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Old 20-11-2007   #1
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4x4 Fuel issues

Although this has probably been covered in some detail previously, I was interested to find out from other 1.2 4x4 users about their own economy levels. I'm starting to think that either my trip computer is faulty or my Panda is stuck in town driving mode!

Since buying it in January 2006, I can safely say that the maximum range I've got from a full tank is 220 miles, which seems a tad low. The trip computer regularly reads a combined mpg range of between 38 to 41 mpg, but I never seem to be able to get more than 210 miles from the tank. Something seems amiss and I'd be interested to hear from other owners. I lrun the tank right down too, over half way into the red with the remaining miles reading "----" all the time. I think sometimes that the fuel nozzle cuts off quite early when I'm filling up but it's hard to judge how much more to stuff in!

It's due a service next month so I wonder if the garage can check the diagnostics to see if there's anything obvious. My driving is mainly in and around town, but it's mostly 40mph and over but maybe I just have to accept it as I know it's not known for its economy...

Any advice/insights are very much appreciated!
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Old 20-11-2007   #2
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

I wouldn't be that dissapointed, you know.
I've only covered less than 1000 miles so far (just bought it last month) and haven't been out of the city yet (which is an average speed of less than 20 mph)
(My readings are in km and lit, so forgive any inaccuracies!)
When I filled just after the "----" signal appeared, the tank took approx. 6 gal. I tried once more, covering 25 km after the "-----" had appeared and all I got was a trifle more than the previous one. So I also guessed that there nozzle should be cutting off too early....
Now, as for the mpg: mine is much lower, due to the heavy traffic I get stuck every day.

One question: is there any noticeable difference in the performance when filling up with 100 octane petrol? Even 0.5 hp more would be more than welcome!
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Old 21-11-2007   #3
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

The average mpg reading is inaccurate in all Pandas but in your case seems particularly inaccurate.
The range you are getting of 210 miles seems to be normal and probably equates to the low 30's in mpg which again is not unusual in the 4x4.
All you can do to improve the mpg is practice economical driving, regularly check tyre pressures, ditch anything heavy in the car you don't need (wife, girlfriend etc.) and don't carry stuff on the roof if you don't need to.
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Old 21-11-2007   #4
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

as an x-owner of a climbing panda, i agree that the readings in the trip comuter is inaccurate (as in all pandas). You will see a difference after the 10K mark and you will feel the engine a bit smoother. From my experience 100ron petrol did make a difference but not a vast one. The funny thing is that my 100hp is much more economical in both town and in long journeys.
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Old 21-11-2007   #5
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Why is the 4x4 less economical than even the 100hp?

Several reasons.
1. A heavier car due to the additional strengthening and weight of the 4x4 transmission.
2. The desperately underpowered 1.2 petrol engine often has to be thrashed to maintain normal progress. The gearing is low so that that at motorway speeds the engine is revving faster than any other Panda variant.
3. The 4x4 transmission to the rear wheels is always turning even if not driving the wheels so frictional losses are greater.
4. Wider tyres than most other Pandas increase rolling resistance.
5. The raised stance of the car may increase wind resistance, though I feel this would be minimal.

What can you do?

1. Try pulling away in 2nd gear if possible as suggested in the manual.
2. Plan your driving so that braking and accelerating is minimised.
3. Don't even think about motorway cruising above 70mph, the best economy I ever saw was when I had to drive from Leicester to Sunderland on the spacesaver at 50 mph cos KwikFit wouldn't repair a puncture for me and it was a Sunday.
4. Just live with it. Can you find another 4x4 with such low overall running costs?
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Old 21-11-2007   #6
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Quote Originally Posted by doctorchris View Post
Why is the 4x4 less economical than even the 100hp?

What can you do?

1. Try pulling away in 2nd gear if possible as suggested in the manual.
2. Plan your driving so that braking and accelerating is minimised.
3. Don't even think about motorway cruising above 70mph, the best economy I ever saw was when I had to drive from Leicester to Sunderland on the spacesaver at 50 mph cos KwikFit wouldn't repair a puncture for me and it was a Sunday.
4. Just live with it. Can you find another 4x4 with such low overall running costs?
1: I used to do that with my 1997 4x4 Panda.... and do it with my 2007 one...

4: dunno... Ignis 4x4, perhaps?
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Old 22-11-2007   #7
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Thanks for the replies guys. Seems as if the trip computer might need some recalibrating then...

Could just be the colder weather too having an impact, as I'm going to struggle to hit 200 miles from this tank currently. When I've used half of the tank it usually reads 120 miles covered but I think it'll be nearer 110 this time.

Will mention it at next service and make sure the oil is changed too!

