Getting better MPG

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2016 CX-9 GT AWD
I've been working on getting better MPG with my CX5. Sadly, a lot of my commute is in stop and go traffic and I'm only on the highway for a few minutes a day out of my 20 minute commute, this leads me to have gas mileage in the low 20s which I'm a little disappointed in. I drive pretty laid back, i don't accelerate quickly and I'm not going more than 40-45 on city roads and 65 on the highway. I've received some tips such as letting the car coast down hills in gear (in the past I would pop it in neutral but people say it's worse since direct injection motors don't use gas when coasting), and to try to keep it around 55-60 on the highway, and lastly to use the cruise control as it does a better job than a human could at sending the right amount of signals to the engine.

Besides driving slower, cruising (take foot off gas and let gravity or inertia pull you to a stop as opposed to shifting to neutral), and using cruise control when it's safe, are there any other driving tips to keep MPG down? I'm aware of things like making sure spark plugs are clean and tire pressure is correct, but in terms of actual driving is there anything else that can be done to maximize MPG?
 
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2014 QX70 AWD
what's your current mileage? these engines perform better after a few 1,000 miles have been accrued.

other than that, make sure you're tires are inflated properly. your highway speeds don't seem to be the problem (these CUVs start suffering when going above 70/75 mph).
 
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2013 CX-5 6MT
Sounds to me like you've got most things covered.

How quickly, or slowly you accelerate doesn't matter nearly as much as how much you use the brakes.
If you need to brake that means that you've accelerated too much and you've wasted fuel. Also, if you can accelerate more quickly and catch a green light you'll save tons of fuel vs going slowly and having to brake for a red.

The other thing to keep in mind is that short trips kill MPG for the Skyactiv engines.
A 20 minute commute in stop and go can't be more than say 7mi?
That's a very short trip, and the engine likely hardly has time to warm up, especially in the winter.

I'm sure things will look better for you in the summer time.

Cruise control won't really help much. Cruise control tries to keep a constant speed, and often that's wasteful. It's more efficient to let you speed fluctuate with the terrain, wind and traffic conditions.
 
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Take your car out for a nice long drive. You will get a better idea of what it’s capable of , fuel economy wise. It sounds like you are doing the right things already to get better results. Unfortunately it’s your short trip routine that is interfering.

I short trip quite a bit but I purposely take the long way just to keep deposits from building up. On a recent BITOG thread the topic of maintenance dosing of fuel additives proved to be very interesting. Using Redline’s SI-1 additive at 1oz per 10 gallons of gasoline may have merits in keeping injectors clean even if you are using top tier gasoline.
 
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2013 CX-5 Touring FWD; 2013 BMW Z4 35i
My guess is at 6.5k miles you haven't yet changed the oil. When you do, make sure you use Mazda super moly oil. When I did my first service @5k miles, I noticed an improvement in mpg as have many others here. I'm not sure why that is, but the combination of engine break in with a few thousand miles and the superior quality of the hi-moly oil seems to really wake up the engine. My (2.0 litre) has hovered around 30 mpg ever since and that's mostly urban driving.
 

shadonoz

SkyActiv Member
Contributor
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State of Jefferson
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2017 CX-5 GT AWD+
Sounds like you're doing everything right, and you're getting typical mileage for your kind of driving.
I'd suggest you not stress over it just enjoy your fine ride, because nothing you do will change it much.
 
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2017 CX-5 GT AWD
Stop and go traffic is going to hurt and put you int the City MPG - low 20s. Idling at a stop may use less fuel then accelerating up a hill, but your MPG is effectively zero - you are burning fuel and not moving. So lots of stop time can affect averages.

Also Cruise control is not always better for gas mileage - especially in traffic. Cruise control will accelerate heavily to get you back up to speed (adaptive cruise control does this) - this is contrary to good gas mileage, but that is not the real purpose of cruise control (maintaining a set speed).
 

gce

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2018 CX-5 GT FWD Premium
I get the same mileage and I have a short commute too, 7 short city miles. Just enjoy the ride and don't worry about it.
 
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2015 CX-5 GT AWD liquid silver
The wife has a Honda CR-V and gets 21 mpg with her commute driving. After she gets home and on weekends we take my Mazda because I prefer to drive the CX-5 over the Honda. I get about 22 mpg on city driving. I suspect that your mileage will improve a little as you get some more miles on the car.
 

madar

Contributor
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2016.5 CX 5 Touring AWD, 2015 SCION XB
Try not to have defroster on too much, kicks in the A/C from time to time, or any other setting that utilizes the a/c. Car uses the a/c to keep the windows from fogging up. Affects mileage particularly around city driving. Maybe bump up tire pressure a pound or two
 
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2018 AWD GT Premium Red/Black
Don't drive with the windows open unless driving very slowly. Don't install any accessories on the exterior of the car. Keep your tires optimally inflated. Stay out of sports mode. Drive mostly downhill ;)
 

7eregrine

The man, the myth, the legend
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Land of Cleve
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2016.5 CX5
Take your car out for a nice long drive. You will get a better idea of what its capable of , fuel economy wise. It sounds like you are doing the right things already to get better results. Unfortunately its your short trip routine that is interfering.

This right here. You're simply not going to get good MPG in 20 minutes. In a Skyactive engine or any normal engine. You should have gotten a Prius if you want 30+ MPG in under 10-12 miles. Source: Commute is 9 miles and 15 minutes. The Mazda 3 gets great MPG, might get mid 20's on that.
My 4 cylinder Mazda and my 5 cylinder turbo Volvo have... the exact same MPG numbers.

But when I drive for more then 30 minutes in a local 25/35 mpg area I can EASILY hit 26-27+.
 

mazdadude

ZOOOOOOOOOM ZOOOOOOOOOM
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'16.5 Mazda CX-5 Touring
This right here. You're simply not going to get good MPG in 20 minutes. In a Skyactive engine or any normal engine. You should have gotten a Prius if you want 30+ MPG in under 10-12 miles. Source: Commute is 9 miles and 15 minutes. The Mazda 3 gets great MPG, might get mid 20's on that.
My 4 cylinder Mazda and my 5 cylinder turbo Volvo have... the exact same MPG numbers.

But when I drive for more then 30 minutes in a local 25/35 mpg area I can EASILY hit 26-27+.

Yes my prius gets 12mpg more for the same drive. However there is no smiling when driving the prius.