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New owner of a 2013 2.5S here as of a month ago. I'm coming from an 8th gen Civic most recently, and 7th gen Civic before that. I'm a big road tripper who does tons and tons of highway miles each year, so highway MPG is always a huge deciding factor in a vehicle for me.

Observations after a few 500+ mile highway drives in the 2.5S:

It seems to me that compared to both of the Civics I owned in the past, the MPG vs. speed curve falls off a lot faster above 65-70 mph on the Altima.

I purchased the Altima primarily because of the tantalizing EPA claim of 38 MPG highway, a remarkable improvement of 2 MPG over the Civic despite a lot more room and comfort. Now, I understand these numbers aren't perfect, and I am a somewhat aggressive driver (accelerate somewhat quickly, speed by 5-10 mph). What I've found thus far though is that the Altima EPA estimate is far higher than what I'm getting in the real world.

I've made sure to rule out common caveats:

* Tire pressures are all within +/-1.5 psi of spec (32 psi)
* I installed a brand new OEM air filter
* Wind was not significant (over 10-15 mph) on any of my long drives thus far

Based on 6-8 fillups where I'd gone 200+ mi. and calculated mpg manually at the pump, I tend to get 33-34 mpg when cruising at "lower" highway speeds of 60-70 mph, and 30-32 mpg at my typical highway speeds of 75-80 mph. The mpg reported by the dash ranges from 1.5-4.5 mpg too high -- e.g., it once reported 35.4 mpg and I measured 31.2 mpg.

While these numbers are not awful for a midsize, they are really quite disappointing relative to the sticker claim. Contrast this with the Civic, which had an EPA estimate of 36/25 highway/city. On long highway drives cruising at 75-80 mph, I would consistently measure 35-37 mpg at the pump -- exactly what they claimed. On the 2.5S, I'm typically measuring an astounding 5-7 mpg less than the sticker value for the same types of drives with the same driving habits.

TLDR: compared to multiple Civics, the Altima is getting me consistently worse mpg (by a substantial margin) on long ~75 mph highway drives, despite its EPA rating being 2 mpg higher than the Civics. Based on watching the mpg estimate on the dash in real-time, I suspect the Altima mpg drops off much more quickly at higher speeds above 65 mph.

Anyone have any thoughts or similar experiences? There's a lot I love about this car, coming from a cramped and generally cheapier-feeling Civic. But if I'm honest, the 38 mpg claim is what tipped the scales in favor of buying this Altima (even recognizing there may be a reasonable +/-2 mpg margin to account for driving style and speed), and I feel a bit cheated now. If I drive 80k highway miles over the course of my ownership, the gas bill will likely be >$1000 more than I'd planned.
 

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New owner of a 2013 2.5S here as of a month ago. I'm coming from an 8th gen Civic most recently, and 7th gen Civic before that. I'm a big road tripper who does tons and tons of highway miles each year, so highway MPG is always a huge deciding factor in a vehicle for me.

Observations after a few 500+ mile highway drives in the 2.5S:

It seems to me that compared to both of the Civics I owned in the past, the MPG vs. speed curve falls off a lot faster above 65-70 mph on the Altima.

I purchased the Altima primarily because of the tantalizing EPA claim of 38 MPG highway, a remarkable improvement of 2 MPG over the Civic despite a lot more room and comfort. Now, I understand these numbers aren't perfect, and I am a somewhat aggressive driver (accelerate somewhat quickly, speed by 5-10 mph). What I've found thus far though is that the Altima EPA estimate is far higher than what I'm getting in the real world.

I've made sure to rule out common caveats:

* Tire pressures are all within +/-1.5 psi of spec (32 psi)
* I installed a brand new OEM air filter
* Wind was not significant (over 10-15 mph) on any of my long drives thus far

Based on 6-8 fillups where I'd gone 200+ mi. and calculated mpg manually at the pump, I tend to get 33-34 mpg when cruising at "lower" highway speeds of 60-70 mph, and 30-32 mpg at my typical highway speeds of 75-80 mph. The mpg reported by the dash ranges from 1.5-4.5 mpg too high -- e.g., it once reported 35.4 mpg and I measured 31.2 mpg.

