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Author Topic: Lose the spare improve Mileage? Back to Topics
flybigrc

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St. Louis

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Message Posted: Oct 24, 2012 11:32:12 AM

Thought I would throw this one out there for discussions and opinions. The concept is lesson the weight of the vehicle your MPG should go up, all things remaining equal.

Anyone try this and what results if any did you see?

My new Ford Fucus ST comes with a full size spare so its a good 50 lbs in a 3000 lb vehicle. 1.5% of the weight.

(I have AAA so I dont worry about flats)

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oilpan4
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jan 26, 2013 5:21:26 PM

"Next,...Maybe... no top racks"

This one works, we have a guy over on ecomodder who bought a 2000 suburban, previous owner installed a big ugly roof rack.
After the roof rack removal he gained 1.5 to 2mpg on the highway and cut out a lot of wind noise.
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weddy11
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Jan 26, 2013 5:16:23 PM

No
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drydem
Veteran Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Jan 25, 2013 9:38:52 PM

The weight of the spare tire and jack are inconsequential. Your top speed, tire pressure, and how many time a vehicle has to brake to stop matters more to fuel efficiency. The Optimum Fuel efficient top speed for a car is between 30 to 40 mph and for a truck its about 20 to 25 mph. At under 40 mph rolling resistance matter more than aerodynamic drag - so tire pressure and the type of tire and the condition of the roads matter more. At over 45 mph aerodynamic drag matters more - if you are NOT adverse to making your vehicle look like a fish ... adding a boat-tail to the rear of the vehicle will add up to 5 mpg to + 50mph driving trips (it does this by removing aerodynamic drag caused by wind turbulence in the rear)

[Edited by: drydem at 1/25/2013 9:40:22 PM EST]
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Jan 25, 2013 9:50:10 AM

So for the cars of the future to be road serviced,the AAA sponsered utility/tow trucks may need to carry on board a synthetic goo dispencer,goo pump,also. Instead a universal fit spare with multifit lug patterns to lease out till original wheel is made correct by tire shop(repaired/replaced).Deposit credited.... later. Tires do get ruined on flat occassions.
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Jan 24, 2013 10:37:34 AM

Next,...Maybe... no side rearview mirrors/top racks,probably look at a camera split screen,improves high speed aerodynamics. I always wondered about aero foils for RWD rear ends, the axle housing rather(eliminating air drag) under the vehicle at the rear,exposed under components catch air resistance also as the figure of x speed RF's increases, this V/S mileage might eleminate some drag. Gee! Spares are a can with maybe a 5" hose,nozzle,something! Push-button,clamp-on.....?
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elcheapo2011
Champion Author Quebec

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Message Posted: Jan 24, 2013 9:39:35 AM

no, not a good idea. What would be next, planning a diet?
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weddy11
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Jan 24, 2013 8:51:50 AM

No
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Jan 23, 2013 11:02:54 PM

When driving my econo I could say 90% of the time only two are on board,not only could I cast away my spare plus the associated hardware,but also both rear seats,as they fold down and are removeable. My vehicle has a full size spare plus two seats that could be est.at a total of close to 220 lbs. removed,now over a 12 year period > no flats > (a fact) I should have saved a bundle $$ on fuel due to weight reduction.Thinking so but haven't.....The 90% figure over 12 years should have been 98% as we now know it! Oh Well......
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oilpan4
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jan 23, 2013 10:00:26 PM

"not a good idea. it's a penny wise and a dollar foolish".

A lot of people are buying new cars that only come OEM equipped with a can of fix a flat and dont even know it.

