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Looking for help from Freeper auto mechanics (VANITY)
Self | 8/26/12 | Alberta's Child

Posted on 08/26/2012 5:59:49 PM PDT by Alberta's Child

I'm in the market for a small car (new or late model "pre-owned"), and I've come across a peculiar bit of information for one of the vehicles I'm considering. Why would a small car with a 2.5-liter engine and a 6-speed automatic transmission have a slightly higher EPA fuel rating than the same car with the same engine and a 6-speed manual transmission?

I typically prefer a manual transmission for small cars, but I'm not sure that this would be the case for this type of vehicle (a Mazda3 with Mazda's SkyActiv technology). This one has me stumped, folks.

P.S. I would use this primarily for local and short-distance driving. My 2007 F-150 is in fantastic shape and serves as my business/long-haul driving vehicle.


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: automobiles; vanity
Any help that can be offered would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
1 posted on 08/26/2012 5:59:58 PM PDT by Alberta's Child
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To: Alberta's Child

Looks like we’re going automotive tonight.


2 posted on 08/26/2012 6:02:17 PM PDT by Chickensoup (STOP The Great O-ppression)
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To: Alberta's Child
Two words (OK three)

Honda or Toyota

3 posted on 08/26/2012 6:03:54 PM PDT by China Clipper ( Animals? Sure I like animals. See? There they are, right next to the potatoes!)
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To: Alberta's Child

Since automatics outsell manuals by a huge margin (in America) the manufacturer will often devote more engineering resources to optimizing that engine/trans package.

When every tenth of a mpg counts (for CAFE) you put your effort where the sales are.


4 posted on 08/26/2012 6:05:06 PM PDT by nascarnation (Defeat Baraq 2012. Deport Baraq 2013)
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To: China Clipper

That would be a strong option if I were buying the car. However, there’s a good chance I’m going to lease it instead ... which means reliability and long-term value aren’t as important in the long run.


5 posted on 08/26/2012 6:05:49 PM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: Alberta's Child

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2923194/posts?page=3


6 posted on 08/26/2012 6:06:21 PM PDT by Chickensoup (STOP The Great O-ppression)
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To: Alberta's Child

Yes, it’s possible. You can look up stats for the particular model either on the manufacturer’s web-site, or something like edmunds.com.

For example, have a Toyota Tacoma with a 6-speed manual. The automatic has a slightly higher EPA MPG rating because the final-drive ratio is lower on the automatic (lower engine speed required to maintain the same speed).


7 posted on 08/26/2012 6:10:52 PM PDT by Be Free (Liberalism is a disease.)
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To: Alberta's Child

“Modern” automatics are electronically controlled and typically programmed for maximum fuel efficiency. Since almost no one drives the way they want you to your mileage will vary from the advertised specs.


8 posted on 08/26/2012 6:15:44 PM PDT by rockrr (Everything is different now...)
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To: Alberta's Child

First: Having several Mazdas sitting in my driveway and having owned them for many miles (Including a Mazda3) I will tell you that NOTHING is as fun to drive as a Mazda for the money. Nothing even comes close.

Second: To answer your question -

Think of today’s automatic transmission as a manual that is shifted very quickly by a computer. That idea is why they can get better mileage than you or I can by doing it ourselves.

That being said, I prefer a manual to an automatic. But that’s just me.

(If Mazda would wipe that stupid grin off the Mazda3’s face I would replace my 2007 Mazda3 with a new one)


9 posted on 08/26/2012 6:17:07 PM PDT by Nik Naym (It's not my fault... I have compulsive smartass disorder.)
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To: Be Free

Thanks! That might explain a lot. I’m trying to track down some data about the gear ratios, but I’m having a hard time finding an online resource that lists the manual and automatic transmissions separately.


10 posted on 08/26/2012 6:18:38 PM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: Nik Naym
Great insight -- thanks!

