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Overall Average MPG In A Stude

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  • #16
    I was (am) a compulsive obsessive record keeper. When I bought my '61 Cruiser new in January '61 I started a log of all gasoline purchased. When I traded it in on the Wagonaire in May, 1964 my log computed to an overall mileage of 18.65 mpg for 65,000 miles. It was a 259 automatic, two-barrel, 3.31 open rear, air conditioned. It had only ever been equipped with 6.50x15 bias ply tires so I don't think the odometer error could have been much. Driving included a 25-mile round trip commute in an urban environment for two years and several long cross-country trips. One shorter cross-country trip (Rhode Island to mid-NY state) computed to 23 mpg.
    I have never computed the overall mileage on my '64 Wagonaire (259, two-barrel, overdrive w/3.73 TT rear, air conditioned, 775x15 bias ply tires), but coming home from a South Bend International in the '70s, I got 23.1 mpg for the eastbound trip (uncorrected for odometer error).
    I'm a believer in 3.07 rear ends (since I'm not in to drag racing). For our chapter Route 66 trip in 2003 (6,000 miles) I swapped the 3.73 open rear for a 3.07 open on my '64 R-2 Powershift Avanti (engine bored .060). My overall mpg for the trip was ~16mpg and nearly half the trip was run on bad spark plug wires (long story). I was running 225x75x15 radials so my odometer error computed to approximately one percent low (traveled 10.1 miles with the odometer registering 10 miles). When I bought the car and drove it from the Bay Area of California to near Washington, DC (with the 3.73) I got about 12 mpg and the noise level driving at western speeds was painful (the AM-FM radio was a waste because you couldn't hear it). Before the last South Bend International I changed my present R-1 Avanti from a 3.54 TT to a 3.07 TT. I haven't taken time to compute the average, but it sure was quieter at highway speeds.
    Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia.
    '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Avanti R-1, Museum R-4 engine, '72 Gravely Model 430 with Onan engine


    • #17
      Supposedly my '40 gets 27 and 1/4MPG from the factory. The car still has a stock Champion 6 and a three speed with OD. I can believe that it gets over 25mpg. A tank of gas lasts a really long time in that car.
      Chris Dresbach


      • #18
        Something surely is wrong... I used to get 18-24mpg in a '63 Lark Regal w/ 259/FOM...


        • #19
          Originally posted by Neil View Post
          Back in 1970,I was in the Army stationed at Ft Lee Virginia.I bough ta plain jane 62 GT Hawk from a fellow in my unit.It was289.2brl,power steering,auto,307 twin trk rear end with 102thousand miles on it .When I had a weekend with no duty,I would driveit home the300 plus miles to Penna. I was used to my other GTs 15/17 miles per gal and was somewhat dismayed to see the gas gauge not moving like I was expecting .At 186miles into the trip I stopped at a gas station to fill it up and it only took 9 gal,could no get any more into it. That came out to more than 20 mpg.Other trips got the same milage,20 to bestof 22mpg.

          I used to travel from DC to RI regularly in my Power Hawk, (3speed/od), and averaged 25mpg or better. Used less that a tank of gas in each direction. Of course that was back when gas was of a decent formulation but I still got better than 24 mpg in a road trip a couple of years ago.


          • #20
            I too am obsessive about mileage records. My '55 land cruiser is equipped with an original 4 bbl, single exhaust and 250 M transmission, a 3.31 rear axle and 215.75.R15 tires. When I first put it on the road 3 years ago it averaged 15.11 with a best of 17.58 on regular gas. For the past year I've been using 89 octane gas, averaging 16.01 with a best of 17.65. The 89 oct. gives an improvement of 6%, or 23 cents per gallon. When 89 is $.10 more than regular i'm making $.13 per gallon. Almost all driving is rural Ohio and town.
            The best I've gotten on my '53 coupe, 232, OD, Duals, 4.54 RA and same sized tires, regular gas is 26.03. averaging 20.75.
            Last edited by Tom Bredehoft; 03-12-2013, 03:34 PM. Reason: Correct decimal placement.


            • #21
              Originally posted by avantilover View Post
              Have you checked the carburettor Clark? I had that issue and it turned out the choke plate was on permanently, thus causing the issue.
              I know the choke is working properly, but I suspect the wrong metering rods are installed. I need to open it up and find out.

              Clark in San Diego | '63 Standard (F2) "Barney" |


              • #22
                Not to totally derail the thread, but what's the ballpark cost for an already rebuilt carb for a '63 259? I'd love to take the time to properly rebuild mine. The problem is that I don't have a lot of time and I actually use my Lark as a daily driver, so I'd need something to put in it's place while I do that.
                '63 Lark Custom, 259 v8, auto, child seat

                "Your friendly neighborhood Studebaker evangelist"


                • #23
                  i got around 22mpg in the '40. no overdrive, and mostly city driving, but the "main drag" to town is 55mph - so she got close to "wound-up" quite a bit.

                  i reckon the '63 Avanti doesn't count since it had a '89 Corvette engine and 350 trans - but it got around 14mpg - and she saw quite a bit more than 55mph...

                  can't check the '51 until i get the speedometer/odometer working and replace the gasket on the fuel tank sending unit, so i can fill-er up without leaking...
                  Kerry. SDC Member #A012596W. ENCSDC member.

                  '51 Champion Business Coupe - (Tom's Car). Purchased 11/2012.

                  '40 Champion. sold 10/11. '63 Avanti R-1384. sold 12/10.


                  • #24
                    Well welcome to gasoline memory lane! To the best of my recollection my 63 Hawk GT 289-2 BL-4 speed, no P/S with Avanti Brakes and Hill holder got about 20-22 in everyday use on Long Island NY in 1966. I know because my dad wanted figures to set my gas allowance for college, since it replaced my mom's beautiful 59 T'Bird convertible (352 4v Auto) that got 8-12 MPG and with which I consistently used up my commutting allowance by Wednesday. I loved that car, and my dad didn't argue too hard when I wanted it as a used car for $1800.00 as it was cheap in comparison to his 64 Avanti R2. Unfortuneately I used it up and by late 66 it was well worn, and replaced by a new left-over 66 Olds 4-4-2 4 speed with a 3:90 rear and at best 14-15MPG( later improved to 19-20)with a 3:08 after blowing the spider gears out of the original rear for the 3rd time! I'm a little disappointed that with FI your's doesn't deliver 22+ all the time. Guess the cost to change over my Avanti to FI wouldn't be worthwhile.