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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Is there a cure for my slight buyer remorse? ('05 Spectra)

I bought an '05 Spectra EX on May 11, a somewhat unplanned purchase due to a major electrical failure on my '99 Ford Escort. My Spectra has just 40000 miles on it, which turned my head a little bit regarding the buying decision. I reckon that's an honest figure since it came from a Toyota dealer. The Carfax appeared decent. Now I think that I should have taken more seriously some old reviews mentioning relatively poor city fuel economy with the automatic transmission. Last Monday I filled up for the first time and got recorded a shade under 20mpg. I made a 1040 mile round trip to retrieve stuff from my old car, and haven't done a fillup with strictly city miles since, but the needle is dropping quicker than I'd like to see. I think the transmission shifts into 3rd too soon, and goes back and forth between 2nd and 3rd more than it should. My guess is that's a design feature rather than a malfunction, but is there a reasonably priced retrofit that could boost its efficiency?
 

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Cerato S Hatch Auto
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At 40k miles, the car might be due for a service. Engine tune-up and change transmission fluid might improve matters, although the car doesn't have a good reputation for economy, as you have found. Take usual advice on tyre pressures and check odometer accuracy.
 

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2004 Optima 2.4 EX, 2005 Yamaha R1 (street) 2001 GSXR 1000 (track)
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It wouldn't hurt to inspect the brakes as well, to make sure all the pads are moving freely. It's a little tricky since it's only a 4 speed trans, when on the highway you'll probably be revving around 3000rpm. Just try to drive it easy and clock the mileage for a tank or two. All in all, they're decent cars. I had one come in the shop today with almost 150K miles on it, I was surprised how nice or shape it was in.
 

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2020 Hyundai Palisades
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2,964 Posts
as mentioned tune up and trans fluid change and have you checked the air filter ?? as you should be getting well over the 20 mpg.
 
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