Which route is better for the new car

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by peterpanusa, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. peterpanusa

    peterpanusa New Member

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    My new Prius now has 300 miles on it, and will take a trip from Los Angeles to Sacramento.
    Route 1: (I-5) is 400 miles but with climbing up and down of mountains.
    Route 2: (highway 101) is 540 miles on relatively flat land.

    So which route is better for the car ?
     
  2. dtuite

    dtuite Silverback

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    What it says in the owners manual: "Just drive it."
     
  3. PriusCrazy

    PriusCrazy Blizzard Pearl for Me

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    As far as mpg is concerned, without question Route 2. The flatter the better. Depending on the grade of the mountains, I'd be concerned with pushing my Prius that hard with a few hundred miles on it. Doubt it will do any harm, but if it were me, I probably wouldn't do the mountain route just yet.
     
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  4. firepa63

    firepa63 Former Prius Owner

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    It's a car. You drive it. It doesn't drive you.
     
  5. macmaster05

    macmaster05 Senor Member

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    Not necessarily. If there's any incline in the smallest way possible it may kill your mileage.
     
  6. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Senior Member

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    I'd take PCH all the way baby! Problem is it is gonna take too much time and Prius doesn't handle that good at least w/o rear swaybar and STB.
     
  7. direstraits71

    direstraits71 Member

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    Other than crossing the Tejon Pass at 400 feet north of LA I think you'll find I5 is pretty much without significant hills all the way to Sacramento. 101 has several ups and downs, notably before Buellton in Santa Barbara county and just north of San Luis Obispo. Given the lesser mileage I5 will consume less gas, be faster, and you avoid the traffic jam going around San Jose/Oakland unless you cut over to I5 at Gilroy and avoid San Jose altogether. Neither way will tax your car in anyway. In the winter if there's been recent snow at the 4000 foot level 101 would be the choice.
     
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  8. dogfriend

    dogfriend Human - Animal Hybrid

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    I would have to see a profile of both routes before I would believe that US 101 is flatter than I-5. I-5 is mostly flat except for the Grapevine. There are some rolling hills North of Kettleman City, but not much elevation change.
     
  9. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    101 is more comfortable to cruise on... i've taken both paths.

    5 sucks in the slow lane.. and i suspect you won't be holding 75+ so you would be behind rigs. passing isn't exactly good since it's basically the heaviest load you can put on the ICE. (gas engine)...
     
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  10. mikewithaprius

    mikewithaprius New Member

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    Hmm, the sort of "just drive it" comments are confusing me, it's a legitimate question about the break-in period of a brand new car.

    From other reading it sounds like *not* staying at constant speeds is best. So on your trip, instead of setting cruise control to 65 mph, actively try to adjust your sort of "central" speed every now and then.

    Since other people who know the area think I-5 is not a big deal hill wise, seems easier to go that way and save 6 gallons/$25 on the roundtrip.
     
  11. adamace1

    adamace1 Senior Member

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    I would do route 1. Toyota just says don't floor it, and to try not to slam on the brakes, and not to drive at a constant speed(not to run the ice at a constant rpm). Route 1 sounds better.
     
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  12. TonyK51

    TonyK51 Junior Member

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    Within the first few days of owning our baby, we drove from Knoxville to Atlanta. I had to ensure I varied the MPH and kept extra space so if something happened I did not have to brake hard.

    So if it were me, and I was familiar with I-5 or 101 in CA, I would take the route that would give my new car the best break in period possible. I know I-5 from Portland to Eugene and 101 mostly up the OR coast. My money would be on I-5, at least in OR.

    Just follow some simple rules (outlined in this thread or the manual) and you should have no problem.
     
  13. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney EditProfOptInfoCustomUser Title

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    Not only is it important for break, it's safer and a hypermiling Free Money rule: if you keep a good buffer you'll avoid a lot of braking and therefore drive more efficiently.
     
  14. stream

    stream Senior Member

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    Several years ago I negotiated a deal on a car over the phone, flew to LAX and drove it back to the SF bay area. The car had a 2,000 mile recommended break in period (vs. a few hundred miles for the Prius, so you're almost past it). I took I-5, and didn't find any elevation changes too severe.

    The key to the break in period is to not accelerate/decelerate too quickly, and don't stay at a constant speed for too long. I varied my engine speed (easier to do with a manual trans), kept to within 10 MPH of the speed limit (as painful as that was for a 400 mile trip in a brand new Porsche!) and also stopped a few times for 10 - 15 minutes to allow the car to heat cycle. Mine had 8 miles on it, so I was really starting from the beginning.

    I think it's a waste of 140 additional miles to take 101, plus I found I-5 much more pleasant.
     
  15. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Senior Member

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    It may not be necessary to vary the speed of a new Prius, at least as far as the ICE is concerned. Driving at a constant speed on the highway the engine RPM will continuously vary all the way from under 1000 to several thousand depending on how much power is needed.

    I agree with those who say just drive it. But try not to come down on the brakes to hard, unless you have to of course, for the first thousand miles or so.
     
  16. peterpanusa

    peterpanusa New Member

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    Thanks everyone for the advices, seems the I-5 is the preferred route, will take that.
    Yes, indeed I was also concern about the "constant speed" and braking.
     
  17. dtuite

    dtuite Silverback

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    What's with the "easy on the brakes" business? I thought the pads didn't get near the rotors until you were going less tha 8 mph. And I think Tumbleweed nailed it on the ICE speed varying all over the place. Meanwhile, isn't there some kind of construction going on around Buttonwillow, now? Yeah, here it is from the CALTRANS Website: " [IN THE CENTRAL CALIFORNIA AREA] RAFFIC IS REDUCED TO 1 LANE IN EACH DIRECTION 2 MI NORTH OF THE JCT OF SR 58 (KERN CO) 24 HRS A DAY 7 DAYS A WEEK THRU 10/20/11 - DUE TO
    CONSTRUCTION. " That would tend to point me toward 101. Also, last week, there was a construction back up at the Ventura/San Diego freway interchange. Not too bad, maybe 10 minutes of stop-and-go. Jumping off at Sepulveda didn't look like a good option.
     
  18. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Senior Member

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    That is a good point. It would be more accurate if we said use all the regen braking you want to but keep an eye on the HSI indicator. When the HSI bar gets clear to the left side of the regen portion (far left of the display) then you start using friction brakes, also at low speeds as you pointed out. When using friction brakes is when you need to take it easy. Of course most of us do that anyway without even thinking about it.
     
  19. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Hard braking, the kind that should be limited during breakin, always uses friction. At highway speed, even moderate braking uses friction.

    The battery current limit restricts regen braking to about 27kW. Hard braking at highway speed is equivalent to around 500kW, so any braking effort over about 5% of maximum braking force requires friction. As speeds drop, this maximum regen braking force gets progressively higher.
     
  20. mad-dog-one

    mad-dog-one Prius Enthusiast

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    Road Less Travelled: I don't think one route or the other is better for the break-in of a new car. To make the trip more interesting, you might consider taking one going North and the other for South. If time is an issue, I-5 will be faster, while Hwy 101 is more scenic and avoids those stinking cows near Kettleman.
     
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