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Old 07-08-2011, 07:20 AM
 
Location: Suffolk County, NY
874 posts, read 2,489,291 times
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This entire thread makes me think of how salespeople at dealers know nothing about the cars they are selling. It would be nice if, when purchasing a vehicle such as this, the salesperson can tell the customer not only that the vehicle should be used with premium fuel (which most of them probably do not even know that much), but also if the salesperson can explain why it is recommended.

I went to a number of dealerships when I bought my only brand new car which happened to be a 2003 Civic. None of the salespeople at the dealerships were able to tell me how many years the engine or transmission had been around (I would not buy a car with an engine that has not been around for at least a few years). None of them had an answer for any questions about the vehicles in which the answer could not be found on the window sticker. I had to do all research myself. It is ridiculous.

The lack of salesperson knowledge was not limited to Honda dealerships either. At the time I was going to Toyota, Ford and GM dealers and the lack of knowledge about the cars they were selling was rampant.
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Old 07-08-2011, 07:31 AM
 
Location: NJ
17,579 posts, read 39,742,240 times
Reputation: 16145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Egobop View Post
The lack of salesperson knowledge was not limited to Honda dealerships either. At the time I was going to Toyota, Ford and GM dealers and the lack of knowledge about the cars they were selling was rampant.
I've been shopping for a Dodge Challenger. Apart from knowing what one looks like most salespeople know almost nothing about them. Or worse they tell you things that are just not true at all.
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Old 07-08-2011, 07:40 AM
 
Location: Maryland Heights, MO
3,293 posts, read 6,997,414 times
Reputation: 2003
Agree Ego, it's part of the reason i ended up buying the volkswagen. The salepeople seemed to know as much about the vehicle (often more) than myself, even though i'd been researching the car for quite some time...on top of it, many of them seemed to be VW owners/drivers as well which gave me a little more of a warm fuzzy.

As to Thinking Man...That manual was written by technical writers directly related to the manufacturing of the car. They were informed by the engineers who designed your engine internals, and established the specifications and requirements for the vehicles. If anyone has the "know how" to tell you what the car requires, it'd be the people who made the car. Acura isn't going to be getting any takebacks from the fuel companies because you buy 91 octane fuel instead of 87, but some guy who designed that motor was expecting you to put premium fuel in it to use it the way it was designed to be used. In order to protect the engine from the ill informed, technology was there to help preserve the motor in the instance that someone didn't follow the recommendations of the manual, but oh well i guess.

PS, do you follow the other recommendations in your manual? Oil Change intervals and oil specifications, Tire Pressures, Air Filter Change intervals, etc? The hope here is that you replace parts BEFORE they go bad, and cause negative effects on the vehicle. I know a lot of people tend to run conventional motor oil when the manual calls for synthetic, because they're trying to change the one time cost of doing the oil change, not realizing that you could run the synthetic oil for nearly 3 times as long...offsetting the cost, and the time consumed to change it every 3k miles. Read your manual, get to know your car, and enjoy the driving!

PS, there might even be an Acura forum out there to help you make this decision easier.
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Old 07-08-2011, 08:13 AM
 
8,402 posts, read 20,333,399 times
Reputation: 6775
Quote:
Originally Posted by flynavyj View Post
Wouldn't really call a 325xi a performance car.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunbar42 View Post
Not to mention the 318 wasn't being sold by BMW in The States in 2006.
Let's not split hairs. Maybe it doesn't fall strictly into the "performance" category but compared to 80% of the models available, any BMW sedan is a performance car. Performance isn't just about speed.

The 318 was an example that people would possibly recognize, Doesn't really matter if it was sold here to get the point across that the loss of performance by using regular gas probably rendered the 325 at about what the 318 would normally do.

The point of both comments was to illustrate the stupidity of not even trying the recommended fuel, and then saying the car was fast enough.

Lighten up, Francis.
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Old 07-08-2011, 09:31 AM
 
Location: Chicago
38,690 posts, read 89,161,233 times
Reputation: 29446
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thinking-man View Post
actually no. it's not. What i meant was that i don't mind losing performance (a few HP), but if i lose enough MPG, then it might not make sense. (ie. if i lose more in MPG than what i'm saving by putting regular, then what's the point?)
So to summarize, loss of MPG is a bigger issue for you than loss of performance -- which is exactly what I said.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thinking-man View Post
I care mostly about 'hurting' the car's engine.....i'd like to avoid that.....but i'm not going to blindly accept what the 'manual' says. some folks here brought up some points that make it more logical to put in Premium though.
The people who wrote the manual didn't select a fuel grade at random, nor did they recommend a higher grade just to snicker as their customers needlessly pay more for fuel. If they say to use premium, use premium. They're the ones who built your car; they know what it needs to run properly.

Last edited by Drover; 07-08-2011 at 10:23 AM..
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:21 AM
 
14,780 posts, read 35,977,311 times
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flynavyj and Drover bring up a good point that routinely bugs me on this forum as well as others. That is people second guessing what the engineers and designers who work for the company that built and warrantied the car say it needs. From fuel recommendations to maintenance schedules people always seem to think they "know better" than the manufacturer. Some of these people are pushing to err on the side of caution, change the only every 3k even though the manual says 10k, I don't agree it's necessary, but at least it's not going to damage anything. Others are just looking to cheap out, use a lower grade fuel, use regular oil instead of synthetic, etc. and those are the things that can actually cause damage.

