if you’re a regular reader of our blog, you already know our story of how we drove a 2012 Volkswagen TDI Passat from Auburn Washington to the Golden Gate Bridge in California on one tank of fuel. We got over 800 miles from one tank.
So we can really appreciate this story of an East Coast couple that notched 84.1 mpg in a Volkswagen Passat diesel with six-speed manual (our was an automatic fully loaded)
Their high mileage let them go 1,621.1 miles on a single tank of fuel in a three-day ramble through nine states from Houston to Northern Virginia, VW and the couple says (from the photo it looks like they ended up at the VW US HQ in Virginia)
That car has a government rating of 31 mpg in the city, 43 on the highway and 35 in combined city/highway driving. So how did they achieve their ‘hyper-mileage’?
Things they did on the run:
- Never drove below minimum speed limits, where those exist, typically on interstate highways.
- Stayed about 5 mph below posted speed limits, which they calculate is good for a 23% gain in mileage (and is guaranteed to incite road rage among harried drivers in any urban area who get stuck behind a below-the-limit driver). VW says the couple discovered the Passat diesel got its best mpg at 48 mph, but they didn’t hold to that speed.
- Used air conditioning only twice, because it adds drag to the engine and uses more fuel. The rest of the time they drove with the windows down. And that is sure to reignite the furious argument over whether the aerodynamic benefits of windows-up balance the extra drag of running the AC. Apparently not, the Taylors’ trek indicates.
- They tried to drive so as to avoid idling, but they say there’s no benefit in stopping the engine at a long light to avoid idling, then restarting it — in fact it uses more fuel to do that, they say.
Congrats for pushing this amazing car even farther than we were able to. And if you’re near Auburn Washington, stop by our dealership and have a look for yourself.