The vehicle this one would replace is sort of a Mazda, and I would agree with you except it's not exactly a "real" Mazda. It's a Mazda Navajo -- built by Ford up until the mid-1990s as a clone of the Ford Explorer -- and it's got 355,000+ miles on it. Original engine and transmission, and no major repairs except for an overhaul of the front suspension at around 200,000 miles.

You'd be hard-pressed to find a better value in a vehicle, eh?

Interesting about the "stupid grin" comment. One of the customer reviews I read about it said something like: "What's with the Mazda3 and the "Froggie Went A-Courtin'" look? LOL.

11 posted on 08/26/2012 6:23:29 PM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: rockrr

Interesting. Thank you!


12 posted on 08/26/2012 6:24:43 PM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: Alberta's Child

Different tires sizes. Larger tires make for better mileage.


13 posted on 08/26/2012 6:37:58 PM PDT by GenXteacher (You have chosen dishonor to avoid war; you shall have war also.)
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To: Alberta's Child
Years ago the Feds started to change the testing regime to favor automatic transmissions. Automatics were becoming better at shifting and getting better mileage but also manual transmissions are purchased by people who love to drive and want the freedom to shift when they want.

You must understand the government is smart enough to nibble away a small freedoms to make us comfortable with the shackles they are putting on us.

14 posted on 08/26/2012 6:41:56 PM PDT by OldMissileer
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To: Alberta's Child

Take a look at the Mazdaspeed 3. Quite a bang for the buck.


15 posted on 08/26/2012 6:46:11 PM PDT by Usually_Disappointed (I think the tree of liberty is getting thirsty...)
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To: Alberta's Child

It use to be that manual transmissions got better fuel mileage than automatics. This was mostly due to an approximately 20% slip rate in the torque convertor on the automatic. Modern automatic transmissions have a lock up torque convertor that eliminates that advantage. Combine that with shifting that is computer controlled and learns your driving habits to maximize efficiency and there it is.


16 posted on 08/26/2012 6:47:35 PM PDT by stratplayer
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To: Alberta's Child

So, you are admitting on FR that you are not a patriot and are considering buying a foreign automobile?

Get a Ford. The only American automobile mfr. left that didn’t need a bailout.


17 posted on 08/26/2012 6:57:15 PM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (I wanna start a Seniors' Motor Scooter Gang. Wanna join?)
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To: Nik Naym

That stupid Mazda grin will be gone in 2013.


18 posted on 08/26/2012 7:00:29 PM PDT by al_c (http://www.blowoutcongress.com)
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise

I bought a Mazda6 last year. It was built in Detroit by American workers. But alas ... their relationship with Ford is over and the next generation will be built in Japan.


19 posted on 08/26/2012 7:02:42 PM PDT by al_c (http://www.blowoutcongress.com)
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To: Alberta's Child

higher rear end ratio!!


20 posted on 08/26/2012 7:08:47 PM PDT by ontap
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To: Alberta's Child

Modern autos are far superior to their older cousins. Not only do they often give higher fuel economy, they sometimes are quicker to accelerate than a manual.


21 posted on 08/26/2012 7:11:43 PM PDT by ltc8k6
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To: Alberta's Child
My 2012 Ford Focus hatchback is the same way...the dual-clutch transmission (DCT) is basically an automatic manual - it shifts more efficiently and faster than a human can.

There is no torque converter like traditional autos...just an electronic gearbox and two clutches that are predicted to last 150,000 miles.

22 posted on 08/26/2012 7:18:23 PM PDT by scott7278 ("...I have not changed Congress and how it operates the way I would have liked..." - BHO)
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise; Alberta's Child

“Get a Ford. The only American automobile mfr...”

...that supported the Nazi’s in the 30’s & 40’s.


23 posted on 08/26/2012 7:18:41 PM PDT by GGpaX4DumpedTea (I am a Tea Party descendant...steeped in the Constitutional Republic given to us by the Founders.)
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To: Alberta's Child

Several FReepers have it. The manual has a 4.11 final drive ratio while the auto has a 3.46.

