Gas Mileage [Archive] - Bimmerfest - BMW Forums

: Gas Mileage

02-16-2012, 11:58 AM
Have been disappointed in the gas mileage of my 2011 535XiGT. There are about 7,000 miles on our vehicle, and combined road and street mpg averages only between 19 - 20. We alway fill with premium gas. We typically drive conservatively, and don't understand why the gas mileage is not higher? One of the reason why we did not purchase the 550Xi was the mileage issue. Would appreciate any advice or mileage comparisions that could be offered. Has anyone found a fuel brand that consistantly offers higher mileage?

02-16-2012, 02:10 PM
my 550 averages about 16 mpg. You're doing much better than mine. 50% h'way.

02-16-2012, 05:09 PM
I'd say I'm about where you are with 50-50 driving. In just city, I'm around 17-18. On highway, I'm 24-25.

02-16-2012, 06:28 PM
ditto for me. I am getting about 19 mph in mixed driving. I find myself driving differently with the energy recovery system. I used to always have my foot on the accelerator of the X5, feathering power (unless braking). I think this is left over from driving my 2002. Now with the 535GT I let the car coast whenever I can. I am amazed at how long it will coast effortlessly even though it is turning the alternator... I take my foot off the gas and let the injectors shut off.

I have not tested it yet, but I wonder how cruise control affects gas mileage. While I think it normally saves gas on other cars - does cruise control always keep gas flowing through the injectors? When I drive on the freeways I coast on the downhill sections.

02-16-2012, 09:11 PM
I have seen the charging occur while on cruise, but it takes a fairly long grade to do it. In fact, on one long grade, while in cruise, it actually downshifted a couple of gears by itself - I'd never had a transmission do that on its own while in cruise.

While in Germany, I averaged about 23mpg on mine, and that saw maybe 350 miles on the Autobahn, at the max breakin speed of 100mph at times, and generally 70-80mph the rest of the time. In driving it back from the Performance center to NH, mostly interstate, sitting mostly at about 70-75mph on cruise, I got over 30mpg on two tanks. It's lower now during the winter, partly because of the temps, but partly because of the winter tires don't roll as freely. I'm getting in the low 20's mixed driving, but I'm not driving much...retired, and most of the things I need are close by, so I have to take it out and get it really warmed up occasionally to ensure the oil isn't getting too much moisture in it. I did a bit over 700miles in Germany, and the trip back home after redelivery was a bit over 1000, so the vehicle didn't have a lot of miles on it. On one longer trip last fall, about 2500 miles, I averaged about 27mpg, and that included a week of running around town when at a couple of stops. The last day on the way home was about 1000-miles, and the overall trip mileage slowly went back up.

Make sure the tire pressure is where it should be. I've been mostly using Shell, but on trips, will use anything. If you aren't aware of it, BMW along with about 5-6 other manufacturers have recommended fuel brands. This list changes as formulations change and the tests get repeated. check out for that consortium's recommendations. BMW's stand is you should either use one of those on the approved list on a regular basis, or periodically use a fuel detergent engine cleaner addative on a periodic basis. Cheaper and easier to just use one of their approved gasolines. BTW, that consortium include a bunch of different car manufacturers.

02-16-2012, 10:49 PM
I only occasionally use Cruise and I have never seen the recovery indicator come on. This is why I wonder if fuel economy suffers while in cruise, particularly if the freeway has grades.

I run my tire pressures 2 lbs high to decrease rolling resistance. Comfort does not suffer.

I admit to using Costco gas - which may or may not be formulated with Top Tier levels of detergent. That is why I also will add Techron every few months.

I have been pleased with the fuel economy of the 535. Certainly beats my previous 4.4.

02-17-2012, 06:20 AM
interesting that sunoco canada is on there but not US.

02-17-2012, 07:07 AM
I was looking at the list of top tier retailers ( and noticed BP was not on the list.

I found the following info on another forum from 04/2010:

I use a lot of BP gas and when I came across a BP ad touting thier product called "Invigorate" I emailed them and asked how did it compare to "Top Tier" gas. Heres thier reply. You can decide for yourself.

"Thanks for your note and interest in quality fuels.
BP's Fuels Technology group has tested BP gasoline with Invigorate and has demonstrated that all of our grades of gasoline with Invigorate perform as well or better than gasoline meeting the Top Tier standards.
Top Tier was a program started by GM and supported by a five other automakers. Ford (which recommends BP gasoline with Invigorate) and Chrysler and many other manufacturers are not members. The Top Tier program was created in response to one of the member's problems with fouling fuel injectors in certain models of their engines in the early
To become a Top Tier gasoline supplier, the petroleum company or fuel marketer must submit their gasoline detergent additive to GM for testing at a certain dose. The applicant must sign a pledge to use that additive and dose for at least one year.
BP and some other major fuel marketers decided not to join the Top Tier program. BP's reason is simple: BP reserves the right to determine what goes into our gasoline for the benefit of our customers and does not want others dictating what to sell to our customers. We are confident that our gasoline will perform well in our customer's vehicles; in fact BP guarantees the performance of our gasoline in writing.
Thank you for your inquiry and interest, it sounds like you are interested in quality fuels. Why not give BP gasoline with Invigorate a try! It helps cars run younger for longer!
Kind regards,
US FUELS Marketing"

We had been using mid or premium from Kroger for the last 3 years in our 740 before we sold it, never had a fuel system issue. BP price for 87 has come down to within .03 a gallon of Kroger before discounts. 93 is still .15 higher at BP. We usually have at least .10 off a gallon discount at Kroger, sometimes .20. So at .25-.35 a gallon more for BP, its not worth it to me.

