My first hybrid

EmmaKav
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby EmmaKav » Mon Dec 09, 2013 2:41 pm

Hi Ian,

thanks for the all the details, much appreciated! :)

my fuelly profile is in it's early days at the moment, but it's here http://www.fuelly.com/driver/emkav/yaris-hybrid if anyone's interested.

The 62mpg on the test drive was just for the route we took, it was reset before we left (mostly urban with a little bit of open road), I bet the engine was well warmed up though as I think they were doing quite a lot of hybrid test drives at the time.

MPG gradually improving - helped somewhat by doing what you describe - getting to speed at a reasonable rate then easing right off to let the electric kick in. Haven't quite made it to 50 mph on electric yet :) but not far off (interesting because the stuff you read on the web about the Yaris talks about electric only up to 15 mph which clearly isn't the case - unless they mean with the EV button?). You're right about the hills, it doesn't like to do them without petrol! Not too hilly around here thankfully.

Up to about almost 50 mpg on a longish average now (have managed 58 mpg max on an individual trip 1/3 major A-road, 2/3 country lanes - I put a lot of effort into this and managed to get quite a lot of electric use on the rural by doing about 40 mph on the nice quiet roads, I don't think I could get much more than that though), normal weekly driving is probably 50/50 dual carriageway/urban with 2 adults in the car. The dual carriageway is a pain but hard to avoid.

I haven't got the tyres pumped all the way up to the "ECO" setting in the handbook yet - they're about halfway between normal and ECO right now. Slightly worried about slippery winter roads and very hard tyres, but I may yet do this since the manufacturer does sort of recommend it, all be it with a warning about different handling)

It's always on the ECO driving setting.

One interesting thing I've noticed in the last month or so - when we start up in the morning at the moment (December) that even if the battery meter reckons it's got good charge (well over 1/2) then the electric won't kick in very easily at all until the engine (or maybe the batteries?) has warmed up a bit. (This is without the screen blowers and other things on that might put extra load on the battery). Pretty sure it didn't do this when the weather was warmer. Anyone else noticed this?

I've been avoiding using the brakes as much as possible, trying to make best use of the momentum. The little (addictive!) energy diagram does show energy going to the battery even without the brakes on. (Have been wondering about this a lot - at what point does the car know to start generating electricity from the wheels rather than using the electricity to drive the wheels? Is it when you touch the brake or when you take your foot off the accelerator? - from watching the energy diagram I would say it is the accelerator. If this is the case then using the brake pedal actually decreases the available energy to the battery because some of the the energy will be lost as heat into the friction brakes...). I haven't been looking at the "CHG" bit of the power meter much - will pay more attention to this!

Our other car is a Toyota Avensis Tourer (2007) - combined mpg figure quoted is 39.2 mpg (30.1 urban), our use stays very steady at about 37.5 mpg. Previous car was Ford Focus (2001) with similar figures (39.8 mpg combined, 30.1 urban) and we would get an average of 38 mpg. I realise the current mpg tests are more unrealistic than for these older cars, but I was still hoping to get nearer to 60 mpg in the hybrid.

Was your best journey (the 72mpg one) mostly urban?

I'm really enjoying driving the Yaris, I think it's a great little car, just a bit disappointed I can't tweak more mpg out of it! I shall keep trying! :)

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frv
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby frv » Mon Dec 09, 2013 3:11 pm

Thanks for the update Emma - i've added you as a friend on Fuelly - this is me: http://www.fuelly.com/driver/frv/frv.
With a bit of work and practicing some of the techniques on here and some of Ian's findings you should get up into the 50's soon :D
Winter temperatures will always drag your mpg down - it's just something we have to live with!
'15 Audi A3 Sportback SE CoD S-Tronic - 5+ year average 55+mpg
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IanLorenc
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby IanLorenc » Fri Dec 13, 2013 10:06 pm

Hi Ian,

thanks for the all the details, much appreciated! :)

my fuelly profile is in it's early days at the moment, but it's here http://www.fuelly.com/driver/emkav/yaris-hybrid if anyone's interested.
No problem, now added on Fuelly. I see your last fill-up yesterday (12/12) just nudged over the 50 mark! :-)

The 62mpg on the test drive was just for the route we took, it was reset before we left (mostly urban with a little bit of open road), I bet the engine was well warmed up though as I think they were doing quite a lot of hybrid test drives at the time.
No question that it would have been warmed up. I wish I'd thought to reset before my test drive.

MPG gradually improving - helped somewhat by doing what you describe - getting to speed at a reasonable rate then easing right off to let the electric kick in. Haven't quite made it to 50 mph on electric yet :) but not far off (interesting because the stuff you read on the web about the Yaris talks about electric only up to 15 mph which clearly isn't the case - unless they mean with the EV button?). You're right about the hills, it doesn't like to do them without petrol! Not too hilly around here thankfully.
How fast can it go in electric mode? How far can it go in electric mode? I think the problem Toyota have, is that there's not really a clear-cut answer to those questions, more sort of a "actually, it depends" kind of answer.
How fast? Well, I've tried accelerating in 'EV Mode' from a stop, and I got to about 30, before finding the PE wants to cut in. However, as we know, petrol your way up to 40 and the electric can hold it from there.
How far? I've not tried, but I'd estimate that from a stop - not slowing or braking at any point - a full battery SOC might make just under a mile? However, I have about a mile (1.1m, actually) of imperceptibly slight downhill on my way home from work. I can go into that with full battery, at about 40 and go into EV. At the end, I can have covered that distance using only 1 or 2 bars of battery.
Also (unless it's been changed since my complaint!), the website says that the Yaris Hybrid comes with a solar panel roof, which of course it doesn't...but it'd be so cool, if it did!

