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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wasn't quite sure if this was best to post under Performance or under General Discussion. I opted for general discussion because I think this is definately a group project and it's of interest to anyone who wants to save a couple dollars at the pump... Ok, I have a 06' XE - I'm very happy with it and I choose it because of my needs and hopes that I could get generous gas savings + the utility of an incredible truck. (side note: I am very jeolouse of the 4x4 v6 out there but I can't have everything.) I also figure there's got to be other people out there like me that love their Frontier and want to get better MPG.

I'm going to keep a pretty in depth log of current MPG ratings + the effects of new additions/mods. Here's my current stats:
-2006 Nissan Frontier XE
-Preferred Package
-Automatic Tranny
-3600miles on odometer
-Current Avg: 400 miles every 7-8 days
-Gas Tank: 21.1 gallons
-Avg Mpg: 21.5
-Daily driving: 50/50 city/highway (Phoenix/Tempe driving)

As of right now I have not added any performance enhancements. I have a Extang Trifecta tonneau cover coming in on wednesday. A grounding kit coming on thursday. And I will be switching to synthetic fluids one wednesday/thursday . Gas fillup is next wednesday.

I'm going to need all the experts on this board to help me out if possible. What else can I do/ that you know of that will increase gas mileage. (the XE's are somewhat bastardized in the Intake market unfortunately, but if anyone knows of a CAI let me know)

Goal: 27-29mpg with 50/50 driving.

Thanks
 

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I know that magnaflow has an exhaust out for the 2.5L frontier, about the intake ill look into it, and let you know what I find.
 

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sonik said:
I wasn't quite sure if this was best to post under Performance or under General Discussion. I opted for general discussion because I think this is definately a group project and it's of interest to anyone who wants to save a couple dollars at the pump... Ok, I have a 06' XE - I'm very happy with it and I choose it because of my needs and hopes that I could get generous gas savings + the utility of an incredible truck. (side note: I am very jeolouse of the 4x4 v6 out there but I can't have everything.) I also figure there's got to be other people out there like me that love their Frontier and want to get better MPG.

I'm going to keep a pretty in depth log of current MPG ratings + the effects of new additions/mods. Here's my current stats:
-2006 Nissan Frontier XE
-Preferred Package
-Automatic Tranny
-3600miles on odometer
-Current Avg: 400 miles every 7-8 days
-Gas Tank: 21.1 gallons
-Avg Mpg: 21.5
-Daily driving: 50/50 city/highway (Phoenix/Tempe driving)

As of right now I have not added any performance enhancements. I have a Extang Trifecta tonneau cover coming in on wednesday. A grounding kit coming on thursday. And I will be switching to synthetic fluids one wednesday/thursday . Gas fillup is next wednesday.

I'm going to need all the experts on this board to help me out if possible. What else can I do/ that you know of that will increase gas mileage. (the XE's are somewhat bastardized in the Intake market unfortunately, but if anyone knows of a CAI let me know)

Goal: 27-29mpg with 50/50 driving.

Thanks
I will be following your progress as I'm in the market for a new
pickup and the Frontier is at the top of the list..
I'm thinking the XE with the 5 speed...

Good luck and keep us posted..

Ron D
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I just checked the Magna flow site and it's either not updated or its not available just yet. I'll call them tomorrow to see if I can order it.
 

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From my Mustang racing days I can tell you that switching to an electric and extending the air damn downward will improve your mileage significantly. The air damn will create an area of negative pressure behind it and draw more air through the radiator. This allows the efan to spin less.

Also, you can use narrower tires of the same diameter. The narrower tire has a smaller contact patch with the ground, and therefore requires less energy to overcome its adhesion to the ground to keep it rotating.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've ordered the K&N air filter today and while I'm under the hood I'll check at what I can with extending the air damn. I'm wondering if there's anything I can do with modifying a cold air intake from a 4cylinder 06' altima. I'm going to look into it.
 

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If your really serious you could also try to get rid of as much dead weight as possible.
door panels, rear seats, rear bed,
try an find some very light aluminum rims.
(you dont need air conditioning)


Your truck will be ugly and light as hell.
 

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sonik said:
I've ordered the K&N air filter today and while I'm under the hood I'll check at what I can with extending the air damn. I'm wondering if there's anything I can do with modifying a cold air intake from a 4cylinder 06' altima. I'm going to look into it.
K&N filter panels are garbage. The flow is increased as has been established over and over again compared to regular paper filters, however, the oil used to lubricate them inevitably deposits on the MAF sensor. At that point your A/F ratio gets screwed up and efficiency goes down.

