1988 Ford Escort 1.6D GL
Fuel Consumption

Description

The graph covers a period from February 1995 when I bought the car, up until February 1998 when I sold it.

Fuel consumption is measured by recording the date, quantity of fuel added and the car's odometer reading at each visit to the filling station (when the fuel tank is filled).

Because of the inaccuracies of the method, instantaneous fuel consumption calculations are unreliable and so an average of the last 5 calculations are plotted in the graph (blue line) shown above.

The green line in the graph shows the trend of the fuel consumption over the whole period.

Car Usage & Servicing

The car's use was pretty constant. On average I would cover about 450 miles per week, 25,000 miles a year. During weekdays this would involve a 30 mile daily commute to work, most of this being on a motorway with a top speed of 80mph. At weekends there would be a greater proportion of A-road and B-road driving.

The car is serviced according to the manufacturer's schedule which is every 6000 miles. I let a Ford dealer perform an annual major service whilst I performed the 6,000 mile services myself.

Analysis

Feb 1995
-
Nov 1997

Fuel consumption followed a regular pattern; around 54mpg during winter and up to 60mpg in the summer. There were no great exceptions to the familiar wave-like graph. That was, until, December 1997.

Dec 1997
-
Feb 1998

December 1997 something happened. I don't know what, but from then on, the car felt slower. I couldn't quite be 100% sure but it just seemed to not be performing quite so well as before. There was nothing obviously wrong and servicing and environmental conditions had not changed. But the uncharacteristic increase in fuel consumption indicated by the graph above assured me that something was definately wrong. Two months later I sold the car.
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