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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Whenever you test drive a vehicle, check the tire pressure first. Most cars nowadays let you do that right from the driver's seat.

Reasons: 1.) Most vehicles (in my experience) come from the factory with the tires way overinflated. It's partly because they use high pressure/high volume compressed air to seat the tires on the rims, and they're often filled to 45-50 psi in the process. It's also supposedly because softer tires allow the vehicles to move around and bounce more on the delivery trucks.

2.) Also, the kids at the dealership prepping the new vehicles very often don't take the time or effort to bend down to adjust the pressures on all four tires of every vehicle they prep.

Result: The ride quality can be severely compromised by overinflated tires. The ride will be stiffer, bumps will jolt the vehicle harder, etc.

I can easily imagine that people have declined to buy certain vehicles because of the compromsed ride quality, without realizing it's just those 50 psi tires.
 

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Buddy worked at a VW dealership and said they put all the tires to 50PSI on purpose, not an oversight but to prevent flat spotting when the vehicles sit on the lot for extended periods. They are supposed to air them down upon use, but sometimes forget or just aren't motivated.
 

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Also, if your brand new SC is getting miserable gas mileage, check the pressure.
 
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Also, if your brand new SC is getting miserable gas mileage, check the pressure.
So what's the general rule? Lower pressure = softer ride but lower gas mileage whereas higher pressure = firmer ride but higher gas mileage?

I checked mine as I drove off the lot. All four tires were at 36psi which I believe is correct for the 18" Kumos. Ride is very good, still on my first tank of gas.

Oh and never trust the computer's mpg calculation as it's often off by as much as a couple mpg. Best to fill up your engine, record your mileage, drive it until near empty, refuel to full, record your mileage and calculate your mpg.

And think about downloading the Fuelly app which is great for tracking your gas mileage over time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Oh and never trust the computer's mpg calculation as it's often off by as much as a couple mpg. Best to fill up your engine, record your mileage, drive it until near empty, refuel to full, record your mileage and calculate your mpg.
This always comes up in gas mileage discussions. In theory, the car's computer system should be the most accurate calculator of mileage, since it measures the fuel actually being passed through the intake system and miles actually traveled.

Doing it the manual way is fraught with variables that affect accuracy - you would have to somehow drive the same way, return to the same gas pump at the same station, park in the same position for your refill, do it at the same time of day (for gasoline and car temperature reasons), and somehow make sure the pump shuts off at the exact same point in the refueling process. Even then, an air pocket in your tank could throw it off (we used to rock our cars back and forth after filling them and they would sometimes take another half-gallon or more).

My point is that other than a laboratory-level test setup, there is always some degree of inaccuracy in ANY kind of test. Some people believe the car companies purposely build in some error in the car's computer to make the mileage look better, and who knows if that's true.

Some people get all OCD about it, but I've done some testing of my own in the past and I'm comfortable with the mileage shown in the car's computer. You could say it's within my personal margin of error. ;)

EDIT: I guess this should maybe be in the gas mileage thread, so I might quote myself there.)
 

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Buddy worked at a VW dealership and said they put all the tires to 50PSI on purpose, not an oversight but to prevent flat spotting when the vehicles sit on the lot for extended periods. They are supposed to air them down upon use, but sometimes forget or just aren't motivated.
My first job was lot manager for a Ford dealer.. we used that same trick.. it also "helps" prevent the tires from freezing to the ground with less of a contact patch.:p (if you have that kind of climate). LOL.. that was many years ago, so glad to to know some tricks never change.
 

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... so glad to to know some tricks never change.
... then you'll be glad to know that the last time I went car shopping, they "lost" the keys to my trade-in after 'appraising' it, until I started yelling at them in front of other customers.
 
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... then you'll be glad to know that the last time I went car shopping, they "lost" the keys to my trade-in after 'appraising' it, until I started yelling at them in front of other customers.
I also like how they ask to make a copy of your drivers licence.. and then hold it hostage until they wear you down. :p Is it any wonder why people hate car shopping...
 
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