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Should I Get A Smart Cdi As A Daily Commuter, 200km A Day?

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They are far, far better on the highway than in the city.

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I totally agree with you, diesels do like to run and the highway is their play ground.

Edited by dmoonen

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If you're doing mostly highway driving, get a diesel. Diesels love to run for long distances at constant speed/RPM. When i was commuting from Oakville to Toronto daily, i was putting on about 500 km a week, and was easily pulling 4.3 L/100km without even trying. Hybrids really don't shine on the highway. They do best in the city where you're getting a lot of regenerative braking and use of the start/stop function of the engine. Now that i'm driving mostly shorter distances in my cdi, i'm averaging about 420 km per tank, but that's currently on the winter tires, and i'm driving it a little less gently lately. I should probably start to baby it since it's getting up there. ;)

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Diesels used at higher speed also have less problems with the particulate filters as they get hot enough to burn off the carbon and get so dont get choked up so quickly. With many new Diesels they rev at extremely low speeds and so are very relaxed at higher speeds compaired to a small petrol (Gas) engine, and can overtake without excessive downchanging. However I would get a larger car for a 200km comute, a smart is small and is also more prone to side drafts from larger vehicles at high speed. Also whilst a Smart is excellent at frontal accidents (My wifes 451 was written off when hit in the front by another car at around 40mph, She walked away) they do get thrown around because they are so light in an accident. Take a look at some of the crash test footage. Being side swiped at 50mph by an 18wheeler would not be a good outcome. I would feel more comfortable in something like a Golf which will do 60 to 70MPG (Thats UK gallons) at around 60 to 70 MPH. I think a Smart would struggle to get much better.Grumpyb (UK)

Edited by Grumpyb

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Hybrids really don't shine on the highway. They do best in the city where you're getting a lot of regenerative braking and use of the start/stop function of the engine.

Is that statement based on experience? Or just what the automotive journalists have lead everyone into believing?Hearing people say "hybrids are only good in the city" is about as annoying as hearing people say "smart cars aren't safe."-Iain Edited by Duck

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Is that statement based on experience? Or just what the automotive journalists have lead everyone into believing?Hearing people say "hybrids are only good in the city" is about as annoying as hearing people say "smart cars aren't safe."-Iain

My statement above is pretty much the accepted logic in the automotive industry, but it's backed up by direct family experience with three generations of hybrids, and my smart CDI. I didn't say "hybrids are only good in the city," i just said that's the driving cycle where they achieve their best efficiency.My brother drove a second-gen Prius for years (replaced last year with a Lexus CT200h) and my dad drove a Camry Hybrid for years (replaced this year with a Lincoln MKZ Hybrid). Neither have been able to touch my 4.1 L/100km combined in just highway driving. I've never had a ScanGauge to see exactly what kind of highway numbers i've been able to get, so i just go with my combined figure. My dad's new Lincoln can get in the low fives on the highway (going downhill), but the hybrids will pretty much slay my smart CDI in city driving. Keep in mind this is with real-world driving and not using "hypermiling" techniques to try and eke out the greatest efficiency possible. Ain't nobody got time for that. ;)City driving with a hybrid allows you to stay in EV mode more at lower speeds. There's generally more braking in city driving, giving you more regenerative juice. And city driving also allows the stop-start system to do its thing, keeping ICE use to a minimum. All of those factors combine to make hybrids capable of achieving their maximum efficiency in city-type driving. In long stretches of highway driving, they behave much more like very efficient ICE vehicles, but they can't take advantage of the battery, regenerative braking or engine shut-off features the way they do in the city.Diesels are known for achieving maximum efficiency running for long periods of time at constant RPM, i.e. highway driving. That's why transport trucks, trains and ships all use diesel engines instead of gasoline engines. It's ideally suited to the kind of driving those vehicles do. And you'll also notice that in-town delivery vehicles like the FedEx and UPS fleets also tend to be gasoline, propane or hybrid rather than diesel.

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***(The Prius) drivetrain and engine are so freakishly optimized for low consumption that even at highway speeds the fuel use is far less than that of any other car. ***-Iain(Edited only for brevity, not for out-of-context quoting purposes.)

That I believe. On the highway it would be even better if you could dump the weight penalty! So why can't we buy a "freakishly optimized" car that is intended for longer highway trips? Edited by Alex

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