Gas Mileage/Fuel Economy

Jordan and I, as part of our conversations about growing our family, have been talking about vehicles.  Right now, we are a single vehicle house hold with a 2011 Ford Escape.  When we bought the vehicle, we thought it would be a great family car - able to handle all of our needs as our family grew.  We have found out two things.
  1. When driving 90K round trip every day, fuel economy is more important than we planned for
  2. When you have two shepherds and try to go camping, travel for Christmas or give people with luggage rides - your hatchback isn't as big as you think it is.
Our average monthly gas bill since moving to our new house is $385 with a high of $575.64 and a low of $188.17.

The advertised fuel economy for the Escape was 8.3L-10.4L/100K.  Here's what we're actually getting, shown in both L/100K and MPG.  You can see we are near, or over the top of the range each time!

1 km = 0.621371 miles
1 liter = 0.264172 US gallons

A large part of this is because our commute is typically in stop and go traffic.  On the dates were the economy is better, that typically falls during a highway road trip.

Size is the next issue - we have found over the last two years that we stuff the vehicle to the MAX! and we still often don't have enough room during Christmas or family trips. We're certain that once we have a little one, it's going to get even more cramped (if that's even possible).

So, what are we going to do about it?

We're going to investigate some of our options including trading the Escape in and purchasing two, 2-3 year old vehicles.  One, a pickup truck to be used on family trips/weekends with dogs/kids and a very small, commuter car with high fuel efficiency.  We currently owe about $19,000 on the Escape.  This isn't something that we're going to do tomorrow - but you know me, I like to have a plan and our plan has always been to get a second vehicle once we start our family...so we're just planning ahead.

What would you do?


  1. I would probably buy a truck that is around 10 years old with under 100k km's and keep the escape. When you sell your vehicle you may loose money which will outweight the potential fuel savings.

  2. I drive a mid-sized vehicle which I bought second hand and fairly new at the time and I make it pretty far on a tank of gas. I can sometimes make it to work and back and get groceries and do all the running around with the wife on one tank going into starting 2 near the end of the month. A gas guzzler really does eat up the budget. You may lose money selling the vehicle but it also might cost you to keep it. It's a hard decision.

  3. I would honestly get a minivan and a small commuter car. I was in your situation a few months ago. My family grew to 5 plus a dog and having a mini SUV is honestly a hassle. I'm 6'3 and have to teens that are 6' each. The third row is useless for us with a car seat on the second. Gas was horrible in my wifey's car so we needed to get rid of it but needed another car that could handle the size of our family.


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