2009 BMW 750i: Exxon Valdez
March 19, 2010
You don't usually think of a BMW 750i as some kind of an mpg solution, but a trip to Phoenix and back reminded me that it's brilliant for long distance cruising. You just sail right by gas stations, laughing all the way.
This is what happens when you're driving a car with a fuel tank that holds 21.7 gallons. You might not have mpg, but a least you've got cruising range. Of course, there were times when I felt like the wacky Dennis Hopper character in the post-apocalyptic Waterworld, hoarding fuel oil in the Exxon Valdez, the world's last supertanker. (It's since renamed many times in the wake of its notorious oil spill in 1989 and is now doing business as the Dong Fang Ocean).
Did the 425.4 miles on the way over on one tank and then did the 423.4 miles on the way back on one tank. Just drove with traffic, which was 80 mph depending on the location of the photo radar setups in Arizona. Got 24.7 mpg, which is not so bad (actually a record in this car, which invites exhibitions of speed every second). If you program your destination into the navigation system, the graphic at the bottom of the instrument binnacle that shows your cruising range will also plot your destination mileage, so you know if you'll have to stop for gas before you get there.
Of course, any sane person would stop at least once during such a distance anyway, but the BMW keeps you from being tethered to all the usual Interstate off-ramps where drivers are searching for fuel. I've made the Phoenix trip on holiday weekends and getting stuck in some bad gas station in Blythe for 25 minutes is not fun.
When you're driving this car, you'll never having to eat again at some franchise fast-food place in back of the gas station. Instead you can risk being poisoned at Farmer Jack's Bar-B-Q and Methane Gas Emporium, and who wouldn't want that?
Michael Jordan, Executive Editor @ 26,000 miles