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Discussion Starter #1
The Volt seems to love going to Vermont, last week we went to Woodtock via Cornish NH, about 300 miles round trip, the Volt got 48MPG. Thought that was pretty good, but this week went to Brattleboro, only about 175 miles roundtrip, got 53.6MPG. I always drive in L, use Hold on the way out after consuming about two bars, Mountain on the way back. Regen braking picked up a full bar on the way out which certainly contributed to the great number.

2018-07-08_54mpg.jpg

2018-06-30 _48mpg.jpg
 

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Summer temperatures make the air less dense, there is less air resistance at speed. Summer gasoline blends generally provide better fuel economy than winter blends. Of course with a Volt you may well still be running on winter gas purchased months ago.
 

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Why use Mountain mode on the way back?
 

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The Volt seems to love going to Vermont, last week we went to Woodtock via Cornish NH, about 300 miles round trip, the Volt got 48MPG. Thought that was pretty good, but this week went to Brattleboro, only about 175 miles roundtrip, got 53.6MPG. I always drive in L, use Hold on the way out after consuming about two bars, Mountain on the way back. Regen braking picked up a full bar on the way out which certainly contributed to the great number.
Your results aren't really surprising.

300 miles at 40mpg is 7.5gallons.
300 miles at 48mpg is 6.25 gallons.
1.25 gallons at 40mpg gives 50 miles.
175 miles at 40mpg is 4.375 gallons.
175 miles at 53.6mpg is 3.265 gallons.
1.110 gallons at 40mpg gives 44.4 miles.

Thursday we escaped the humid 90s by heading far Downeast, to Winter Harbor (74*), Schoodic Point (low 70s by the water) and Lubec (69* by the water).
All away from the Interstate and lots of 55mph driving. Our 2013 was getting a little over 40mpg in hybrid mode, but stealing a bit from EV since we got a little over 38 miles EV range.

But, since I know we'd have beaten our mpg with our 2010 Prius it doesn't really impress me. What matters is that this is _exceptional_ driving, day to day driving is mostly electric, and that this was just with a Gen 1. Plug-ins are improving measurably with every generation.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Why use Mountain mode on the way back?
Two reasons, 1) it leaves me some electric left when I get off the highway at the end of the trip, 2) it seems quieter and peppier when it still has the two bars of electricity left then when the battery is empty. The peppiness is probably real, the purpose of Mountain Mode is to provide extra power when running on the gas engine. I don't know if the greater quietness and smoothness is a figment of my imagination or if it's real, I think the effect is that in Mountain Mode the engine is just running to recharge the battery and that when it needs extra power the car draws them from the battery rather than increasing the power from the engine.
 

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Noticed only 13.5 kWh used -- is that normal?

I've found the hold mode seems to "borrow" a few kWh while using it--and it never seems to return.

I'll get 14.1-14.2 without using hold, but if I use hold I seem to lose anywhere from 0.4-0.6 kWh. I've noticed that the Gen 2 Volt will also continue to add gas miles (and increase the MPG) for a bit after switching back to "normal." In the Gen 1, I realized this was due to electricity generated and recharged from the ICE, but the Gen 2 doesn't due as frequent charging.
 

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I think that at lower speeds, the battery is used to get the car moving vs only using the engine. I was watching the gauges yesterday while in hold mode & this seemed to be the case, once I got over ~ 40 kph there was no battery used. Too bad it would not charge it back to "Hold" set level.
I recently did a 2000km+ trip, starting with a fully charged battery, on "Hold" with a few 10-20 second lapses and by the time I got home at the end of the trip, I had lost half the battery charge. It was an interesting observation.
 

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I think that at lower speeds, the battery is used to get the car moving vs only using the engine. I was watching the gauges yesterday while in hold mode & this seemed to be the case, once I got over ~ 40 kph there was no battery used. Too bad it would not charge it back to "Hold" set level.
I recently did a 2000km+ trip, starting with a fully charged battery, on "Hold" with a few 10-20 second lapses and by the time I got home at the end of the trip, I had lost half the battery charge. It was an interesting observation.
I've had the battery run down on a road trip by forgetting to put it back into hold after each gas/lunch stop.

