. Then refill, preferably at same bowser and to first click. Manually calculate the MPG - [you can then compare it with the trip computer, and you'll know if it's reading optimistically or being a pessimist].
     
  12. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    bowser = gas pump.:p
     
  13. Zaphod Beeblebrox

    Zaphod Beeblebrox New Member

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    Thanks folks. I'll try it out and report back
     
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  14. rdgrimes

    rdgrimes Senior Member

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    That much is clear. Safe to say that if you drive it like a Mini, you'll get MPG like a Mini.
     
  15. Blizzard_Persona

    Blizzard_Persona Senior Member

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    It's actually kinda simple,


    Brake lightly and use the graph to stay in the regen area while braking, plan acordingly and brake only when needed..don't try to unnecessarily drive in Pwr part of the graph...
     
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  16. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

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    (there are tricks with hills, I never see any hills so I do not know them)

    Gentle braking is great when you know you are going to stop. If you can time your lights so you never stop, even better. There is no point to be the first to get to the red light.

    If you make the longest leg first, the engine will warm up and stay warm for the shorter legs. A warm engine is a frugal engine, outside temps improve MPG up to about 85. If you can combine trips, do so.

    Toyota has tuned the tire pressure to give the most comfortable ride. Closer to 40 PSI will give longer tire life, and improved handling. Max sidewall pressure will give max MPG, but your comfort and safety should stop you from going that high.
    Above about 35 MPH, you are better off with the windows closed and the A/C on. Changing the airflow of your Prius will hurt MPG: roof racks, weird spoilers, wider wheels and tires, all bad. Toyota spent a lot of time in the wind tunnel.

    Never try to tough it out in the heat, the A/C also cools the big battery and it hates heat.

    Avoid the EV button unless you are just relocating in a parking lot. The computers will choose to run in EV when they think it most frugal. You can't EV over 44 MPH.

    Avoid N, the big battery cannot charge in N. Worse, you can't get any regenerative braking in N. All that power will be wasted as heat. Toyota is required by law to have an N, you are never required to use it.

    Avoid B unless you are on a mountain pass, (more than 1000 foot vertical drop) B wastes energy by using the engine as an air pump. Selecting B at the top of pass keeps the big battery and disk rotors cooler on the long downhills.

    The flatter it is, the more Cruise Control is your friend, but CC does not understand hills.

    The v is geared so you can spin the tires, don't.
     
  17. Blizzard_Persona

    Blizzard_Persona Senior Member

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    I amicably disagree, N Is invaluable on longer descents where you don't need or want regen and just want seamless addition to your mpg and or an extended free ride.....

    Ie. Rolling hills in the country or a long highway stretch with no traffic in front or behind....

    On both my former Persona, my former three, and my current v three I use(d) N when appropriate, and when and if I remember(d), and it def. helps with mpg...

    Granted, don't be that fella or gal that gets to the bottom of the hill on that "free ride" and forgets to shift back into drive mode. lol!! I've been that fella and felt silly afterwards...I was counciled forthwith by the CFO...
     
  18. Steve Lee

    Steve Lee Member

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    I suggest for you to think first, why you purchased Prius v, then if the expectation(s) did not meet your requirement then I would take it back to the dealer. If you understood why you purchased Prius v, and did not meet your expectation(s) I would take it back to the dealer. If you understood why you purchased Prius v, did not meet your expectation and you willing to concede or cooperate with Prius v, then I will take it to dealer.
     
  19. Zaphod Beeblebrox

    Zaphod Beeblebrox New Member

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    Its twofold really. First its a wagon that will hold 3 kids in booster seats comfortably across the back...there's a limited number of cars that can do this that aren't SUV's. Second it appeared on paper to have a shot at getting at least as good (way better to hear the marketing dept. tell it) fuel economy as my little mini. Jury's out on that one so far.

    Unfortunately presently I'm not driving it like a mini and I'm getting worse fuel economy than the mini did....are you saying I should drive it like a zippy little go-kart and my MPG will improve? (somehow I don't think this is what you were getting at)

    Its warmer out today (almost above freezing!) and it seems that having the heat off is making a difference in how often the ICE runs.
     
  20. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    no question. you need the engine to produce heat. have you taken her for a nice long scenic tour to see how she does?
     
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