About 13% of you have bought a car with out a spare and I bet 90% of those that have don't know it and wont know it until they get a flat.

http://ask.cars.com/2011/07/how-many-2011-vehicles-dont-have-a-spare-tire.html

[Edited by: oilpan4 at 1/23/2013 10:04:43 PM EST]
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Skyjunky
All-Star Author Portland

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Message Posted: Jan 23, 2013 9:53:31 AM

Leave it in and Always check the air to make sure that it has air UNLESS it is a dough nut type... and yes AAA will want to put your own tire on as "LONEWOLFE2nv" has stated....
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lonewolf2nv
Rookie Author Cleveland

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Message Posted: Jan 23, 2013 7:48:50 AM

AAA or not if you call them out for a flat they are going to want to install your spare tire for you. They do not fix tires on the side of the road. They might be willing to take you and your tire to a tire shop assuming there is one near by and they are open. But honestly I would not give up my spare willingly. Some new cars are coming with a spare tire kit (btw there is no tire its just a can of fix a flat basically) which I think is stupid but Im sure the manufacturers see it as $50 less in cost per vehicle not as a gas saving issue.
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OilerFan
Champion Author Tulsa

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Message Posted: Jan 23, 2013 7:20:02 AM

not a good idea. it's a penny wise and a dollar foolish.
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oilpan4
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Jan 22, 2013 10:37:47 PM

I put the spare and jack, plus my little hydraulic floor jack back in the lincon for a road trip and didn't bother to take it out.
And this tank looks like its going to be at least 1 to 2 MPG off its normal consistant city driving fuel milage numbers.
The lincon town car uses a rear air bag suspension. My guess is with the added weight its running the compressor more in addition to just having more weight.
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Jan 22, 2013 8:37:37 AM

The main thing to remember about weight is how it gets transported,how often it gets put into motion. The rest is the form of transporting,by air ,flotation,rolling on wheels,dropped as using gravity, even reversed as to accend.

Most drivers know if they pull an empty trailer,then load that trailer,all aspects of towing it takes extra power energy. The same for a ski boat ,the more passengers or towed skiers the higher energy fuel bill.Size and weight does matter.

The compounding of the starts of motion changes the ratio of each energy blast to due so(gain motion with any weight). Energy blast refering to down on the go-pedel repeatly,to start motion with any vehicle,object even.

Still my motorcycle responds better with only one rider than two on the seats,two places,not solo,tires need less pressure at the rear,handling is better,and my belt feels more comfortable,better mileage results....mainly noticed riding city,with only the one rider. $ .....saved....
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IAMCANADIAN73
Champion Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Jan 22, 2013 7:12:57 AM

Not worth it
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IAMCANADIAN73
Champion Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Jan 22, 2013 7:12:42 AM

No
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dgsteven
Champion Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Jan 22, 2013 3:03:56 AM

never
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vulcan96
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Jan 22, 2013 1:42:37 AM

not really measerable
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traffic cop
Champion Author Boston

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Message Posted: Jan 21, 2013 11:44:36 AM

Shockjock1961, apologies: I passed over your post when I made mine about mid-gut spare tires, love handles, and all that. You were there first!

Seriously: Consider removing a roof rack, especially if it's a large sports-gear one and you don't use it much. I see people with keeping cargo boxes on their boxes all the time. I wonder how often those are actually used.
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DrVenture
Rookie Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Jan 21, 2013 11:37:39 AM

loosing the spare will not increase gas mileage, just improve a track time by like a millisecond if that. So if you wanna pretend that in your head its saving you gas then by all means pay more for tripple A then what you would for gas having the spare along for the ride! lol...
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WEDDY
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Jan 21, 2013 9:33:12 AM

Never lose the spare!
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Wanda127
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Jan 20, 2013 11:24:17 PM

I don't have a full size spare. I have a small donut spare which doesn't weigh much so it would not make much difference on my fuel mileage.
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traffic cop
Champion Author Boston

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Message Posted: Jan 20, 2013 1:30:02 PM

Lose the spare tire held in by your belt buckle and lose your high blood pressure.
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jay93LA
Champion Author New Orleans

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Message Posted: Jan 12, 2013 10:03:07 AM

keep spare
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WES03
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Jan 12, 2013 7:30:35 AM

How many folks are even capable of changing a tire along the side of the road?
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Jan 11, 2013 9:29:52 PM

I can agree with lessen the vehicle transport weight then MPGs will increase,mine have,yours should.
If the driver stops paying attention to MPGs then the effort is often a negative,any other ideas are negative,like worrying about a flat before it could happen,stone bust on the windshield,dog peeing on a sharp set of wheels,cat caught in the engine pulleys,..... Seems logical.....x10.