It doesn't remember you were in Hold when you powered down. Since Hold mode has an allowable buffer, and since you set the _top_ of the buffer, then each power cycle likely leave your state of charge below your previous Hold line. So, even if you put it into Hold as soon as you turn the car on, a long trip with a bunch of stops would gradually use up your capacity. The only way you'd gain SoC would be if you'd shut down just after having done a bunch of regen.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Noticed only 13.5 kWh used -- is that normal?

I've found the hold mode seems to "borrow" a few kWh while using it--and it never seems to return.

I'll get 14.1-14.2 without using hold, but if I use hold I seem to lose anywhere from 0.4-0.6 kWh. I've noticed that the Gen 2 Volt will also continue to add gas miles (and increase the MPG) for a bit after switching back to "normal." In the Gen 1, I realized this was due to electricity generated and recharged from the ICE, but the Gen 2 doesn't due as frequent charging.
Because I use Mountain Mode on the highway on the way back then flip to Normal when I get off the highway there is some electricity left at the end, that's why it's 13.5 and not 14 KWs used.
 

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We have a 2016 Volt Premier with over 42,000 miles and nearly 14,000 just on the gas engine. Per voltstats.net we have been averaging over 50 MPG since March 2018: The right column is the mpg just on gasoline. 87 octane. My wife and I from last trip yesterday per the Volt Screen: trip total: 126 miles. / electric 69.3 miles used 14.1 KWH / 56.7 miles on gas with .96 gal's used /59 mpg. Trip via Highway 101 to Tillamook Oregon. Also voltstats.net under reports the mpg on gas. According to voltstats yesterday trip on gas was recorded as 55.1 miles. For a loaded car over 4,000 lbs the GM 1.5 Volt's engine is the most fuel efficient engine GM manufactures, and probably the top ten fuel efficient engines out there. We also have a 2010 Prius and our Prius loaded in the same way would be hard pressed to improve on those mpg the Volt delivers.


July 2018 410.34 579.02 51.30 72.38 70.9 189.94 83.66 55.33
June 2018 1252.66 2551.91 41.53 84.21 49.1 104.26 70.31 53.08
May 2018 1394.46 2087.14 46.53 68.88 66.8 169.51 81.96 56.26
April 2018 1071.82 1579.89 41.62 64.71 67.8 161.03 79.31 51.78
 

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So what are some of your tips/tricks to achieve these nice gas MPG miles if you don't mind sharing?

I'm relatively new, volt with 7500ish miles, about 70% electric but once a week I take a 150+ mile trip without charge so I need the gas engine. I usually simply try to use the electric miles on roads with <=50 MPH speed limit and stop lights and use the gas everywhere else, although there is still more highway 55+ MPH than stretches of stop lights and back roads.

I've seen a few folks talk about mountain mode and never tried it. Anecdotally from those folks it seems like if your going to be on engine anyways at 55+ MPH you may as well charge in mountain if you can use the electric elsewhere? What about if your on highway for say a 100 mile stretch would you still use mountain on say 70 miles to get electric to use on the other 30? In other words, I don't have over 60 miles of back road / slower areas, so does that mean mountain mode won't be useful? I imagine mountain mode takes a MPG hit while using it.

Obviously speed is important. Driving 52 or 53 MPH seems to do a whole lot better on MPG, I can get upper 40s most of the time (its summer here BTW)

Any other tips?

Marty
 

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Last Monday I drove from Albany, NY to Lebanon, NH and then to Nashua, NH, entirely on back roads and my MPGcs was over 50 MPG. I've also noticed that my Volt gets 50+ MPG along the Front Range of Colorado. The regenerative braking system in this car is close to 90% efficient and I've seen long stretches of "level" ground after descents run on regenerated electric alone.
 

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So what are some of your tips/tricks to achieve these nice gas MPG miles if you don't mind sharing?

I'm relatively new, volt with 7500ish miles, about 70% electric but once a week I take a 150+ mile trip without charge so I need the gas engine. I usually simply try to use the electric miles on roads with <=50 MPH speed limit and stop lights and use the gas everywhere else, although there is still more highway 55+ MPH than stretches of stop lights and back roads.

