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white 2013 subaru outback 2.5i 6 speed manual
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Discussion Starter #1
Hey what's up guys, there are a lot of threads on here about fuel efficiency shift points. What about normal driving? My fuel efficiancy has gone out the window with the freeway i take to and from work normal speeds being 80-85 mph. I find myself at closer to the 3k mark when I shift. Since this is higher than most things I've read is there anything I need to know about shifting at too high an rpm.? I've always thought too low was worse. But I'm very new to stick. Any info would be greatly appreciated... I have a big hill when I leave my house and I feel right at the top of fourth gear right around 29-31k my car gets some balls and takes off. Is it ok to creep in to that range or is that working the 2.5 too hard? I know it's not an Sti impreza but its still fun to drive not like a grandma. And coming from a giant lifted truck getting 12 mpg 24 that I've been getting is good to me and it handles like a dream compared to what I'm used too. Looking forward too hearing back.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited
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950 Posts
Casual driving shift point for my wifes car is between 3-3.5K RPM. She shifts around 2.5K and it sounds and feels too low...But she has a 2010 which does not have as low a torque curve as your 2013 2.5l.
 

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2019 Forester Sport. Love the Orange.
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4,018 Posts
....... What about normal driving? My fuel efficiancy has gone out the window with the freeway i take to and from work normal speeds being 80-85 mph.......
The answer is in your question. ;) Your shift points are not what's killing your mileage.
 

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2013 Outback 2.5 Premium 6mt
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187 Posts
Ignore the comments from the folks with the CVT/AT. The 6mt gets decent gas mileage at 80 as long as you keep a steady speed. Focus on keeping a steady speed instead of going up and down with traffic.

Also, use the eco gauge to your advantage. Play around with what gears gives the best gas mileage for the speed.

And finally, if still accelerating, let it rev. Don't be so quick to upshift if you still need to gain speed. Again, use the eco gauge to determine what upshift speeds gives the best gas mileage.
 

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2012 Subaru Outback 2.5i Six Speed
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5 Posts
Shift Points

CoastOutback: We seem to have similar taste in cars!

Revving to roughly 3,000 rpm to climb the hill near your house is certainly not working the 2.5 too hard (I presume this is what you meant by 29-31K).

The amount of gas your engine uses is less related to rpm than to the amount of energy needed to do what you're asking. If you are trying to push 3,400 pounds at 80 mph, or accelerate up a hill quickly, your ecu will determine you need more power and the fuel injectors will provide you more fuel.

If you would like to see for yourself the "not exactly causal" relationship between rpm and mpg, accelerate to about 40 mph in 2nd gear (putting you at high rpm), take your foot off of the gas pedal, and look what happens to the mpg gauge on the left. Because you are no longer asking the car to accelerate or even maintain speed, the mpg gauge will shoot to the top despite the high rpm.

The way to get good mileage in this car is pretty much like any other: no jack rabbit starts, coast to stop lights, use cruise control and keep freeway speeds down (due to the exponential growth in wind resistance).

Ed
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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3,565 Posts
Aerodynamic drag consumes 49% more horsepower at 80 mph than
at 70 mph, and should reduce mpg by about 30%. (Drag horsepower
goes as speed cubed; drag energy-per-mile as speed squared.)

On level ground at constant speed, weight makes absolutely no
difference -- but it hurts when accelerating and/or climbing hills.

...not just a good idea, them's THE LAWS!

Looby
 

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2013 Outback 2.5 Premium 6mt
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Aerodynamic drag consumes 49% more horsepower at 80 mph than
at 70 mph, and should reduce mpg by about 30%. (Drag horsepower
goes as speed cubed; drag energy-per-mile as speed squared.)

On level ground at constant speed, weight makes absolutely no
difference -- but it hurts when accelerating and/or climbing hills.

...not just a good idea, them's THE LAWS!

Looby
While I don't want to argue too much about it, I only lose about 1 to 2 mpg by going 80 instead of 70. Engine rpm and power band is also a key player in the mpg game. If 30% less mpg were true, I would be dropping 8 or 9 mpg by traveling at 80 instead of 70. In our Outbacks, that would mean we should be getting 17 to 19 mpg at a steady 80 mph. I can tell you with first hand knowledge that my Outback does much better than that for fuel mileage at 80 mph.
 

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white 2013 subaru outback 2.5i 6 speed manual
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Discussion Starter #9
So maybe I wrote the question wrong? Or maybe you read it wrong. I was saying I don't care about mpg so much. Im perfectly happy with what im getting and 75-80 is pretty slow for my freeway at 6am. youll probably get flashed and flipped off if you go any slower. My question is the shift points and is it cool to go above 3k. At the top of 4th going up hill around 29-3k the car starts pulling nicely . Is it ok to take it to 3500+? I just want to take care of my new investment and don't want to harm the engine. Normally I shift in the 28-31k range. And has anyone mastered the hill assist. I find it weird and can't get the hang of it. But I am enjoying the new world of stick shift..
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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My question is the shift points and is it cool to go above 3k
I seldom let the tach drop below 2500. In heavy traffic -- where
throttle response is a safety factor -- I don't let it dip below 3000
even at steady speed on a flat road. For even moderately spirited
driving I routinely shift between 4000 and 5000 -- and often wind
it up to near redline.