Up to about almost 50 mpg on a longish average now (have managed 58 mpg max on an individual trip 1/3 major A-road, 2/3 country lanes - I put a lot of effort into this and managed to get quite a lot of electric use on the rural by doing about 40 mph on the nice quiet roads, I don't think I could get much more than that though), normal weekly driving is probably 50/50 dual carriageway/urban with 2 adults in the car. The dual carriageway is a pain but hard to avoid.
What kind of limits do the D/Cs have? Are they mere 40s, or are they 50s or above? If they're 50, 60, or 70, then I see that it could be tricky.
You probably already do, and I don't fully understand the display, but when I'm on the PE, I try to keep the energy diagram so that the green arrows at the wheels - ahead of the electric motor - don't show. Just the red arrows going to wheels, and back to a green arrow, to the battery.

I haven't got the tyres pumped all the way up to the "ECO" setting in the handbook yet - they're about halfway between normal and ECO right now. Slightly worried about slippery winter roads and very hard tyres, but I may yet do this since the manufacturer does sort of recommend it, all be it with a warning about different handling)
I've done this briefly, and I wouldn't recommend it. It didn't seem to make any difference to the FE, but it did make the handling/braking very sketchy in the wet. Maybe in the summer, I'll try it again...but winter? No, no, no, no, no.

One interesting thing I've noticed in the last month or so - when we start up in the morning at the moment (December) that even if the battery meter reckons it's got good charge (well over 1/2) then the electric won't kick in very easily at all until the engine (or maybe the batteries?) has warmed up a bit. (This is without the screen blowers and other things on that might put extra load on the battery). Pretty sure it didn't do this when the weather was warmer. Anyone else noticed this?
When the PE runs for the first time (from a cold start), it will want to run for a short while, despite efforts to make it shut off. However, with the blower off, it shouldn't take that long for the PE to do it's initial thing. Do you know roughly how long, in distance or time? I happen to remember from this morning, where my PE started and where it was happy to turn off, and checking using online maps, it was about 0.8 miles (or about 2.5 minutes). That was with no blower, though it was quite warm at 5 this morning - about 11C - so maybe I'll check this again when it's slightly cooler.
I live on a side street, off a side street, off a side street, and so I like to make sure I have at least 4 bars battery SOC, so that in the morning, I can make it all the way to the main road, before letting the PE cut in.
I've been avoiding using the brakes as much as possible, trying to make best use of the momentum. The little (addictive!) energy diagram does show energy going to the battery even without the brakes on. (Have been wondering about this a lot - at what point does the car know to start generating electricity from the wheels rather than using the electricity to drive the wheels? Is it when you touch the brake or when you take your foot off the accelerator? - from watching the energy diagram I would say it is the accelerator. If this is the case then using the brake pedal actually decreases the available energy to the battery because some of the the energy will be lost as heat into the friction brakes...). I haven't been looking at the "CHG" bit of the power meter much - will pay more attention to this!
Definitely from the moment the accelerator is released.
I might be wrong (everything I say, could be wrong!), but as far as I'm aware, when it comes to braking, it's all regenerative unless:
1. You apply the brakes with sufficient force, to send the Power Indicator dial all the way down to the bottom of the CHG slice.
2. You're braking from 7mph or below (so the final act of bringing the car to a complete stop, will be friction brakes).
The energy diagram IS addictive!...and I also think it's located in entirely the wrong place, in the centre of the dash. If I were the designer, I would have changed the large analogue speedometer for a smaller, digital one and located a smaller version of the ED, in the main instrument binnacle, in front of the driver.

Our other car is a Toyota Avensis Tourer (2007) - combined mpg figure quoted is 39.2 mpg (30.1 urban), our use stays very steady at about 37.5 mpg. Previous car was Ford Focus (2001) with similar figures (39.8 mpg combined, 30.1 urban) and we would get an average of 38 mpg. I realise the current mpg tests are more unrealistic than for these older cars, but I was still hoping to get nearer to 60 mpg in the hybrid.
Not bad figures at all. I'm in complete agreement that it was easier to match/beat official MPG figures in older cars (see my sig pic!).
I think you can get up to 60mpg...especially when the weather warms up again.
As for me, well I can get early 60s...but I want late 60s, or even early 70s! Speaking of which...

Was your best journey (the 72mpg one) mostly urban?
That 72.1mpg, might be a bit of a swizz, as it was a very short journey (just over 2 miles) in moderate-to-heavy traffic. Even so, I like laying claim to it though.

