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These comparisons are nearly impossible to do since there are so many variables. I do know that I saw a big improvement in economy when I switched from the cheapest 91 to Shell and Chevron 91. I also have found that the one tank of Chevron 87 I used last week gave the same mpg (within .3 mpg) as the previous tank of 91, also Chevron. But as they say: "Your mileage may vary".
 

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I did a 2000 mile test on my 2008 Passion Coupe, 4 tanks running 92 octane and 4 tanks running 87 octane. I got significantly better mileage with premium (41.0 mpg) than with regular grade gasoline (36.8 mpg). The mileage was enough better with premium that, even with the higher cost of premium, I got a slightly lower cost per mile with premium ($0.10) than with regular grade gasoline ($0.11).

MrJack
toussi1 said:
Has anyone done side by side comparison HI OCT vs 87 on Fuel economy?
You mean like this?^^^
 

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Book says that regular could cause the cataletic converter to overheat and cause a fire.
Yup, could be. Burning less than specified octane gas results in retarded ignition; retarded ignition results in higher exhaust gas temperatures. The cat is very close to the engine so may be easily affected by high EGT.
 

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When backed into a corner by the knowledgable reporter, Schembri had to say something to get past the moment. Why, when everything, EVERYTHING, and in every language, requires the use of the equivalent of U.S. premium? - because he was selling cars. Penske should have kicked his butt for that. Maybe he did.
 

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Okay, just a question. Where do you people live? The difference between regular and premium gas here in the Queens, NYC area is about $.40 to $.50 cents a gallon. On an eight gallon fill-up, you're talking as much as $4.00. Hardly a little amount over a years worth of fill-ups on a car that averages around 32 to 35 mpg a tankful when driven at regular traffic speeds of 65 to 70 miles per hour on the highway, and is gently accelerated when driving in the city.

Oh, yeah, I did get 49 mpg on a tankful once driving at 40 to 45 mph in the right lane on the highway, and putting the tranny in neutral and coasting a lot to red lights and stop signs during city driving. While the city coasting was not so bad, especially if I built up a little speed and could cost for several blocks before the next stop light or sign, I must say, the 40 to 45 mph on the highway was painful.

I am looking forward to the 2016 model, and am hoping it will have a true 5 or 6 speed manual transmission. But, honestly, I think I will pass on it if it requires premium gasoline.

And by the way, have any of you ever driven along I-80 to, say, a state such as Iowa? Somewhere along the line it becomes impossible to get premium gasoline. I know because when I drove with my sister and brother in my sister's 2013 Kia Sportage to my niece's house in Calmar, IA, sometime after PA all there was, was regular gas and PLUS: The PLUS being regular gas with an ethanol or MTB additive, not PLUS as in 89 octane. Thankfully, the Sportage requires regular gas, and only regular gas according to the owner's manual.

Smart car or Chevy Spark?.....take the Spark, and learn to love its looks: runs on regular gas only, and gets as good as or better mpg than the Smart; no where near as punishing either, and comes with an available 5 speed too!

However, I still have my 2009 Smart ForTwo. I find it hard to give up because it is so cute and adorable. Oh...ouch: the things a guy will put up with for cute and adorable!

And by the way, I have never put regular gas in my little cutie. Have driven it from NY to places far and wide, though; so I don't know why they call it just a city car. With a pair of head phones in place......like I said, she can be punishing in so many ways......she's a blast to drive on a smooth highway, come trucks, or most winds short of tropical storm force.
 

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jerrysmart, you do realize some of the threads you are commenting on are from 2008,

There is a website that shows where you can purchase premium gas and without ethanol. Using regular or lower octane fuel for one or two tanks will drop your mpg a bit but will not cause significant damage, just makes the computer work harder to keep things running the best it can.
 

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I am looking forward to the 2016 model, and am hoping it will have a true 5 or 6 speed manual transmission. But, honestly, I think I will pass on it if it requires premium gasoline.
Short answer, 2016 will require premium fuel.
 

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In the NYC and northeast areas premium gas can cost averagely $.30 to $.60 more per gallon than regular. That is a big difference in gasoline cost per tankful over the period of a year. I will buy a new Smart ForTwo when Mercedes designs the car to run on regular, and only regular gas.

The main reason I got rid of my 2009 Smart ForTwo was I got tired of having to spring for premium gas while my sister put recommended regular gas at much lower cost in her 2013 turbocharged (boosted) Kia Sportage.

To look at the Smart ForTwo, one would think it was capable of getting 50 mpg on the highway. It does not. The best mpg I ever got with my 2009 was 47.7 mpg doing an excruciatingly slow 40 to 45 miles per hour on the highway for the duration of one week, without cruse control I should mention. The Smart's diminutive size is hardly a good reason to buy it over cars that offer as good or better gas mileage and performance with a usable back seat and more cargo room.

I had a 2013 Chevy Spark at the same time I had my 2009 Smart. The Chevy road much better, preformed much better and got just as good or better gas mileage all on regular gas. It was also not more difficult to park in almost every situation, even in the five boroughs of NYC.

