2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo: Fuel Economy Update for July
August 6, 2014
It's the summer traveling season, but our 2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo hatchback failed to find its way onto the open road much this month. Only 1,330 miles got added to its odometer, and a substantial fraction of them were in-town city miles.
But not every single mile was driven in city traffic, of course. Some of them had to be freeway miles. We just don't know how many.
Whatever the mix, this month's average of 18.7 mpg is not a good number. It falls well short of the BMW's 22-mpg City mpg rating, and it pales in comparison with the Gran Turismo's 26-mpg combined rating. Theoretically, our unknown city-heavy driving mix should fall somewhere between the two, not below the lowest one.
What's up? There are a couple of theories.
West Side city traffic is worse than what EPA calls city traffic. The driving environment is more cut-and-thrust and there's a lot more idle time. Strike one.
It's hot outside, so the start-stop system isn't cutting the engine at those idle points as often or as long as it does when the weather is cooler. It's all about keeping the A/C running. Strike two.
And there are those staffers that don't like the start-stop system in the first place, so they switch it completely off. Strike three.
Maybe someday I'll run my 4-hour city mpg loop two times (once off, once on) to see if I can quantify the effects of disabling the start-stop system. Oh yeah, that'll be a party. I can hardly wait.
Whatever the underlying reason, this month's disappointing 18.7-mpg performance dropped the Gran Turismo's lifetime average from 24.1 mpg to 23.5 mpg.
Worst Fill MPG: 14.9
Best Fill MPG: 33.2
Average Lifetime MPG: 23.5 (down from 24.1 mpg)
EPA MPG Rating: 26 Combined (22 City / 33 Highway)
Best Range: 497.1
Current Odometer: 14,009
Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing @ 14,009 miles