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Old 10-08-2022, 09:48 PM #1
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Tricks to up your fuel mileage. (V8)

I've got a v8 without the valve timing thing. Usually I'm making around 14 or so mpg.

After some reading and experiment the best fuel mileage I've been able to make city driving is 16.7 MPG.

That's with premium fuel, without the spare tire, and keeping the revs at around 2,000-2,500 rpm. (That final one seems to do the trick the best)

I'm just curious now as to how far you could (in theory) push the fuel economy on the v8's.

Any techniques you all know about?

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Last edited by Moist; 10-12-2022 at 03:07 PM. Reason: fixed the MPG
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Old 10-08-2022, 10:09 PM #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moist View Post
I'm just curious now as to how far you could really push the fuel economy on the v8's.

Any techniques you all know about?
Check out some of the "hypermileing" forums. Most of these folks are pushing smaller cars to MPG extremes but many of their techniques could be applied to the v8 4 Runner.

As you mentioned a light foot on the gas peddle goes a long way.
Easier things to think about include:
* Avoid idling
* Pulse and glide like NASCAR/Indy drivers do when they are waiting out a flag.
* Go slower up hills, and faster down hills.
* Switching to high performance spark plugs
* Switching to a low viscosity oil or switch to synthetic oil (and ATF)to reduce friction
* Align and balance the wheels.
* Check tire pressure regularly.


Mods that I've read about include:
* Removing the roof rack, Shaving the side mirrors and door handles

* Drop weight anywhere you can tolerate it: You've already dropped the spare, other ideas... Remove sunroof and weld in a panel, remove unused seats, center console?

* Reduce rolling resistance. Find skinnier tires and lighter rims. If you have the sport with larger brakes switch to the smaller calipers/ brakes.

* Custom light weight "skid plates" with a golf ball texture that smooth out the bottom of the rig streamlining the airflow.

* Fender skirts covering much of the rear tires.

* Inflatable "trailer tails" that smooth out the airflow and reduce suction behind the rig.


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Old 10-08-2022, 11:22 PM #3
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Mine gets pretty crappy around town mileage, around 14 but highway only its a bit better like 16-17mpg. The bigger tires actually help bring the rpm down. And yes keeping your rpms low everywhere you drive is the best for mpg.
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Old 10-09-2022, 12:13 AM #4
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Just bought a 2005 limited v8 4x4. Averaging 12.3 mpg in city. Will try some of the suggestions. Thanks
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Old 10-10-2022, 07:54 AM #5
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The trick is to focus on the beautiful purr/growl of the v8. It wasn't built for good mpg.
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Old 10-10-2022, 08:20 AM #6
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I didn't calculate my trip but my GF and I did a trip up to Smugglers Notch in VT last weekend and my 4runner did pretty well on fuel. I filled up at the local gas station down the street before we left and got there with 1/2 a tank left. My '08 v8 has a 2.5-1.5 lift and nitto terra g2's. It's about 169 miles from my house to the resort. I consider that pretty well for the miles, up and down mountains and the way the 4runner is built.
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Old 10-10-2022, 08:50 AM #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moist View Post
I've got a v8 without the valve timing thing. Usually I'm making around 14 or so mpg.

After some reading and experiment the best fuel mileage I've been able to make city driving is 16.8 MPG.

That's with premium fuel, without the spare tire, and keeping the revs at around 2000 rpm. (That final one seems to do the trick the best)

I'm just curious now as to how far you could really push the fuel economy on the v8's.

Any techniques you all know about?

Sent from my SM-G973U using Tapatalk

Hate to be the bearer of bad news but the dash display is notoriously unreliable and typically indicates significantly better numbers than you're getting. On my V6 for example, I've calculated the MPG at every fill-up for over 25K miles through the Fuelly app, which does miles traveled divided by gallons burned (the only truly accurate method). The average is 17.2 whereas the dash display, even after being reset multiple times, always comes back to 19.7.

I've often wondered where the dash panel gets its numbers. Anyone know?

As others have noted, there's not much magic to be done in terms of V8 MPG improvements. In fact, this reminds me of the discussion about improving the V6's performance. In both cases, these engines are solid, reliable, and durable, and it's best to just accept them for what they are b/c money spent trying to make them something else is a waste.

Last edited by Bluesky 07; 10-10-2022 at 08:53 AM.
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Old 10-10-2022, 10:01 AM #8
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The dash mileage calculator is from the last time you reset it. If you want to get true mileage, fill the tank and note your miles. Drive until you are at 1/4 tank, fill it up, subtract starting mileage from current mileage and divide the result by the fill up gallons. If you want the dash calculator to do it, press the reset and drive for 3/4 tank then check it.

I pull a 6,000 lb. travel trailer and get 9-11 mpg depending on the headwind. If I don't reset the calculator then that factors in when I'm not pulling it.
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Old 10-10-2022, 10:24 AM #9
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Awesome! Smugglers Notch sounds so fun!
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Old 10-10-2022, 01:24 PM #10
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We also have a very early (in our case, 2003) V8, as well as a 2009 V6.

There's no way you can rely on that fuel mileage computer, it's hopelessly optimistic! Our V8 gets 10-12 around town, and 15-17 on the highway. The lower end of that is in the winter, when gas is blended. (These are actual calculated #s over several tankfuls).

But don't feel too too bad; the V6 isn't that much better. It gets 14-16 around town and 19-21 on the highway. One thing that I will say is that the VVTi V6 pulls almost as hard as the non-VVTi V8. Still, the V8 does sound worlds better, even through stock pipes.

One thing that absolutely saps mileage is AT tires. We used to have normal all-season tires on the V8 and on a long summer highway trip I once achieved 19.7 mpg, calculated. But I never came close to that after we got new AT tires.

