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smartzuum

non-hybrid cars from North America with excellent mileage

7 posts in this topic

I want to learn more about the cars of yesteryear that got GREAT mileage...

Here's one I know little about:

1992-1995 Honda Civic VX with a 1.5 litre engine and 5 speed transmission

Apparently a lighter version of the hatchback that was very popular

And it got 70 MPG hwy (imperial)

Why have I never heard of this car til now? What happened?

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I drove two of these R-5s in Europe in the 1980s - 1108 cc engine with a thimble-sized carb and lazy cam and VERY long gear ratios. You could get about 70 MPG Imperial with that car too, driving at 85 km/h (which we did driving across East Germany).

The CDN version was nowhere near as economical - they had a big 2 barrel carb and 1289, then 1397 cc engine and short gearing.

I still wish I had the 1984 Renault 5 GTL, silver, with 5 speed and the strangled 1108. It was a FINE car!

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I can`t remember the specifics, but if I remember right I owned a 1978 civic hatchback with 1,5 litre motor and 2 gear transmission (i.e. high and low). Used to travel from Montreal to Sherbrooke (about 100 miles trip) with less than 1/4 of a 40 litres tank.

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I learned a bit more about the VX Civic, which had a lean burn engine... there was a California version that was a little bit lower economy... I'm still trying to dredge up something thast explains WHY the car fell out of production. With newer technology (ie: NOx catalysts) this car ought to have had a future here. It really begs the question: WHY is the Civic Hybrid not even engineered for the same economy?

Another car of course that did extremely well on fuel was the 1.0 litre / 3 cylinder Geo Metro/Pontiac Firefly hatchback (and it's variants) which could get 63 mpg highway with a 5 speed. (The Suzuki Swift was a 1.3 litre / 4 cylinder that got 58 on the hwy, and the sedan versions of the GM brands had that same engine.)

Hard to believe that the Daewoo versions of the car today (Suzuki Swift+, Chevrolet Aveo, Pontiac Wave) get ONLY 46 mpg in a 5 speed. They all have a 1.6 litre 4 cyl now...

Is it really the consumer that is demanding MORE POWER and LESS ECONOMY?

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I think you've hit the nail on the head there enthusiast42.

Look at all the Altima's, Accords that used to produce only 130hp in a 4cyclinder back in 1990's/late 80's(approximate numbers here), now come with 160hp 9.8L/100km city and 6.9L/100kms highway. To find a car that had that kind of HP and that kind of mileage would have been unheard of back then. I think the mileage has improved but we are building bigger engines. Example as mentioned above 2005 altima 4 cyclinder is giving 9.8 & 6.9 L/100km city/highway respectively (160hp). back in 1991 the equivalent car, the Stanza was producing only (138hp) but getting only 10.7/8.11 L/100kms city/highway.

The flip side is that we are missing out on the REALLY fuel efficient possibilites from very small displacement engines because of the low hp. My friend had one of those fireflys and got crazy mileage in that thing, and it was the convertible one.

Apparently the Honda CRX HF was the most fuel efficient car in 1991 in the USA (that's what honda people are claiming), producing only 69 hp but got something like 56 mpg. Quote from Toronto Civics club "The VX, which also came with lightweight alloy wheels, managed fuel economy figures of 48 in the city and 55 on the highway ? nearly the same as the old CRX HF in spite of 30 more horsepower and five-passenger capability"

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I d love to get my hands on a VX... because that way I can drop a B18C1 out of a 95 Integra and it hooks right up!! no need for any wiring !! hahahahahaha!!

Yeah well... I guess we like them for DIFFERENT reasons. But seriously.. they are really neat cars and really really really rare.

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