I'm really enjoying driving the Yaris, I think it's a great little car, just a bit disappointed I can't tweak more mpg out of it! I shall keep trying! :)
With a couple of slight reservations, I'm enjoying the Yaris Hybrid too!
1. I think the interior feels a bit cheap and/or flimsy.
2. I think the headlights are terrible...certainly compared to the Fiesta before it.
3. I experience an occasional problem with the stereo.
Otherwise, all good!
Cheers.
Ian.

Guzzlin' them green volts.
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IanLorenc
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby IanLorenc » Fri Dec 13, 2013 10:09 pm

Fingers crossed, this tank looks to be still doing okay. More or less 300 miles, at the 3/8 fuel gauge mark.
We'll see what it ends up as, though...probably towards the end of next week:
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Cheers.
Ian.

Guzzlin' them green volts.
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IanLorenc
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby IanLorenc » Wed Feb 05, 2014 7:08 pm

It's only over about five and a half miles (so not time to celebrate just yet), but I got my best observed single trip MPG, last night (snapped pic this morning).
On the way back from the petrol station, taking in the drive-thru on the way, somehow managed to eke 73.2mpg. Don't ask me what I did, because I wasn't paying particular attention to driving carefully.

Image

It's already started to fall, however (currently at 65.4).
This is my second tankful of Shell's Fuelsave unleaded, and whilst it's too early to draw conclusions, the car does seem to prefer it.
Cheers.
Ian.

Guzzlin' them green volts.
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EmmaKav
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Joined: Mon Oct 07, 2013 12:23 pm

Re: My first hybrid

Postby EmmaKav » Wed Feb 26, 2014 9:21 pm

My Yaris Hybrid seems to have decided it's done enough miles now and suddenly seems to be behaving like I hoped it would! (done over 2700 miles now since October) :D

Average MPG figures massively improved - today got best ever at 75.5mpg!! Same 25min trip a few months back just about scraped up to 58.9 mpg with me trying really hard! I'm a little suspicious actually, change seems very sudden, although I haven't been averaging individual trips much recently until surprise trip after last fuel up got much better mpg than I'd got used to. I'm going to wait for next couple of Fuelly data points before being convinced that mpg really is now much better (half wondering if there's a glitch in the ave mpg software on the car or if it's magically found itself an extra battery!!)

So good news I think, we'll have to wait and see!

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frv
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby frv » Thu Feb 27, 2014 8:09 am

Excellent Emma :D
Could outside temperature have anything to do with it? I haven't got a hybrid by my car gets a lot worse MPG when it 6°C or lower - I call it a cold hit.

Also on-board computers (FCD) are usually wrong and generally over optimistic. My car seems to be an anomoly as it's generally under actual so worth doing a brim to brim check to see how yours fares.
'15 Audi A3 Sportback SE CoD S-Tronic - 5+ year average 55+mpg
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(Retired) '06 Honda FR-V 2.2 i-CTDi - Best/longest tank: 67.92mpg (+51.6%) / 815.5 miles.

IanLorenc
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby IanLorenc » Tue May 20, 2014 5:56 pm

As I mentioned to FRV, in a PM on Fuelly...

I started using the instant mpg readout recently, and I discovered that the car is very uneconomical when the petrol engine is running, and helping to charge the batteries. In these circumstances, cruising between 30 and 55mph, returns an instant readout of between 40-50mpg.
However, once the batteries are full, cruising at those same speeds returns an instant mpg of between 60-99.9+mpg.
I was 100 miles or so into my current tank of fuel, averaging 62.9mpg, when I decided to try using the petrol engine as much as possible, saving the batteries for slow speed manoeuvres and any jams I encountered (I'm also trying to get better at pulse and gliding, and what I call "stealth-glides" - no arrows showing on HSD screen).
Straight away, the average started to come up.

As of writing this, the trip computer says I'm averaging 66.8mpg, and that's over 291 miles.
I'll let you know how this goes. Unless you're a Fuelly friend, in which case you'll immediately see, when I fill it up.

Interestingly, in America, the Yaris Hybrid is called the Prius c (different styling and instruments, but everything else the same). My point for raising this, is that perhaps our Euro economy tests are way out, as the US EPA fuel tests rate the car at 50mpg (US), which is 60mpg, UK. Which I've found to be spot on, and achievable without resorting to hypermile driving techniques.
Cheers.
Ian.

Guzzlin' them green volts.
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frv
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby frv » Wed May 21, 2014 10:33 am

I think you've hit the hybrid nail on the head Ian :D

I've found this blog from a guy in the States: http://blog.chron.com/techblog/2013/02/ ... like-that/
'15 Audi A3 Sportback SE CoD S-Tronic - 5+ year average 55+mpg
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(Retired) '06 Honda FR-V 2.2 i-CTDi - Best/longest tank: 67.92mpg (+51.6%) / 815.5 miles.

EmmaKav
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Re: My first hybrid

Postby EmmaKav » Tue Jul 29, 2014 3:25 pm

Finally tipped over the 60mpg mark on Fuelly :-) . A few nice longish, mostly rural, trips offset the usual 15/20 min trips to and from work which don't seem to be great for economy (dual carriageway before warmed up on the way in and power sucking hill early on the way home).

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