I don't think the spare tire should ever be left home ... it's not enough weight or drag do make a noticeable difference! If/when you need it, you'll sorely regret not having it!

Also, I would not bother with premium fuel. Our V8s are very mildly tuned, with very un-pushed timing; as such, there's no need for high-octane gas. That's just lighting money on fire.







Quote:
Originally Posted by Moist View Post
I've got a v8 without the valve timing thing. Usually I'm making around 14 or so mpg.

After some reading and experiment the best fuel mileage I've been able to make city driving is 16.8 MPG.

That's with premium fuel, without the spare tire, and keeping the revs at around 2000 rpm. (That final one seems to do the trick the best)

I'm just curious now as to how far you could really push the fuel economy on the v8's.

Any techniques you all know about?

Sent from my SM-G973U using Tapatalk
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Old 10-10-2022, 10:23 PM #11
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Iíd be hard pressed to believe that anything extreme done to try and improve mpg being worthwhile money wise at the end of the day.. I tried the whole premium gas thing and.. yea.. sure . You may pick up a bit better mpg but you still end up spending a lot more per fill up so other than running premium you donít gain anything at all.

If youíre to the point of welding in the sunroof, shaving down mirrors and handles, and taking out the console and unused seats than maybe an early 2000s V8 suv just isnít for you ..


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Old 10-12-2022, 02:59 PM #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2003V8LTD View Post
We also have a very early (in our case, 2003) V8, as well as a 2009 V6.

There's no way you can rely on that fuel mileage computer, it's hopelessly optimistic! Our V8 gets 10-12 around town, and 15-17 on the highway. The lower end of that is in the winter, when gas is blended. (These are actual calculated #s over several tankfuls).

But don't feel too too bad; the V6 isn't that much better. It gets 14-16 around town and 19-21 on the highway. One thing that I will say is that the VVTi V6 pulls almost as hard as the non-VVTi V8. Still, the V8 does sound worlds better, even through stock pipes.

One thing that absolutely saps mileage is AT tires. We used to have normal all-season tires on the V8 and on a long summer highway trip I once achieved 19.7 mpg, calculated. But I never came close to that after we got new AT tires.

I don't think the spare tire should ever be left home ... it's not enough weight or drag do make a noticeable difference! If/when you need it, you'll sorely regret not having it!

Also, I would not bother with premium fuel. Our V8s are very mildly tuned, with very un-pushed timing; as such, there's no need for high-octane gas. That's just lighting money on fire.
I'm rocking Bias Ply Trailer Tires year round until I can get new rims, that's also the reason I no longer have a spare. Those old rims and tires are pretty aged. I'll take that to mind when I eventually get new ones.

Also, I really didn't know that about the fuel, nice to know though. 100$ to fill up 20 gallons for the good stuff. Definitely will save the bank.


I have also yet to try this new driving style on the interstate. If I made almost 17 city, then I want to see it on the interstate. Holding 2,500 is the v8's spot for best mileage.

Last edited by Moist; 11-29-2023 at 02:44 PM. Reason: I had Bias Ply trailer tires, why did I put winter tires??? I get that it's embarassing but wow.
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Old 10-12-2022, 03:00 PM #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aemravan View Post
Iíd be hard pressed to believe that anything extreme done to try and improve mpg being worthwhile money wise at the end of the day.. I tried the whole premium gas thing and.. yea.. sure . You may pick up a bit better mpg but you still end up spending a lot more per fill up so other than running premium you donít gain anything at all.

If youíre to the point of welding in the sunroof, shaving down mirrors and handles, and taking out the console and unused seats than maybe an early 2000s V8 suv just isnít for you ..


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I am aware, just curious to what people do for better mileage is all.
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Old 10-12-2022, 03:04 PM #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluesky 07 View Post
Hate to be the bearer of bad news but the dash display is notoriously unreliable and typically indicates significantly better numbers than you're getting. On my V6 for example, I've calculated the MPG at every fill-up for over 25K miles through the Fuelly app, which does miles traveled divided by gallons burned (the only truly accurate method). The average is 17.2 whereas the dash display, even after being reset multiple times, always comes back to 19.7.

I've often wondered where the dash panel gets its numbers. Anyone know?

As others have noted, there's not much magic to be done in terms of V8 MPG improvements. In fact, this reminds me of the discussion about improving the V6's performance. In both cases, these engines are solid, reliable, and durable, and it's best to just accept them for what they are b/c money spent trying to make them something else is a waste.

I'll see if I can get one of my mechanic buddies to take a look at the system and see if he can figure it out. He's got the tools to reprogram the whole thing so I'll ask.

Sucks though that it's so off. makes sense though, when I first got the car it gave some bizzare readouts. oh well.

I'm used to the normal mileage, just curious though what some people do or the theoretical maximum someone can get.
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Old 10-12-2022, 05:42 PM #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moist View Post
I'll see if I can get one of my mechanic buddies to take a look at the system and see if he can figure it out. He's got the tools to reprogram the whole thing so I'll ask.

Sucks though that it's so off. makes sense though, when I first got the car it gave some bizzare readouts. oh well.

I'm used to the normal mileage, just curious though what some people do or the theoretical maximum someone can get.
As far as real-time (vs. average), I had my OBD reader plugged in during a road trip. Cruising at 55 mph on a perfectly flat stretch of interstate, the instant MPG readout in the OBD Fusion app was a consistent 23.7. The average will never be anything approaching that but I was surprised it was up that high. Of course, if you watch the instant readout through such an app, you see anything from <5 mpg (accelerating up a steep hill) to 70+ (coasting down the other side).

Last edited by Bluesky 07; 10-12-2022 at 05:44 PM.
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