Re: 2003 Ford Escape Mileage
I also have 2003 Escape with a V6 engine and automatic trans. I did a little experimentation to find out what would give me the best milage under any conditions. Some had told me to take the car out of overdrive while driving in the city or under 40 miles an hour, so I tried this for a few tanks of gas. It seemed that the car drove a little better and was more responsive with the OD off in this situation, but had no effect on the gas milage and I think it may of gone down.
My usual journeys though are usually highway driving. I travel a few Interstates to get to work. The speed limit is 65 mph on these highways, but if you do the limit, others will be passing you up, honking their horns at you, flipping you the bird, for going so slow. So I went along with them and started to drive 75 to 80 mph on these interstates like everyone else. No tickets, cops can't give 2000 cars a ticket all at the same time. My gas milage was not what it was suppose to be. Taking it out of overdrive in the city and while doing under 40 mph, plus the 75 to 80 mph speed was not working.
So I did a turn around. I left the vehicle in OD ALL THE TIME, never took it out of overdrive no matter what the condition was, city or highway driving. I reduced my speed on the interstate to between 60 and 65 mph, stayed in the right lane and let everyone pass me.
My gas milage went from a pawltry 18 to 19 mpg to 23 and sometimes 24 mpg! I think the biggest contributor to the increase was the speed on the highway. There is some kind of valve in the engine that when under high demand, opens up and lets a major amount of fuel get to the engine to meet this demand. Ever hear the term, "my car is sucking gas", well, at those high speed that is exactly what it is doing...
From now on, I always keep the car in overdrive and limit my speed to 60 to 65 mph. One more thing, always check your tire pressure, make sure it is at where it is suppose to be, low pressure will eat into your gas milage.