I would love to run the super duper gas from Germany/Austria, but not at $8.50 a gallon. On the way back from Vienna to Munich, we took about an hour of the trip off the beaten path. My Autobahn speeds where always over 80 and usually between 90-100 with a slow accel up to 120 at one point. Computer claimed 24.5 prior to getting into traffic in Munich for the 4 hour or so trip.

CC Brown
02-18-2012, 08:19 AM
I have a 2010 535i GT with 23,000 miles . We took a 9000 mile trip around the country and up into Canada. We averaged 26.7 mpg by the trip computer. When we did an actual calculation it was generally up to a mile per gallon less. The last 2000 miles driving shows 27.7mpg. We recently took a trip from Atlanta to N.C. On this trip we got 33 mpg on trip computer and actual measurement. We used Costco gas-lots of places now have additional additives that bring it to tier 1. We have adaptive cruise control and use it almost all the time on the highway. The speed limit was 55 to 70 mph and we go about 4 miles over that.

The big thing I have noticed is how much the A/C affects the mpg. We get our best mileage when the A/C is not running. Driving at 74 mph or less w/o AC we get over 30 mpg always. Same speed 98 degree we get 28mpg big difference. At 80 mph it drop below 30 to 28.

The GT has a relative high CoF of drag .34 compared to my S-class mercedes of .28 so it takes more gas to move it thru the air at higher speeds.

So drive in cooler weather below 74 mph and see what happens!

02-18-2012, 07:49 PM
wife has almost 9000 miles on her 535xi GT, I would say mostly city driving (highway driving is usually during busy times, so stop and go as well), and we've had the blizzaks on for most of those miles. she's averaged 19.1 mpg. kind of funny since we traded in the 06 750Li in order to get better gas mileage. that got 18.9mpg . . . ha! I expect it to improve with the regular summer tires, and I've gotten 26-27mpg on the highway. wife complains about the mpg, but I think it boils down to driving style. I enjoy occasional spirited driving, yet still average 22 mpg in my vert. makes me wonder just exactly how my wife drives . . . ;)

02-19-2012, 08:16 PM
Where I live in MD, I have found that one chain of convenience stores (Highs Dairy Stores) provides me with the best mpgs in both gas and diesel vehicles. The gas is labeled Shell and Citgo, but their mpg performance isn't any different.

BTW, if you look at my sigpic, all I can say is that your individual mileage may vary. :eek:

02-21-2012, 12:20 PM
If I drive a lot of city, it is about 13~14. If I do a pure highway, it is @ 21 at best.

02-21-2012, 02:27 PM
I drove from Amsterdam to Paris, around 500 km, with 93 km/h and 6.9l/100 km on average. It was mainly highway. I was amazed to be as low with 530d. In the city it is about 10-11 l/100 km on short drive.

03-18-2012, 10:11 AM
Drove from Atlanta down to Savannah in our new (800 mile) 2012 535i GT. Had the cruise set to 84 and averaged 25.7 on the way down. 24.8 on the way back.

03-19-2012, 06:56 AM
update: visited the in-laws this weekend. 500 miles roundtrip, almost all highway, cruise set at 78 mph with a/c on. averaged 28 mpg (450 miles, 16.05 gallon). wife still getting 19 mpg with half city/half highway driving, and still complains. I pointed out that even though she drives 20K miles/year, if gas goes from $4/gal to $5/gal, it will cost her an extra $20/week in gas. relatively small price to pay for such a nice car . . .

03-19-2012, 07:35 AM
Thanks for info, and taking time to respond. Much appreciated.

03-19-2012, 01:41 PM
How would you like the equivalent of around $9-10/gallon like most of Europe has to pay? Last April, I filled up twice, and it cost me in the range of $140 each time in Germany, and the price of fuel has gone up a fair amount since then.

While the actual fuel cost is similar to here, their taxes are MUCH more. But, at least in many countries, their roads are better. You don't see potholes very often in Germany primarily because they put a lot more base and overall thickness in them, and maintain the grade and drainage better. Lived there for a few years and really enjoyed it.

Now, if we'd get our act together and not be a debtor country, plus the fact gas is priced in dollars, things might improve. our lousy balance of trade pushes the value of the dollar down, making fuel in world terms go up since the dollar is worth less. Until then, don't count on it.