gas range indicator reliability

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by ProspectiveBuyer, Jun 9, 2018.

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  1. Last night I was on a test drive and the battery was depleted. The dash said we had 5 miles of gas driving. But within five minutes (clearly less than 5 miles) we were suddenly down to 1 mile and had to head back to the dealership. Wondering if anyone else has experienced rapid changes like that? How low can you let the gauge drop without this sudden drop?
    Phil H. likes this.
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  3. Sandroad

    Sandroad Well-Known Member

    Are you referring to the HV range indicator in the center of the driver's dash display, or the gas tank level indicator on the right side of the driver's dash display? Or something else?
  4. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    The EV, HV, and Total Range are just estimates based on previous driving conditions. They adjust according to real time present conditions to be as close as can reasonably be expected. They are not meant to be and cannot be absolute numbers.
    Besides, even a 4 mile difference (guessing you went 1mile in that 1min) is just 1.2% of the total range of 330 miles. That is a very small and acceptable amount. I think your expectations may be a little too high.

    Also, when it went from 5 to 1 miles in just 1 minute, did the low fuel light just come on or not? How many bars were showing in the fuel guage? The fuel gauge will tell you when the tank is low and the low fuel light will warn you that you only have about 20 miles of gas left according to other posts.
    Having a hard time seeing your criticism as valid.
    ClarityDoc likes this.
  5. I was referring to the gas tank level indicator.
  6. The battery charge was down to 2 bars. So we thought five miles (on the gas engine) would get us a decent test drive. But when it quickly went from 5 to 1 mile, we had to cut the test drive short. At that point, we returned to the dealership and refueled. I was just wondering if that quick use of gas is typical. Or if it's just not that reliable a gauge.
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  8. M.M.

    M.M. Active Member

    Between those two options, the latter. The gas mileage you will get is in line with the 40-44mpg rating, and quite good for a car of its size.

    Although, it's really more accurate to say that the mileage estimates can and will fluctuate by a few miles depending on recent driving conditions. For example, if you've been cruising at 30mph on a flat road with no stop signs for a while, and the car estimates you have 30 miles of range left, then you pull onto the freeway and start driving up a long hill at 60mph, the remaining miles estimate will be wildly inaccurate; you could easily be burning range at 4 times the rate you were before.

    Normally you don't notice fluctuations like this because they average out over a ~45 mile electric charge or ~300 mile tank of gas. But when you're down to single digits, variability in driving conditions and measurement accuracy can eat through what little you have left more quickly than you expect. "5 miles" of gas range, after all, is less than two cups of gasoline, which is not an amount a fuel gauge in a 7 gallon tank can measure accurately, particularly when you factor in it sloshing around.
  9. Ed Sprole

    Ed Sprole New Member

    Of course, the 1000 mile HV range my car has been showing will likely drop by 3-4 miles per actual mile driven :)
  10. loomis2

    loomis2 Well-Known Member

    My 2010 Prius would drop from 20 miles to 0 miles. I have driven many miles over the years with 0 miles showing and I never ran out of gas. I was probably driving to a gas station to fill up, but to a station I chose, not the closest one to me because I had no choice.

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