I will also say something about cold air kits. If the kit contains an air inlet pipe made of metal, it is a hot-air kit. If the kit has an air box that is open to the engine bay, it is a hot-air kit. Dyno test will show horsepower increases from both of these kits, however, dyno tests are done with the hood open with a huge fan blowing at the engine compartment. This allows engine heat to escape. Therefore, dyno conditions never allow the engine compartment to increase its temperature to the point where power is robbed, as it would be under real world conditions.
 

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If you don't off-road and don't have fog lights, you can use the hole in the bumper for an air inlet for a ram-air system. Ram-air is a true cold-air system and has a slight supercharging effect at higher speeds. I build a custom ram-air kit for my mustang and it resulted in a noticeable improvement in power at highway speeds. Typically, for an improvement to be noticeable, it must offer an enhancement greater than a 10%.

gfronty05 said:
I know that magnaflow has an exhaust out for the 2.5L frontier, about the intake ill look into it, and let you know what I find.
Most aftermarket exhaust systems enhance horsepower by reducing back-pressure. This invariably has a negative impact on low-end torque. The reason why is that they are shifting the power curve toward the redline end of the powerband. This wins races at the track where you spend all your time above 3500 rpm, but power at the low-end of the power band is sacrificed. In real-world driving conditions, this is where you need it the most. If you want a fuel efficient vehicle, you need to increase engine efficiency from idle to 2500 rpm. Don't buy the cat-back.

Think about this: Ferrari has a special muffler with high back-pressure. This preserves low-end torque. Once a sufficiently high rpm and load has been reached, a valve opens that bypasses the muffler. At that point it is essentially an open pipe. Significant horsepower gains are then realized. This is how they get 400+hp from a 3.5L naturally aspirated engine.

Modifications done before the intake manifold, head porting, and mods from the headers to the tail-pipe that do nothing more than alter flow velocity do nothing more than shift the powerband of an ingine. They do not increase total power. There are a lot of ways in which total power is increased, but this is not one of them.
 

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kansasfrontier said:
If your really serious you could also try to get rid of as much dead weight as possible.
door panels, rear seats, rear bed,
try an find some very light aluminum rims.
(you dont need air conditioning)
Your truck will be ugly and light as hell.
Yah... I think that's out of the question. I don't want to reduce the integrity of the vehicle. (and its attractive value) For right now I will maintain the 15" rims that come stock.

jwtillema said:
If you don't off-road and don't have fog lights, you can use the hole in the bumper for an air inlet for a ram-air system. Ram-air is a true cold-air system and has a slight supercharging effect at higher speeds. I build a custom ram-air kit for my mustang and it resulted in a noticeable improvement in power at highway speeds. Typically, for an improvement to be noticeable, it must offer an enhancement greater than a 10%.
This is a very good idea, as I don't have fog lights and developing something like this should not be entirely too difficult. I'm going to look into this...
 

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jwtillema is absolutely right! k&n filters are no match up against paper. there have been multiple tests run on my bike showing that re-usable filters such as k&n starve the motor w/ fresh air.
i would definately consider that true ram air through the fog light holes in the fender. you can't go wrong.
lastly, i would also agree w/ trying to drop some weight. not necessarily strip her down to bare bones, but possibly replacing some parts w/ after market light weight aluminum.
these are all great ways of achieving you goal. good luck!
nick
 

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jwtillema
you mentioned narrow tires to reduce rolling resistance.

I heard once that some where on the Internet there is a chart
of tire MFG. tires and it gives rolling resistance.
It might have been put out by Consumer Reports not sure.
Does anyone on here know of such information being avalible?

This might help out Sonik in his quest for more MPG...

We could all use a little of that right now..

Ron D
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for the post regarding the tires. I'll be looking at them also. Ok. So I just installed the Extang Trifecta and I did a gas refill shortly after installation. *Just a side note: The Extang Trifecta was super easy to install. Besides the questionable need for the "Alternative Brackets" that were included the installation can be done by anyone.

Gas Usage Period: 5/10/2006 - 5/17/2006
Miles: 449.2
Gallons: 21.032
MPG: 21.36

Notes: Gas has been consistent since mile #5 when I purchased the Frontier. So if this magical gas fairy that blesses the Frontier around 3500 miles was suppose to come by, she either missed me or I have a late bloomer.
 