My 2009 Smart had an awful transmission, though in manual mode it was not so bad. Quite frankly, I though the transmission and engine, pretty decent, were the least of its short comings; I did not think the engine was a short coming at all because with the transmission in manual mode, the car was actually pretty zippy and easily merged on to the highway with no problem.

What were actually pretty significant shortcomings with the Smart ForTwo, on the other hand, were, one, its flexible body: For all the touting Smart did of its Trident safety cage, the car flexed and shuttered to the point where its frame less windows when rolled fully up would separate from their rubber seals during spirited maneuvers or going over rough roads. Moreover, the rolled up windows would momentarily separate from their rubber window seals when driving on the highway at higher speeds. Usually this happened if it was a bit windy and one was driving into the wind; there would be a gust of wind while driving at highway speeds, and one would hear the wind momentarily whistle during a gust, then stop as the gust subsided.

Another of these significant shortcomings were its terrible front suspension and wheel positions. While the rear of the car was usually fairly supple over rough surfaces, the front suspension was not; on roads that were a bit rough, though I am not necessarily talking about roads that had deep pot holes, but just rough broken surfaces, the front suspension would literally bang and boom. At times when it did this, it scared the heck out of me, and several times I was sure I had damaged something. Further, with regard to the front end of the car, because the front wheels were spaced so closely apart the car became a handful to keep straight when there were rutted groves in the road; if one was driving on a smooth surface at highway speeds and then came onto a rutted grooved surface at speed, it could be very disconcerting as the car pulled left and right with a mind of its own. Even the surfaces of draw bridges could greatly perturb the directional stability of my 2009 Smart ForTwo.

Now I know that for 2016 Smart has addressed most of the short comings of the Fortwo. For example, they have widened the car and the front track, and have made a dual clutch automatic and true, three pedal manual available. They have also improved the quality of materials used in the interior, and made the suspension more compliant with more travel, ect. What they have not addressed, however, is that for its size and weight the car only gets average gas mileage (30-40mpg, city/highway), and it still requires.....and take note, not recommended, but requires.....premium gas.

So, like I said earlier, I will buy a new Smart ForTwo when Mercedes designs the car to run on "required" regular gas.

You know, I went to see the 2016 at the Javits center in Manhattan during the auto show this year, and I liked it very much. I was doing a lot of reading about it and learned that in Europe different engines are available that would allow the car to get better than 50 mpg and run on regular gas. But Mercedes Benz in it wisdom thought Americans would only go for the version that is turbocharged, the lowest mpg version. Well I will reward Mercedes by not buying one: Like I said, the old Mitsubishi engine was never a problem for me with regard to its zip power, just the premium gas.
 

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I am curious to know how many 3 cylinder vehicles with a 1.0-liter engine you have ever owned in your life?

In the NYC and northeast areas premium gas can cost averagely $.30 to $.60 more per gallon than regular. That is a big difference in gasoline cost per tankful over the period of a year. I will buy a new Smart ForTwo when Mercedes designs the car to run on regular, and only regular gas.

The main reason I got rid of my 2009 Smart ForTwo was I got tired of having to spring for premium gas while my sister put recommended regular gas at much lower cost in her 2013 turbocharged (boosted) Kia Sportage.

To look at the Smart ForTwo, one would think it was capable of getting 50 mpg on the highway. It does not. The best mpg I ever got with my 2009 was 47.7 mpg doing an excruciatingly slow 40 to 45 miles per hour on the highway for the duration of one week, without cruse control I should mention. The Smart's diminutive size is hardly a good reason to buy it over cars that offer as good or better gas mileage and performance with a usable back seat and more cargo room.

I had a 2013 Chevy Spark at the same time I had my 2009 Smart. The Chevy road much better, preformed much better and got just as good or better gas mileage all on regular gas. It was also not more difficult to park in almost every situation, even in the five boroughs of NYC.

My 2009 Smart had an awful transmission, though in manual mode it was not so bad. Quite frankly, I though the transmission and engine, pretty decent, were the least of its short comings; I did not think the engine was a short coming at all because with the transmission in manual mode, the car was actually pretty zippy and easily merged on to the highway with no problem.

What were actually pretty significant shortcomings with the Smart ForTwo, on the other hand, were, one, its flexible body: For all the touting Smart did of its Trident safety cage, the car flexed and shuttered to the point where its frame less windows when rolled fully up would separate from their rubber seals during spirited maneuvers or going over rough roads. Moreover, the rolled up windows would momentarily separate from their rubber window seals when driving on the highway at higher speeds. Usually this happened if it was a bit windy and one was driving into the wind; there would be a gust of wind while driving at highway speeds, and one would hear the wind momentarily whistle during a gust, then stop as the gust subsided.