The Car and Driver web site, and probably many others, list the gear ratios and many other tech details in their Buyer’s Guide section.


24 posted on 08/26/2012 7:18:59 PM PDT by jjotto ("Ya could look it up!")
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To: Alberta's Child

Just FYI on automatic transmissions:

Formula One racing, which uses state-of-the-art technology, hasn’t seen a manual transmission entry for about 15 years.


25 posted on 08/26/2012 7:32:51 PM PDT by jjotto ("Ya could look it up!")
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To: Alberta's Child

AC, if you are going to lease, I would recommend a Hyundai Elantra which gets about 40+ mpg.

YOu can none for about $ 200/mo. with $ 2,000 down. Some delers run specials where you don’t even have to pay any money down. Includes 12,000 mi.

It is a very well equipped car for the money.Stylish too.

Daughter has one.

We have a 2011 Sonata that we leased. One of the best cars we have ever had.


26 posted on 08/26/2012 7:46:33 PM PDT by exit82 (Pass the word: Obama is a FAILURE!! Democrats are the enemies of freedom!)
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To: GGpaX4DumpedTea; spel_grammer_an_punct_polise; Alberta's Child
...that supported the Nazi’s in the 30’s & 40’s.

Don't blame Ford, blame FDR for allowing American companies to do business with the Nazis and Imperial Japanese.

27 posted on 08/26/2012 8:39:16 PM PDT by fso301
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To: fso301

“Don’t blame Ford, blame FDR...”

Henry et al did it with ‘eyes wide open’.

And we could stretch that to a number of others, including Prescott Bush.


28 posted on 08/26/2012 8:42:20 PM PDT by GGpaX4DumpedTea (I am a Tea Party descendant...steeped in the Constitutional Republic given to us by the Founders.)
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To: Alberta's Child

Different gear ratios would be my guess. (just a guess)


29 posted on 08/26/2012 9:20:46 PM PDT by Figment
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise

Hate to break it to you. Ford and Mazda share a lot in common. Including many of the 4 cylinder powertrains..


30 posted on 08/26/2012 9:55:42 PM PDT by cableguymn
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To: cableguymn

A ranger pickup and a Mazda pickup look an awful lot alike.


31 posted on 08/26/2012 10:02:03 PM PDT by Lurkina.n.Learnin (Ignorance is bliss- I'm stoked)
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To: GGpaX4DumpedTea

“...that supported the Nazi’s in the 30’s & 40’s.”

Wake up! It’s 2012.

Many people and companies supported the Nazis either outright or left-handedly by being against the war, like Charles Lindbergh.


32 posted on 08/26/2012 11:11:10 PM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (I wanna start a Seniors' Motor Scooter Gang. Wanna join?)
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To: cableguymn

“Hate to break it to you. Ford and Mazda share a lot in common. Including many of the 4 cylinder powertrains..”

The last I heard, Ford is still a good, ol’ ‘Murican company, owned by good, ol’ ‘Muricans. :-)


33 posted on 08/26/2012 11:14:24 PM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (I wanna start a Seniors' Motor Scooter Gang. Wanna join?)
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise
I've owned two new vehicles in 25 years of driving. One of them is a 2007 Ford F-150 that I still use for business. The other is a Mazda Navajo that is on its last legs at the age of 18 years and 355,000+ miles. The Mazda was built in a Ford plant and is basically a Ford with the exception of the Mazda emblem. Ford and Mazda have joint ventures all over the auto industry even to this day (the European version of the Mazda3 is built at a Ford plant in Portugal, for example).

In the U.S. today many "foreign" cars are built in U.S. plants ... while a "domestic" car is just as likely to be built in Canada or Mexico.

The Ford Focus would be the small car I'd consider. It's OK and seems like a good car, but the Mazda has superior fuel efficiency even with better performance, and the Focus has too much "road noise" for my liking. Interestingly, about 60% of the components are identical in the Ford Focus and Mazda3 (and one or two Volvo models, too).