I've seen a few folks talk about mountain mode and never tried it. Anecdotally from those folks it seems like if your going to be on engine anyways at 55+ MPH you may as well charge in mountain if you can use the electric elsewhere? What about if your on highway for say a 100 mile stretch would you still use mountain on say 70 miles to get electric to use on the other 30? In other words, I don't have over 60 miles of back road / slower areas, so does that mean mountain mode won't be useful? I imagine mountain mode takes a MPG hit while using it.

Obviously speed is important. Driving 52 or 53 MPH seems to do a whole lot better on MPG, I can get upper 40s most of the time (its summer here BTW)

Any other tips?

Marty
Mountain mode on the Gen 2 will only build up 15% SOC (about 2 bars on the meter). At highway speeds this would be < 10 miles at most. Better to start out the trip with a full or almost full battery and switch to Hold mode for the majority of the trip. If you know you will be able to charge at your destination then you could switch to Normal for the last part of the trip to your destination. In truth if you are not crossing a western US or Canada mountain range or starting on a long ascent (thinking of the I-5 headed north out of Los Angeles into or beyond the region known as grapevine) then Mountain Mode is not required for the Gen 2 Volt to be able to perform as expected on long ascents. Just switch to Hold mode with at least a few bars remaining on the battery SOC meter and you will be fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
So what are some of your tips/tricks to achieve these nice gas MPG miles if you don't mind sharing?

I'm relatively new, volt with 7500ish miles, about 70% electric but once a week I take a 150+ mile trip without charge so I need the gas engine. I usually simply try to use the electric miles on roads with <=50 MPH speed limit and stop lights and use the gas everywhere else, although there is still more highway 55+ MPH than stretches of stop lights and back roads.

I've seen a few folks talk about mountain mode and never tried it. Anecdotally from those folks it seems like if your going to be on engine anyways at 55+ MPH you may as well charge in mountain if you can use the electric elsewhere? What about if your on highway for say a 100 mile stretch would you still use mountain on say 70 miles to get electric to use on the other 30? In other words, I don't have over 60 miles of back road / slower areas, so does that mean mountain mode won't be useful? I imagine mountain mode takes a MPG hit while using it.

Obviously speed is important. Driving 52 or 53 MPH seems to do a whole lot better on MPG, I can get upper 40s most of the time (its summer here BTW)

Any other tips?

Marty
Here is the way I drive,

1) I always drive in L. L gives you stronger regen braking, better control going down mountain roads, one peddle driving and I think it gives better mileage.

2) On any trip that is going to use gas I use Normal until I get to the highway, then I switch to Hold as long as I'm on a highway. When I get off the highway I switch to Mountain Mode. The reason for Mountain Mode vs Normal is that it keeps a two bar reserve. I return home on Mountain Mode until I leave the highway and then switch to Normal for the final bit of the trip to use up the battery. I find that there is less engine noise in Mountain Mode then in Normal, it may be a figment of my imagination but the car seems smoother. I attribute this to the car having the battery to provide extra power when it needs it rather than the engine.
 

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For max mpg we keep our 2016 Volt Premier with all 4 factory equipped tires, Michelin Energy Saver AS, all at 44 PSI. Engine oil is Mobil One 100% synthetic motor oil in 0w20 weight. With over 42,000 miles and 14,000 miles on gas the gas engine is well broken in. Since March 2018 we have been averaging well over 50 mpg just on gas. Last trip last weekend, my wife and I went down the Oregon Coast via Highway 101 to the Tillamook Oregon area. Upon our arrival home the dash read, trip mileage 126.0 / electric 69.2 with 14.1 KWH used, 56.7 miles on gas with .96 gal's used (87 octane Coscto Reg. gas) 59 mpg. We have a 2010 Prius which would have cost us over $2.00 more for the entire trip...
 

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It's not hard to get good gas milage, and it doesn't require you doing an elaborate dance:
1. Use cruise control on the highway so the engine runs at a steady pace.
2. Don't speed.
3. DON'T SPEED :)
 
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