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Sonik - I'm with ya' my man!

I'm a performance junkie too, but not in the traditional sense. While many will associate high-performance with speed and power, I consider fuel efficiency as a performance indicator too.

I also have a 4 cylinder Fronty (2006). It serves as my daily commuter and Home Depot hauler. I thought about the V6, but quite honestly, I would never utilize all of that towing capacity and payload. Now, with gas prices as they are and not trending downward anytime soon (sorry, V6 compadres), I'm glad I chose the QR25 4 cylinder over the more gas-thirsty VQ40 V6. I'm okay with getting blown-off the line at stoplights...I'm happy that I can get 400+ miles to a tank.

My fuel economy gains didn't fully materialize until around 5,700 miles. The engine components, seals, gaskets etc. need time to seat themselves. Once they do, the engine compression rate increases, thus yeilding greater efficiencies. Here's a list of items that I have installed or perform in my XE Fronty in my quest for greater "performance":

1) Keep tires properly inflated - this is one of the best and most impactful ways to increase fuel economy. Our tires are rated at 35 PSI max. I have mine pumped to 40 PSI. A slightly rougher ride...but not unbearable. Once my stockers wear out, I plan to purchase low rolling resistance tires like the ones used by delivery trucks - has a hard, smooth center bead with outer zig-zag rib patterns. For companies that use delivery fleets, tire efficiency is tantamount...take a look at UPS truck tires next time. I don't know where to purchase etc...I'll do that when the time comes.

2) Slow down - what's the rush all about anyway, right? Speeds above 65 mph really make a dent in reducing fuel economy...I keep it to 65 and leave my radar detector at home. Other actions: moderate acceleration, coast to stops (only when allowable otherwise, you'll have pissed off tailgaters), try not to use brakes - there's some thrills for you. It makes sense though...we expend energy to overcome inertia and get moving. If we wanted to max-out that fuel usage, we'd just coast until we stop. Using the brakes just coverts that spent energy into heat (brake pads).

3) Lighten the load - some previous posts have already notated this so I will not expand.

4) Improve engine performance - meaning, don't make the engine work any harder than it has too. So, oil-based air filters (K&N, Airhog etc) will help improve airflow and thus, reduce the amount of vacuum strength needed to pull the same amount of air volume. I don't use the full CAI systems, but use a middle-of-the-road solution and just replaced my paper element with a K&N...kept all other intake ducting. Later on, after my warranty expires, I plan to remove the clutch-driven fan with an electric one...again, to reduce the engine load.

5) Aerodynamics - you've already taken the right step here, so I won't comment. I've done the same. There isn't much we can do in improve our moving "bricks". The only other related item is that I will always roll-up the windows and use fresh-air vent (no a/c) when traveling at highway speed.

I've done about a dozen refill-n-reset (odometer) measurements - for both city and highway cycles..each exclusively as city stop-n-go driving and steady 65 mph highway. My results thus far:

CITY = 22 mpg

HIGHWAY = 26 mpg

So, if I really granny-foot it on a long road trip, I can "theoretically" attain 546 miles (21 gallon tank x 26 mpg) on a single tank. Realistically though, it's more like 430ish.

One thing that isn't vehicle-related...I'll opt to walk or ride my bike to go to the local coffee shop instead of making a 5 minute drive. Short drives kill efficiency since the engine has not had time to reach optimal operating tempurature.

Here's some useful web links:

www.maxmpg.org - another Fronty member who is passionate about fuel performance

www.cartalk.com/content/features/fueleconomy


4Banger
 

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Good post 4Banger

"Sonik" are you using any kind of spread sheet to record your efforts?
I think some of the guys have some nice ones out there ,,,maybe one
of them will share a template for us to use..???

Keep us posted on your progress..

Ron D
 

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4Banger on my last 4 fill-ups I have averaged 21.45mpg. I could very easily as well get 400 miles out of a tank, but guess what I have the V6. I have the extra power of the V6 and the gas mileage of the 4cyl, I guess I got the best of both worlds.

Will
 

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I have a 2006 Frontier in a 4x4 CC and I am getting 19.20 MPG 8)
I think I can get it even better if I stop stomping the rice burners in their Civics :twisted:
 
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