I never complain as long as my vehicle mo.fuel stays less than my home heating bill,so my driving habits have done that,no sweat!

I can agree with stop the worry,new driving habits save fuel,takes some thought/concentration,the strain of that often stifles most drivers or the effort does. GLuck with whatever you try....
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Shockjock1961
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Jan 9, 2013 11:13:30 AM

Americans losing the spare tire around their mid sections would do more to save gas then getting rid of the spare tire in the trunk...
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GLM4205
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Jan 9, 2013 6:11:35 AM

"If you are micro managing fuel mileage,remember this..."

...you need to get a life.

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HotRod10
Champion Author Wyoming

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Message Posted: Jan 8, 2013 10:09:36 AM

"If you are micro managing fuel mileage,remember this..."

...you need to get a life.

If little things like the weight of the spare tire or the drag of the brake drums are occupying your thoughts, it's time for a more fuel-efficient car, or do the things Banjoe listed.

If you want to do something meaningful, put some mental effort into minimizing the miles you drive by combining trips, etc. That will do substantially more to save gas than tossing out stuff you may need.
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Jeff1226
Sophomore Author Flint

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Message Posted: Dec 31, 2012 7:09:14 AM

Not sure how much it would help
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oilpan4
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Dec 30, 2012 8:36:39 PM

Ever since I started tracking fuel economy on our lincon town car as far as I can tell removing the spare has helped.
The first 2 tanks were with the spare and are the worse 2 tanks I have recorded so far.
This car is driven in nearly all stop and go driving below 40mph.

The spare goes back in when we go away from town.
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JohnTIZ
Veteran Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Dec 30, 2012 6:09:00 PM

Roadside assistance still needs the spare to get you on your way. Then you can deal with getting the tire fixed/replaced on your own schedule.
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 30, 2012 5:55:33 PM

If you are micro managing fuel mileage,remember this; If your vehicle has drum rear brakes,then you parallel park a lot or drive in reverse, making a lot of brake applications doing so on a daily basis > then your vehicle is experiencing rear brake drum drag by a small % nothing wrong but the rear brakes adjust themselves by that motion in reverse/braking automaticly.

The drag can lower mileage a very small % untill several forward stops are completed.Backing a long driveway daily in reverse or any other similiar reverse/repeated brake use motion action is the reason for that A..adjustment.
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roxanebay
All-Star Author Nova Scotia

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Message Posted: Dec 30, 2012 12:55:17 AM

I prefer to have the full size spare to avoid a tow.... put spare on and ready to go.
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Banjoe
Champion Author Winnipeg

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 6:47:27 PM

Opel.....I wish. It was a Henry J.
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 12:06:08 PM

Banjoe's late model Rat Rod sounds cool,I did see a camouflaged Opel,no doors open top,no bumpers or windshield just a runabout,reversed wheels,loud engine pipes. We had a 57" fastback Volvo many years ago,tiny but kinda looked like the 47 Ford sedan fast-back,ran econo with a 4 speed,had dual carbs.OHV 4 cyl.headers.
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Banjoe
Champion Author Winnipeg

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 8:31:04 AM

Thanks RalphHightower but remember, I am a professional, so don't try any of these at home.
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RalphHightower
Champion Author South Carolina

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 8:20:12 AM

Great ideas Banjoe
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Banjoe
Champion Author Winnipeg

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 7:47:13 AM

Leaving behind the convenience of a spare tire is a great start but there's so much more that can be done if we want to reduce weight to improve fuel efficiency:

Don't forget to toss the jack and tire wrench as well.
Keep your gas tank below 1/4 full to save fuel weight.
Toss out all the seats and door panels.
Remove all chrome bits and pieces - both inside and out.
Take off the outside mirrors - also reduces wind resistance.
Remove air conditioner and all the weighty bits and pieces that go along with that fuel waster.
Drain down your windshield washer fluid to bare minimum.
Change to very light clothing and wear sandals not shoes - no socks at all.
Never wear a tie or belt.
Toss out your wallet and carry only your driver's licence and one credit card.
Drill lightening holes in your steering wheel, dashboard, and hood.
Remove the radiator fan, belt, and pulley.
Remove the power steering along with all hoses, fluids, and such.
Remove all the light bulbs from any convenience fixtures such as dome and trunk lights. If you have time, strip out the unnecessary wiring to all of these items.
Tear out all carpeting, head liner, trunk mats, dash coverings.
Radio, speakers, wiring, fuses need to be removed.
Airbags are almost never used so they can go.
Clock and other useless features have to be chopped out and tossed.
Remove all locks and linkages (no one is going to want to steal this thing when you're done)
Remove all unneeded fuses including any spares.
Window handles and inside hardware can be tossed - weld windows in closed position.
Remove all door handles except the driver's - no passengers will be permitted on board this super-light express.
Drain out the heavy air and pump in nitrogen in the remaining tires. Fill to maximum rating on tires.
Toss out the shocks (it's amazing how heavy a set can be).
Remove 20% of wheel lugs - if your wheels stay on, try another 20%.
Toss out the radiator overflow tank and hose.
Don't carry passengers (unless they're paying for gas).
Go on a diet and lose as much weight as possible.

Warning - some of these are just silly stuff......OK, all of them are completely silly but are offered as ideas of how much we have in our vehicles that is now considered basic necessities. Giving up on air bags is foolishness, removing wheel lugs is as stupid as can be, and taking off any safety item is completely dangerous. Losing weight might be a healthy option but that's the only item in this coocoobat list that I could support .
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vulcan96
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 5:24:22 AM

no noticeable improvement
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dgsteven
Champion Author Los Angeles

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Message Posted: Dec 29, 2012 3:11:00 AM

no
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JasTheAce
Champion Author Raleigh

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Message Posted: Dec 28, 2012 5:15:59 PM

everything helps, but what if you get a flat?
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eccerr0r
Champion Author Fort Collins

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Message Posted: Oct 31, 2012 8:39:15 PM

Runflat tires weigh more than regular tires?

50 lbs isn't a whole heck of a lot though for a 3000 lb vehicle, maybe for a 500 lb vehicle...

I'd rather have the tire for piece of mind. Even if I had AAA, I'd much rather just change it myself and get going instead of waiting for them to come and then wait for them to change it. Plus the risk of not having phone coverage...
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the1roadhog
Champion Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Oct 31, 2012 7:37:26 AM

Hardcore.
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sagnat
Champion Author Riverside

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Message Posted: Oct 30, 2012 9:50:40 AM

You'd also have to strip the interior of everything except the driver's seat to gain anything.
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Titanic1985
Champion Author South Carolina

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Message Posted: Oct 30, 2012 5:17:13 AM

I would not remove the spare to "improve" fuel economy. My vehicle is rated at 25/35 MPG, but 35 to 41 is the norm for me on E0 regular gasoline. I'm pleased with that :-) .
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rex0000
Sophomore Author Indianapolis

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Message Posted: Oct 29, 2012 9:00:37 PM

It wouldn;t make a differance.
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RRBC
Champion Author Victoria

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Message Posted: Oct 29, 2012 7:42:18 PM

Never thought of it
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slo_rolla
Rookie Author Orange County

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Message Posted: Oct 29, 2012 3:39:44 PM

Its a good idea in theory but like the others are sayin, its not worth the trouble better keep the spare. I did however, removed my windshield wipers completely off during the summer months and I can't say that it boosted MPG but it sure looked more aerodynamic.
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HotRod10
Champion Author Wyoming

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Message Posted: Oct 29, 2012 2:38:43 PM

Is the Fucus a new line from Ford? I haven't heard of it.

Anyway, the Ford Focus curb weight looks like it ranges between 3150 and 3250, and I seriously doubt that alloy wheel with a 40 series tire weighs anything close to 50 lbs - half that maybe. Weight/rolling resistance is only one factor in mileage, and a minor factor in highway mileage.

I'd still like to know if AAA will pay for a tow if you get a flat tire and have no spare.
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