I buy trucks. I prefer to lease small cars. I'll buy or lease whatever gets me the best value. There's nothing patriotic about hiding behind an "American" corporate logo that has little or no meaning in the global world of auto manufacturing.

34 posted on 08/27/2012 2:18:00 AM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: Alberta's Child

“However, there’s a good chance I’m going to lease it instead”

A lease is a hole to throw money in. You pay up front to rent a car for X years and then pay a large sum to return it.


35 posted on 08/27/2012 2:30:48 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you really want to annoy someone, point out something obvious that they are trying hard to ignore)
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To: AppyPappy
Under normal circumstances I'd agree with you, but for my situation where low mileage, short-term use

This is why I usually prefer to buy trucks, and consider leasing small cars. I keep trucks for a long time and drive them 15,000+ miles per year. Residual value is not an issue to me because I drive them into the ground. My circumstances are likely to change after three years when it comes to this car, and I'll probably drive it 8,000-10,000 miles per year.

36 posted on 08/27/2012 3:15:17 AM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: Usually_Disappointed
Take a look at the Mazdaspeed 3. Quite a bang for the buck.

But ugly as sin. What the heck were the designers thinking when they put that big, stupid grin on the front?

37 posted on 08/27/2012 3:29:36 AM PDT by Fresh Wind ('People have got to know whether or not their president is a crook.' Richard M. Nixon)
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise

yes. But Ford and Mazda have been sharing power trains for years.

Remember the B2000 and Courier? The B2300 and Ranger? Look the same? hmmmmmm wonder why.

I had a Mazda 5. Had a Ford engine in it..


38 posted on 08/27/2012 5:33:10 AM PDT by cableguymn
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To: Lurkina.n.Learnin

Both rolled out of a plant in Saint Paul.


39 posted on 08/27/2012 5:34:15 AM PDT by cableguymn
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To: Alberta's Child

“There’s nothing patriotic about hiding behind an “American” corporate logo...”

Everyone is entitled to an opinion, be it right or wrong.


40 posted on 08/27/2012 10:24:19 AM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (I wanna start a Seniors' Motor Scooter Gang. Wanna join?)
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To: cableguymn

I’ve owned only one Ford in my life and that was an F-150. I didn’t like it and sold it years ago, although it was “tough” as advertised.

Otherwise, I had always owned GMC products. However, after Obemba and the unions took over GMC, I vowed to never again own a GMC product, period...and to buy only Ford products because they are the only American owned and operated car mfr. Whether or not they have some kind of agreement with Mazda or the devil is immaterial. They are American owned and operated.

You are another one who is not patriotic, eh? Don’t get all offended. I’m joking! :-)


41 posted on 08/27/2012 10:32:48 AM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (I wanna start a Seniors' Motor Scooter Gang. Wanna join?)
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise

I drive what works for me.

I have had Fords (econoline) and did not like the 1960’s suspension systems they where still using in the early 2000’s (I think they are STILL using them) I also did not like the fact that they extended them behind the rear axle.

Hence, I drive GM extended vans because they extend them in the middle and because when loaded the front tires don’t camber in like a upside down V.

Also, I am *not* a fan of the 5.4 V8. The early ones the spark plugs (with threads) would come out while your driving, the later 3 valve ones the plugs would seize in and break when you tried to remove um.

I don’t like GM’s politics but I do think they have figured a few things out Ford does not care to.

I need a truck that starts and does what I need it to. GM offers this to me.

I still won’t by a post bail out GM. So I hope Ford figures it out or my next van will be a Benz.


42 posted on 08/27/2012 2:19:11 PM PDT by cableguymn
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To: spel_grammer_an_punct_polise
Sure. But your post said: "Get a Ford." That's not an opinion; that's a command.

I don't take orders from anyone here on FR. LOL. ;-)

43 posted on 08/27/2012 4:18:22 PM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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