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Old 11-01-2014, 07:33 PM
 
Location: Wooster, Ohio
875 posts, read 651,855 times
Reputation: 1219

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The emission controls and reduction in compression ratios had a devastating effect on performance and economy after 1970. Those were sad times. Even the six cylinder compacts were gas guzzlers.

Engines did not improve until the advent of the microprocessor. My 1988 Mercury Tracer was economical and ran well, but was slow. My 1997 Pontiac Grand Am with the quad 4 got decent mileage, and was quick.
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Old 11-01-2014, 07:41 PM
 
4,711 posts, read 10,518,783 times
Reputation: 3745
The worst mileage I ever got in a stock vehicle back then was a '70 F-250 2WD with the 360 inch V-8.

That pig barely went 5 miles on a gallon....empty or loaded! Even at 30 sumthin cents a gallon, that got OLD!
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Old 11-01-2014, 07:57 PM
 
48,519 posts, read 80,998,062 times
Reputation: 17978
At what point I have no idea. I do know in 1966 I got rid of my 57 Chevy that got average of 9 MPG. It was souped up tho as we said then. I went to a Volkswagon because it got the astounding mileage of 25MPG on highway. Saved a lot of money even at cheap gas price then when going to college .By the way; I sold the 57 and paid cash for new VW which cost less than 2000 dollars. I 1975 I bought a new Pontiac Bonneville hard top for 6500 out the door. It was a beauty but workmanship was crappy starting then;constantly in shop and seldom fixed really by GM warranty.
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Old 11-01-2014, 08:07 PM
 
Location: Secure, Undisclosed
1,967 posts, read 1,193,440 times
Reputation: 3595
I don't recall the phrase "gas guzzler" back in the early 1970s. Gas was 26 - 28 cents per gallon where we bought ours. In fact, all of us would chip in a buck and we could cruise all night. And whoever was driving that night got a full tank of gas out of the deal.

I had a '67 Pontiac Executive (a 2-door Bonneville). I'm pretty sure it didn't get mileage. It got yardage.

By 1977, gas was all the way up to $1.33 per gallon and we thought the world had ended.

(True story: Assigned to Saudi Arabia during Desert Storm. Gas there was - no kidding, 25 cents per gallon. In 1991. It felt like old home week.)
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Old 11-01-2014, 08:14 PM
 
8,853 posts, read 7,333,347 times
Reputation: 11785
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rescue3 View Post
I don't recall the phrase "gas guzzler" back in the early 1970s. Gas was 26 - 28 cents per gallon where we bought ours. In fact, all of us would chip in a buck and we could cruise all night. And whoever was driving that night got a full tank of gas out of the deal.

I had a '67 Pontiac Executive (a 2-door Bonneville). I'm pretty sure it didn't get mileage. It got yardage.

By 1977, gas was all the way up to $1.33 per gallon and we thought the world had ended.

(True story: Assigned to Saudi Arabia during Desert Storm. Gas there was - no kidding, 25 cents per gallon. In 1991. It felt like old home week.)
Yeah but back home we didn't have Mercedes and BMW large sedans for taxi cabs and men beating women nearly to death if they show a wrist or ankle. Back home you couldn't sell a nearly new Playboy magazine for $20 or more depending on how desperate the Arab yard worker was (I made $60 from two Playboy magazines).
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Old 11-01-2014, 08:29 PM
 
Location: I am right here.
4,859 posts, read 3,711,309 times
Reputation: 15267
I was in school in the 70s, and I remember riding in my grandpa's HUGE boat of a car...have no idea what kind it was, because I did not pay attention to that kind of stuff...but I remember him being so proud that he was getting 10 miles per gallon in that sucker. I just remember that it was very long, and to me, seemed very regal.
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Old 11-01-2014, 08:49 PM
 
2,024 posts, read 4,470,760 times
Reputation: 1991
I drive a 1978 Mercury Grand Marquis with a 460 based 514 cid engine and a 1975 Oldsmobile Ninety Eight with a 455 and a 1979 Ford F250 with a 460 and a 3.73 rear axle ratio. The Mercury with the 514 and a Quick Fuel carburetor seems to get the best fuel mileage of the three which is in the mid teens highway mileage.
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Old 11-01-2014, 10:37 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
11,042 posts, read 11,455,634 times
Reputation: 17204
Quote:
Originally Posted by woxyroxme View Post
318s were small V8s in those days, there were 440, 455, 400, 460 V8s that got single digit MPGs back then. I remember when the Volare/Aspen came out (Duster as a family sedan) it got 17MPG with a 225 slant six which was considered good then.

The cars we had then:

1969 Pontiac Catalina 400 V8 - single digit MPG
1969 Mercury Marquis 460 V8 - single digit MPG
1977 Chrysler New Yorker 400 V8 - 9 MPG
1978 Plymouth Fury 318 V8 - 12 MPG
They still are. I have a 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee with a 5.2 liter V8 that is the Chrysler 318 with a metric system name. It's a great engine.

I once owned a Dodge Polara with a 383 and 2-barrel carb. It got about 12 mpg if you drove conservatively, half that if you stuck your foot through the firewall.
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Old 11-01-2014, 10:49 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
1,522 posts, read 2,861,279 times
Reputation: 2113
I never owned a car with a bigger engine than the 225 slant 6 on my 1968 Dodge Dart. That would be 3.7 litres in today's terms. I thought it was a guzzler, always getting between 18-20 MPG. I traded it in for a VW Beetle that got 25-28 MPG. I traded that Beetle for my first brand new car, a 1978 VW Bus, and was shocked that it could only manage 20 MPG at best! I kept the bus only nine months, and traded it in on a new 1978 VW Rabbit when the 1979s were coming out. The Rabbit got 28-30 mpg. I have bought gas for as low as 18.9 cents a gallon, but I never thought wasting it was worthwhile. Now that gasoline is so expensive, I am glad I still drive vehicles that get great MPG. I will never again own a car with a bigger engine than a 4 cylinder.
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Old 11-02-2014, 01:17 AM
 
Location: Eastern Missouri
3,054 posts, read 5,027,908 times
Reputation: 1377
Quote:
Originally Posted by rlrl View Post
MPG tests by Consumer Reports in 1973 of cars with V8 engines found Consumer Reports testers complimenting any V8 cars that made 15 mpg or more on a 300 mile trip. Such cars were :

Dodge Dart (318 V8): 15 mpg "gas mileage was respectable for a V8"

Dodge Coronet (318): 15 mpg "best gas mileage of the group"

Chev Monte Carlo (350) 15 mpg "respectable gas mileage"

Pontiac Grand Prix (455 V8) 16 mpg "chalked up the best gas mileage of any V8 tested this year"

would this mean that these cars were moving out of the "gas guzzler" category? or do you still consider them gas guzzlers back then? I know today these figures would obviously be considered gas guzzlers

Notice the largest engine got the best mpg . Why? Because it didn't struggle to pull the vehicle it was in as bad as the too little of engines. Of course chevy engines always got horrible mpg in the 60's and 70's compared to everything else on the road, especially their 454 and 427, 402 and 396 engines. People ask why I wouldn't redo the 7 mpg 454 in my Studebaker and instead built the 455 Pontiac and put in it. 18+mpg and more power from the Pontiac than the 454, my reply is why wouldn't I ? You also have to remember on the times, no compression engines across the board as the epa stupidity had killed that & hurt all engines in the 70's on power and mpg.
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