While these numbers are not awful for a midsize, they are really quite disappointing relative to the sticker claim. Contrast this with the Civic, which had an EPA estimate of 36/25 highway/city. On long highway drives cruising at 75-80 mph, I would consistently measure 35-37 mpg at the pump -- exactly what they claimed. On the 2.5S, I'm typically measuring an astounding 5-7 mpg less than the sticker value for the same types of drives with the same driving habits.

TLDR: compared to multiple Civics, the Altima is getting me consistently worse mpg (by a substantial margin) on long ~75 mph highway drives, despite its EPA rating being 2 mpg higher than the Civics. Based on watching the mpg estimate on the dash in real-time, I suspect the Altima mpg drops off much more quickly at higher speeds above 65 mph.

Anyone have any thoughts or similar experiences? There's a lot I love about this car, coming from a cramped and generally cheapier-feeling Civic. But if I'm honest, the 38 mpg claim is what tipped the scales in favor of buying this Altima (even recognizing there may be a reasonable +/-2 mpg margin to account for driving style and speed), and I feel a bit cheated now. If I drive 80k highway miles over the course of my ownership, the gas bill will likely be >$1000 more than I'd planned.


I too switched from a civic (2007) which was a champ on fuel. I upgraded to the 5th Gen Altima due to needed size and like you it was based heavily on the estimated mpg. I chose the 2.5 specifically over the 3.5 engine for fuel efficiency. I just hit 18k miles last week and you're number are pretty spot on to my real world experience. I am a huge fan of my 2.5sv overall, but absolutely think the 38mpg is a stretch. Although I have seen claims of members here getting high 30s regularly on the highway, unfortunately I'm nowhere near that lucky. I found that mine has a sweet spot for efficiency cursing around 45 mph. The only thing I would do differently knowing what I know now is purchased the 3.5 altima where the milage would not be much less but a little more fun to drive and not work the engine as hard! Hopefully your car mpg gets better with time and enjoy the ride!
 

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I had a "S" that had those 16" balloon tires and it got 35-36ish. I ended up with a SV that had the 17" wheels and that car pulled 40+ mpg on 700+ mile trip. Make sure you have plenty of air in those 16" tires. I like to run 38-39psi hot.
 

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My Other Ride is Your Mom
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I also get substantially better mileage at ~40psi than at the recommended 32psi. I make a 350-mile drive twice per week between North Chicago and Southern IL, and once I clear Chicago I'm getting 30-33mpg depending on weather and speed (between 75-80mph).

Planning to pick up some new wheels/tires in the next couple of months that will drop about 40lbs of unsprung weight, so I'm interested to see how the mpg/driveability is affected.
 

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Allegedly speaking.....I get 35mpg at 70-75mph and 30-32mpg at 80-85mph.

Our final gear ratio can be 0.33/1 so it should beat the civic. At 90mph on flat land where I can find it I'm doing 2300rpm's. I drive 110miles/day and it's all hills in dense high speed commuter traffic where the speed limit will get you flipped off or more.
 

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Did the car arrive with the original (OEM) tires, or new ones? If they're new and not low rolling resistance, that can make a big difference. We sacrificed about 3 mpg when we changed to a better (in the rain and snow) tire. That was the only change we made prior to the drop in mpg, and the change was immediate and very noticeable.

And yes, the sizes are OEM, and they are at the proper PSI.
 

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We still have not taken our 2015 2.5 SV on a road trip, but two years ago I rented a 2014 2.5 S and we got 41.2 mpg on a trip from Branson, MO to the OKC area. I figured the MPG at the pump and it was about 1.5 MPG below the computer figure.

We drove half the way on two lane roads through a lot of small towns and a lot of hills and curves on the roads. The other half was on the Turner Turnpike at speeds of 75 except for the construction areas which were long and slow. We do drive in a fashion that tries to maximize our mileage figures. We were both very satisfied with the mileage we got on the trip.
 
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