Saturn Aura MPG weirdness?

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I will be posting my driving impressions of the Aura soon.
But meanwhile, among other things, I am checking gas mileage.
It is after all the main reason GM offers the 2.4 Liter 6 speed on their top Aura model for 2009.

But so far the onboard computer has been giving me rather strange readings.
I have been driving in my usual relaxed manner. Which got me around 15 to 16mpg City in a 430hp Corvette.
But here, I only get between 16 and 18 in strict city driving.
And I am having trouble getting 31mpg on only “very relaxed” fwy cruising.
I will double check with how much gas I am actually using later. But my “relaxed” driving usually gets me better (sometimes much better) numbers that what manufacturers actually claim.
I am about 5mpg off on this one.

I just wonder if anyone here owns a Saturn Aura,or has driven one for a while. And what the mileage is.

I remeber getting an average of 23 mpg on the 2.4 Liter Malibu. But that was mostly country driving.
I will contact GM about this and am also trying to get a similar Malibu (6 speed with 2.4 L) to compare.

Conversation 13 comments

  1. Vince,

    The Aura may have lower miles on the odometer than the Malibu had, and thus its engine may not be ‘broken in’ yet. Before the pistons bed in and rings become seated, the engine will be much tighter. I’ve seen a new car get significantly better MPG after 1000 miles of ‘running in’ the engine. Could be the reason the Aura is getting disappointing gas mileage so far.

  2. The Aura has almost 1600 miles on it. Which is actually more than the Malibu I drove had.

    I think it might be an on board computer thing…
    I did reset it twice. But it still acts more like
    “instant mileage’ than “average mileage”.

  3. Weird. The numbers may not be stellar as so new, BUT should still be better than that. And given that you’ve reset it–which some forget about–it definitely should be reading differently.

    As you drive, what is the Instant MPG showing at times? With a ’08 Malibu 2.4L and the 4-speed, our numbers around town stopping and going are not that great, and you can see the low figures as it revs from stop to stop on the Instant, but hit a cruise at 50 or above, and 30+ is immediate and effortless.

  4. The instant numbers seem normal.
    But it also starts at “0” when I reset. And takes a while to get up to the actual number (In average mode)
    I seem to remember that other GM cars I drove don’t do that. they usually don’t start with a “0”…

  5. You can check reports from other users: 26.9 (6 reports) 26.6 combined

    Range on is 23-34 so seems slightly higher.
    City driving can easily go under 20mpg with most cars.

    Typically I also get few mpg higher on freeway so who knows. Maybe the average is not resetting properly or as you said more instant. Either way not great mileage for such an engine and car.

  6. What I don’t understand is why the Malibu LTZ 2.4 and 3.6 cost the SAME…at least according to the website. I was hoping the price would go down at least a couple thousand because of the engine.

  7. The car is way to heavy for a 4 cylinder and therefore will be a gas pig…This car with a GM V8 will probably get the same gas mileage as the 4 in ‘relaxed’ driving.

  8. Should be much the same as a Honda Accord sedan with the 4 cylinder engine. Mine (’04 EX-L) averages 24 MPG with about 21 at worst and 33 at best.

    No, that car is NOT too heavy for a 4 cylinder engine in today’s world of excellent 4s.

    The mid-teen figure for the Aura 4 results either from the computer’s error or something’s wrong with that car.

  9. mileage on onbard cpu’s are sometimes not very exact!

    a sensor may be badly calibrated or faulty…

  10. Oh, the crazy comments have arrived. Welcome!

    1) Every GM Average MPG readout I’ve used has started at 0 when reset, sitting still. Same way the Instant reads 0 when you’re stopped at a light, etc. You’re not moving, so technically there are no miles per gallon to monitor…just time, essentially. Then as you drive, the number goes up as it forms an average.

    2) There IS a price difference between 4-cyl and V6 versions. Using 2009 numbers, on a 2LT the V6 package is $1795 and on a LTZ is $1595. All of these are 6-speeds, and the V6 packages include hydraulic steering, etc.

    3) This car is NOT too heavy for a 4-cylinder. Most sold now are 4-cylinders, and the 2.4L is a very spunky, extremely smooth, and eerily quiet drivetrain. It’s not a tire shredder, but neither are any competing 4-cylinder sedans. Around town they average low 20’s and then easily high 20’s to mid 30’s on the highway, usually over 30 all the time in a dead cruise. With the 4-speed, the 2.4L did/does rev out quite a bit in normal acceleration, but is kept very well in the powerband. With the 6-speed, it’s a noticeable improvement in smoothness and spunk, all while quieter yet and even less revs thanks to the extra gears.

    The V8 comment was just dumb. It may weigh a few pounds more than the typical Accord, etc. but only very slightly so, and close a door or just hum silently down the road and you know where it went.

  11. Most 4cyl midsize vehicles over power the V6 engines of 20 years ago. I used to have a bias against 4 cylenders, but not so much anymore. Depending on the model the 4 cyl “whine” is much most quiet, although I still prefer the V6 rumble to the I-4 ticking.

    The 1988 Mazda 929 3.0L V6 only had 158hp…a base 2008 Honda Accord can possibly out perform it, even with more weight due to enhanced safety.

  12. Most of the mileage hit is due to the 2007 EPA emissions crap that makes the car exhaust far cleaner than what naturally emits from the ground. You have to run those over-taxed I4s rich to get rid of NOx… a bigger engine with low-end torque can be run leaner. The Toyota 3.5 liter is superb example.

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