FWIW, I get mid-20s mpg "just drivin' around" on suburban/rural
PA roads -- and high-20's at 75-ish mph on interstate highways
(that's about the ONLY place that it ever gets into 6th gear).

Physics 101: At 3000 rpm, you don't have a 170 hp engine -- it's
no more than 95 hp. At 2000 rpm, you have less than 60 hp.

...rpms are your friends,

Looby
 

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2011 Outback Premium 6MT
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546 Posts
Aerodynamic drag consumes 49% more horsepower at 80 mph than
at 70 mph, and should reduce mpg by about 30%. (Drag horsepower
goes as speed cubed; drag energy-per-mile as speed squared.)

On level ground at constant speed, weight makes absolutely no
difference -- but it hurts when accelerating and/or climbing hills.

...not just a good idea, them's THE LAWS!

Looby
True, but other forms of friction and resistance do not follow those rules - such as internal engine and driveline friction. As such, there is likely a linear component of friction in there as well which will make the 80 mph not as bad as you would think.
 

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2013 Outback 2.5 Premium 6mt
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So maybe I wrote the question wrong? Or maybe you read it wrong. I was saying I don't care about mpg so much. Im perfectly happy with what im getting and 75-80 is pretty slow for my freeway at 6am. youll probably get flashed and flipped off if you go any slower. My question is the shift points and is it cool to go above 3k. At the top of 4th going up hill around 29-3k the car starts pulling nicely . Is it ok to take it to 3500+? I just want to take care of my new investment and don't want to harm the engine. Normally I shift in the 28-31k range. And has anyone mastered the hill assist. I find it weird and can't get the hang of it. But I am enjoying the new world of stick shift..
Sorry for getting off topic.

Letting it rev to 3,000+ while accelerating is perfectly fine. Once you get up to speed, find a gear that keeps the rpm at 2,100 to 2,400 rpm for the best fuel mileage (slightly less rpm at slow speeds). If in traffic, it may help to keep the rpm's a little higher so it is easier to speed up and down with traffic but your mpg will suffer a little.

What may help you learn is to completely ignore the tachometer. Focus on how the engine feels and sounds for when to shift. I've noticed that my 2.5 has a particular sound when it needs to up-shift when keeping a steady speed. Pay attention for sounds like this.

Unfortunately, there is never a set rpm for when to shift. You will need to let the engine go to higher rpm's if accelerating pretty quickly. Likewise, you don't need high rpm's if you are accelerating slowly. I'd suggest paying attention to how an automatic transmission shifts the next time you are in a car with an auto.
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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True, but other forms of friction and resistance do not follow those rules ...
"A little inaccuracy sometimes saves a ton of explanation.”
― Saki

 

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So maybe I wrote the question wrong? Or maybe you read it wrong. I was saying I don't care about mpg so much. Im perfectly happy with what im getting and 75-80 is pretty slow for my freeway at 6am. youll probably get flashed and flipped off if you go any slower. My question is the shift points and is it cool to go above 3k. At the top of 4th going up hill around 29-3k the car starts pulling nicely . Is it ok to take it to 3500+? I just want to take care of my new investment and don't want to harm the engine. Normally I shift in the 28-31k range. And has anyone mastered the hill assist. I find it weird and can't get the hang of it. But I am enjoying the new world of stick shift..
You have nothing to worry about. I recently had a 2013 CVT as a loaner car for a couple of days. When you accelerated with a sense of urgency, the rpms would jump instantly from 2300 to around 4500 rpm. The CVT wouldn't be programmed this way if the engine couldn't take it.

That being said... when I test drove the 2013 6mt I found that it revved quite nicely from 3 to 4k. Shifting prior to 3000 rpm would take all the fun out of the vehicle. Is it as fun to drive as my wife's 2006 5mt Impreza? No, but I found it much more enjoyable than the CVT. Can't wait for my car to arrive.
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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str8 out of the manual ...
Yep, my 2011 manual sez the same -- but those shift points
look more like they're str8 from The Ministry Of Silly Walks.
Translated to equivalent rpm, they're all insanely low, AND
scattered all over -- with no apparent rhyme or reason.

... 1st to 2nd @ 15 mph = 2800 rpm to 1580 rpm
... 2nd to 3rd @ 25 mph = 2630 rpm to 1750 rpm
... 3rd to 4th @ 40 mph = 2800 rpm to 2100 rpm
... 4th to 5th @ 45 mph = 2360 rpm to 2010 rpm
... 5th to 6th @ 50 mph = 2230 rpm to 1880 rpm

Does the CVT keep it below 3000 rpm even under gentle
acceleration?

...but nothin' in TheRuleBook™ sez it has to make sense,

Looby
 
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