Another of these significant shortcomings were its terrible front suspension and wheel positions. While the rear of the car was usually fairly supple over rough surfaces, the front suspension was not; on roads that were a bit rough, though I am not necessarily talking about roads that had deep pot holes, but just rough broken surfaces, the front suspension would literally bang and boom. At times when it did this, it scared the heck out of me, and several times I was sure I had damaged something. Further, with regard to the front end of the car, because the front wheels were spaced so closely apart the car became a handful to keep straight when there were rutted groves in the road; if one was driving on a smooth surface at highway speeds and then came onto a rutted grooved surface at speed, it could be very disconcerting as the car pulled left and right with a mind of its own. Even the surfaces of draw bridges could greatly perturb the directional stability of my 2009 Smart ForTwo.

Now I know that for 2016 Smart has addressed most of the short comings of the Fortwo. For example, they have widened the car and the front track, and have made a dual clutch automatic and true, three pedal manual available. They have also improved the quality of materials used in the interior, and made the suspension more compliant with more travel, ect. What they have not addressed, however, is that for its size and weight the car only gets average gas mileage (30-40mpg, city/highway), and it still requires.....and take note, not recommended, but requires.....premium gas.

So, like I said earlier, I will buy a new Smart ForTwo when Mercedes designs the car to run on "required" regular gas.

You know, I went to see the 2016 at the Javits center in Manhattan during the auto show this year, and I liked it very much. I was doing a lot of reading about it and learned that in Europe different engines are available that would allow the car to get better than 50 mpg and run on regular gas. But Mercedes Benz in it wisdom thought Americans would only go for the version that is turbocharged, the lowest mpg version. Well I will reward Mercedes by not buying one: Like I said, the old Mitsubishi engine was never a problem for me with regard to its zip power, just the premium gas.
 

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Computers don't work harder to keep up if one uses regular when premium gas is required. The engine works harder. The internet consensus is, from many different sources, that if one uses regular gas when premium is REQUIRED, gas mileage will suffer, and at the least overtime some components will ware out faster even if outright engine damage does not occur; engine damage in the long run does remain a possibility.
 

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My 2009 runs like a cement truck on 87.
Generally I use 89, but I spike it with a quart of E85 (85% ethanol) to boost the octane.

Recently been using a quart of Sunoco Race Gas, 260 GTX, 98 octane, per ten gallons...
http://www.sunocoracefuels.com/fuel/260-gtx
While it's expensive, $60 for 5 gallons, (and $3 for a kerosene pump),
in the long run, it's way cheaper than octane booster in a bottle...
Compare Fuels - Sunoco Race Fuels
 

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Computers don't work harder to keep up if one uses regular when premium gas is required. The engine works harder. The internet consensus is, from many different sources, that if one uses regular gas when premium is REQUIRED, gas mileage will suffer, and at the least overtime some components will ware out faster even if outright engine damage does not occur; engine damage in the long run does remain a possibility.
The reason I asked if you have owned any 1.0-liter 3 cylinder cars before, is because in order for them to be appreciated, you generally have to have an understanding of how engine technology works. I have yet to see one 3-cylinder car with 1.0-liter engine, from any manufacturer, that hasn't been criticized for power, air conditioning, idle quality, hill climbing, acceleration, etc,. There's always *something* folks will complain about.

It's an engineering challenge to satisfy everybody. It's a complex combination of decision making. Do you use regular fuel, and lower engine compression, which sacrifices engine power? Do you increase a/c compressor output to make a stronger a/c unit, while harming acceleration or climbing power? Do you opt for slightly higher rpm at idle while burning more fuel, sacrificing fuel economy?

When you're the only car company developing a 1.0-liter engine, you tend to be on your own island making the decisions. I still own a Geo Metro XFi, which achieved 55 mpg's on 87 octane. But it was a 5-speed stick shift. Most people won't drive a true stick shift. The automatic at the time was large, heavy, and robbed the fuel economy down to 36 City and 39 Highway. Its engine had 52 horsepower and 58 lbs-ft of torque. It was arguably the same fuel economy of a 2008 to 2015 smart, which developed 70 horsepower and 68 lbs-ft of torque (fuel economy was 33 City and 41 Highway or 34 City/38 Highway depending on year of evaluation). The smart used a manual based transmission, but self-shifting manual gearbox that determined gear based on engine load/rpms, throttle pressure input, and whether the vehicle was headed uphill or downhill. That was heavily driver dependent. Some drivers were good at using it, others needed coaching.

Thankfully though, I'm discussing old 3-cylinder tech based on naturally aspirated configurations. Currently, the best tiny engines are being turbocharged. The new smart is turbocharged. It's a huge difference, especially when mated to the dual clutch transmissions.
 

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My smart used 87 Octane for 20,000 miles. Yes, blasphemy, I know :p I did what I had to do to get by on less than no monies. But now Tucker is being fed the good stuff again :)

Anyway, during that time? I noticed the engine was louder and more shaky, but otherwise delivered about the same economy that it does on 93. Performance did suffer a tad, the engine seemed less responsive, but overall similar.
 

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Thanks for your quick response! I hadn't found anything newer than several years ago on using a different grade of gas, so appreciate the input. And will do!!
 
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