Cheers.
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Old 22-11-2007   #8
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

I'm going to be the odd one out here. If I reset the trip computer each fill-up the average mpg shown is within 1-2mpg of the calculated figure on my 100hp.
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Old 22-11-2007   #9
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Don't forget that the 4x4 has a smaller fuel tank capacity than the normal 1.2 8v (5 litres less) due to the prop shaft getting in the way.

It's surprising how much drag the transmission causes- jumping from a normal 1.2 into a 4x4 feels like the handbrake is constantly on!

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Old 23-11-2007   #10
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Just out of interest, I took a spirited drive in the Northumbrian countryside today in the Panda 4x4. Very mixed driving, including 70mph dual carriageway, fast single carriageway A roads, narrow, winding B roads and a stretch of pot-holed dirt and gravel. Coming home, I was using traffic-congested city roads, dawdling along at next to no speed. The only thing to add is that I stuck to speed limits almost always.
Well, the computer tells me that I have managed a very respectable 37.5 mpg, though topping up the tank will give a more reliable figure for economy.
Hope this gives some idea of how the 4x4 uses fuel. My own opinion is that I had so much fun for so little outlay that I don't care.
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Old 24-11-2007   #11
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

OK - my 2 cents:

My 03.2006. Panda Climbing 1,2 petrol has now 30 000 km (km, not miles) on Tacho.

I must agree, that the fuel consumption is above we would like expect from a car of such small dimensions, but – there are key differences between Panda 4x4 and usual small-format-car: 4x4 transmission (you cant disengage rear wheels) and lower gearing, if you compare with 2 x 4 Pandas. The small fuel tank is a bit bigger, than according manual (if you drive some 30 km after "––––" reading, you can fill about 32 liters instead of nominal 30, if you fill up very slowly, letting the air bubbles to get out the tank.
Anyways, autonomy isnt great – in urban conditions, about 310 - 350 km / tank, mixed extra urban / urban about 400-420 km, pure extra urban (on-road), up to 475 km. Off-roading makes fun, not economy - readings about 12-13 liters/100 km seems to be true.

Conclusion: if I would to buy my car today, I would pay teh 1500 or so pounds premium to get the Multijet 1,3. Not so much for economy, but rather for extra power. (I'm from Latvia, and could get Multijet too, but with painful long waiting time…)

So, If you actually don't need the 4x4 (I need for my Flyfishing trips, Skiing etc), buy the ordinary Panda or 100 Hp, and you will be happier.

If you need small-format 4x4, there are some ugly and a bit more expensive alternatives from Suzuki and Daihatsu. Nothing personal, but I like Panda much more.
Of course, Panda 4x4 can't replace a Land Rover Defender or other die-hard off-road vehicle, but for most of us Panda has more than enough under hood. You see full roads of Golf + molding = SUV type cars, and most of them are worser than Panda in off-road.

So – the not-so-great dynamic and a-bit-more fuel consumption is, what we pay for 4x4 abilities. I can live with that and Im happy with my Panda.
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Old 24-11-2007   #12
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Quote Originally Posted by Graeme_UK View Post
Could just be the colder weather too having an impact, as I'm going to struggle to hit 200 miles from this tank currently. When I've used half of the tank it usually reads 120 miles covered but I think it'll be nearer 110 this time.
i get that far from when the stilo goes on red

one thing i dont understand, is why they didnt put the multijet engine in the 4 x 4, surely it would have been better with that
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Old 24-11-2007   #13
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Quote Originally Posted by Joshua Frost-Lunn View Post
one thing i dont understand, is why they didnt put the multijet engine in the 4 x 4, surely it would have been better with that
They do. But the Multijet 4x4 aren't for all markets, and ony steer–in–left–side versions are produced. So, no 1,3 Multijet 4x4 for UK and other countries with similar traffic rules.
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Old 24-11-2007   #14
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Quote Originally Posted by Mix_ View Post
They do. But the Multijet 4x4 aren't for all markets, and ony steer–in–left–side versions are produced. So, no 1,3 Multijet 4x4 for UK and other countries with similar traffic rules.
what a bummer

think a 1.3 multijet over here would sell quite well
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Old 25-11-2007   #15
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Re: 4x4 Fuel issues

Quote Quote:
what a bummer

think a 1.3 multijet over here would sell quite well
Yep I'd have thought so, especially with fuel prices going the way they seem to be...

I don't want to come down that hard on my car. It still makes me grin like a cheshire cat when taking a roundabout in the wet a wee bit too fast, or the school boy like excitement I feel when the first snow of winter hits.

Guess the premium for all that is the limited tank range and trying to squeeze some economy from the car. I'm going to try super unleaded on my next fill up then switch back to see if I can eek out any more miles but I'm not expecting that much more.

Roll on winter then!
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