Why is it so hard to accept the fact that the manufacturers don't invent this stuff out of thin air and actually put extensive thought and planning into those recommendations? Until you start modifying the car or engaging in racing and things, just stick to what they tell you, they really don't have a reason to lie.
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:36 AM
 
3,673 posts, read 4,931,180 times
Reputation: 2422
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
flynavyj and Drover bring up a good point that routinely bugs me on this forum as well as others. That is people second guessing what the engineers and designers who work for the company that built and warrantied the car say it needs. From fuel recommendations to maintenance schedules people always seem to think they "know better" than the manufacturer. Some of these people are pushing to err on the side of caution, change the only every 3k even though the manual says 10k, I don't agree it's necessary, but at least it's not going to damage anything. Others are just looking to cheap out, use a lower grade fuel, use regular oil instead of synthetic, etc. and those are the things that can actually cause damage.

Why is it so hard to accept the fact that the manufacturers don't invent this stuff out of thin air and actually put extensive thought and planning into those recommendations? Until you start modifying the car or engaging in racing and things, just stick to what they tell you, they really don't have a reason to lie.
you know....They said the same thing about Priests and "holly men" .....
Look where we are now!

There's nothing wrong with questioning things you're told and investigating for yourself to make sure they're accurate. Again, i personally needed more information before accepting what's in the manual. I've since decided to put in Premium as noted in my post on the first page (based on the explanations provided by folks here and me reading up on this in various papers/studies.
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:40 AM
 
14,780 posts, read 35,977,311 times
Reputation: 14356
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thinking-man View Post
you know....They said the same thing about Priests and "holly men" .....
Look where we are now!

There's nothing wrong with questioning things you're told and investigating for yourself to make sure they're accurate. Again, i personally needed more information before accepting what's in the manual. I've since decided to put in Premium as noted in my post on the first page (based on the explanations provided by folks here and me reading up on this in various papers/studies.
Well, there is nothing wrong with verifying something for yourself and gaining some knowledge on why. My post was not directed at you in particular, more a general statement about a lot of threads on the forum lately.

In the case of the priests, well they had a pretty darn good reason to lie about what some of them were up to. I don't see where a car manufacturer benefits from telling people the car needs premium or you can change the oil every 10k.
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Old 07-09-2011, 08:21 PM
 
Location: Santa Monica, CA
1,626 posts, read 3,271,920 times
Reputation: 730
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drover View Post
Uhm... neglecting the fact that this article is 10 years old, best I can tell it supports the proposition that premium makes a difference in performance.
It's the only publication I've ever seen actually test this claim. Everyone else just blindly accepts what the manufacturer says. And you conveniently left out this quote:

"but neither the BMW nor the Saab suffered any drivability problems while burning regular unleaded fuel."

Yes, if you drive a turbocharged, supercharged or high compression engine premium fuel does make a difference. But even if you run regular fuel the car will drive fine and you won't damage anything.

As far why we might question the infallible engineers at the auto companies. Well Toyota recommends regular fuel in a new Camry V6 . In the Lexus ES350, which has the same engine, compression ratio, and HP rating, Lexus recommends premium fuel (source.) Kind of hard to see how the Lexus badge could affect the octane requirement. I think it's the marketing people at Lexus overruling the engineers in this case...
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Old 07-09-2011, 09:49 PM
 
Location: Suffolk County, NY
874 posts, read 2,489,291 times
Reputation: 452
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunbar42 View Post
It's the only publication I've ever seen actually test this claim. Everyone else just blindly accepts what the manufacturer says. And you conveniently left out this quote:

"but neither the BMW nor the Saab suffered any drivability problems while burning regular unleaded fuel."

Yes, if you drive a turbocharged, supercharged or high compression engine premium fuel does make a difference. But even if you run regular fuel the car will drive fine and you won't damage anything.

As far why we might question the infallible engineers at the auto companies. Well Toyota recommends regular fuel in a new Camry V6 . In the Lexus ES350, which has the same engine, compression ratio, and HP rating, Lexus recommends premium fuel (source.) Kind of hard to see how the Lexus badge could affect the octane requirement. I think it's the marketing people at Lexus overruling the engineers in this case...
If you read some of the Toyota forums you will find that some owners of the 2011 Camry with the 3.5 V6 are complaining about engine pinging when depressing the throttle pedal. These engines have a 10.8:1 compression ratio and if I owned one I would use a higher octane rated fuel.

I am not sure which Saab engine the article in question was referring to but Saab does make engines with variable compression ratios. These are referred to as an SVC (Saab Variable Compression) engine and have a cylinder head with integrated cylinders. The head is pivoted at the crankshaft by use of a hydraulic actuator and can be moved by up to 4 degrees. The engine management system adjusts this angle which changes the compression ratio in response to engine load, engine speed and fuel quality. The engine can change itself from an 8:1 compression ratio to a 14:1 compression ratio.

Some BMW engines (referred to as Valvetronic) not only adjust the timing but also adjust the maximum lift of the valves by by use of a conventional camshaft along with an eccentric shaft with a series of levers and roller followers that are activated by a stepper motor. A computer changes the phase of the eccentric cam to change the action of the valves. This means that the maximum lift of the valves is constantly changing as necessary.

There are other designs by other companies such as ones that actually use hydraulic motors within the head to change rocker arms from one cam lobe onto another to change the actual valve lift.

The above listed engine designs are not the norm and I personally would not suggest the use of anything other than higher octane fuel in the vehicle in the original post or in the Camry or Lexus that you are referring to.

Also; it is very possible to have pre-detonation occur in an engine and have it not effect the driveability of the vehicle until damage actually occurs. With the cost of the parts alone needed to repair damage done by pre-detonation; why take the chance to save just a few dollars at the pump with each refill of the tank? The majority of people would not be repairing the engine themselves so once you add in the cost of labor it REALLY is not worth the risk.
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