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Gas Mileage

nielsm

Well-known member
I never understood why a rider would rev out a bike to over 4k rpm before shifting (unless running from an officer of the law). I shift by 2.5k rpm usually and get good gas mileage.
Depends on what you are used to. On my other two boxer bikes, it’d be rare to shift <4K RPM as you are way out of the power band and would end up lugging the engine and using more fuel. Redline on my GS is ~8500 and on the /5 is about 6500 but only a 4 speed (it is 50 years old!). On my S1000R, I’m usually shifting in the 6-10K RPM range & redline is 12K.

Big twin cruisers like the R18 and most Harleys & Indians are all about low end torque and the big pistons typically limit max RPM. For example, the R18 has a redline of only ~5700 RPM and max torque is at 3K, so the RPM range of usable power is much smaller than non-cruiser bikes.

My R18 is my first bike with a much smaller RPM range. It’s been an adjustment to getting used to shifting so early on it. The torque is so addictive though & sweet spot is 2500-3500 where it really pulls & elicits out loud giggles.
 

BobW

Active member
High RPM is relevant to the engine. What drives you batty about running an engine well within the "mid range" of it's design and by that I mean not "lugging it" nor "bouncing off red line"? Not everyone rides on the same type of roads under the same conditions and this motorcycle was made to be ridden and will happily handle a wide spectrum within obvious limitations. Try it, you might like it as it is a lot of fun. By the way, I get consistent 48-50 M.P.G. by both the on board computer and doing the math each fill up.
 

adlowe

New member
Pleased with my MPG. Much better than expected over the first 2k miles. Fuelly
As to the secrets:
1. Don't be an idiot playing with the throttle just to make noise.
2. See number 1.
3. See number 1.
4. Keep the bike in the best RPM range for power.

The first 3 seem to be most elusive for those who think only grandmas get decent MPG. Why they so freely disparage those who know what they're doing?
 

BobW

Active member
55 M.P.G.(U.S.), on part of today's 300+ mile ride. I've been getting 48-50 M.P.G.steadily as I've previously reported during mixed roads "spirited" riding and today I was able to do a more accurate "tourist mode" ride for a full tank. I filled up with 93 octane petrol near Asheville, NC and then rode the Blue Ridge Parkway south to where it terminates in Cherokee, NC - Smoky Mountains National Park. I then rode the area two lane roads and eventually hopped on Interstate 40 to head for home. The low fuel warning light came on at 162 miles and I stopped to fill the tank at 180.2 miles with the math working out to 55.2 M.P.G. The weather was clear with temperatures in the low 70s*(f), traffic was very light and with a posted speed limit of 45, I maintained between 40-50 +/- M.P.H. in "Driving Miss Daisy" mode using 3-4th gear a majority of the time. Approximately 55 miles of the 180 were on the Interstate with a down grade and I still weigh approximately 250 LBS. For me only as YMMV and outside of heavy stop and go traffic or sustained high speeds with the R-18's poor aerodynamics reducing petrol range I'm going to plan on 180 miles on a tank as a minimum on my normal mix of roads and "paces" ridden and with 200+ mile range being very realistic on backroad meanderings or similar. This engine is much like the "old" boxers where it took at least a couple service intervals to consider it really broken in, good stuff!!
 

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VARG

Active member
Site Supporter
Elite Member
last few days rode the TC for over 1200 miles, got avg 44 mpg, avg speed 60 mph.
The TC has about 4000 miles on it and is really coming into its own.
The performance has improved at both ends, and the exhaust tone has filled in considerably.
My Base started to reveal a most satisfactory burble, bark, growl and snort at about 4000 miles too, and happily the TC is following suit.
I do find myself wanting a 7th gear on occasion, usually when running in a pack.
 
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nielsm

Well-known member
As of today, my lifetime average has been 42.9MPG on my Classic with a couple thousand miles. My last tank was 46 MPG, so it is on an upward trajectory, but that also had a bit of a highway run, whereas most of my miles are backroads.
 

Calboy

Active member
4,800 miles and I'm doing a lot better. City riding with the occasional run on the freeway for 10 to 15 miles and I am @39.5 mpg
Not bad at all. I'm gonna go on a ride to the ocean and back pretty soon, and curious to see what I'm gonna get 260 miles later.
 

megraham

New member
Just got back from Arkansas. I have just under 2000 miles on my transcontinental (1600 for the 6 day trip). I am using the Fuelly app and my average is 55 mpg. Hard to believe but accurate
 

BobW

Active member
Just got back from Arkansas. I have just under 2000 miles on my transcontinental (1600 for the 6 day trip). I am using the Fuelly app and my average is 55 mpg. Hard to believe but accurate
I've posted the same results and added another "55" on my last ride. After 3000 miles or so the MPG rose from low 40's average to slowly keep increasing to 48-50 M.P.G.for a majority of my riding that has a good mix of roads and while using her full range of R.P.M.s. The 55-56 results have been on very tight with slower speed mountain roads or while moseying along like when I'm on the Blue Ridge Parkway. This is using 90- 93 octane "real gas" and/or 93 octane "blended" petrol. I was very happy to see these are now a constant M.P.G. that I can rely on.

I love the Ozarks too, what a great area to get to know your new ride! 🍻🍻
 

megraham

New member
I've posted the same results and added another "55" on my last ride. After 3000 miles or so the MPG rose from low 40's average to slowly keep increasing to 48-50 M.P.G.for a majority of my riding that has a good mix of roads and while using her full range of R.P.M.s. The 55-56 results have been on very tight with slower speed mountain roads or while moseying along like when I'm on the Blue Ridge Parkway. This is using 90- 93 octane "real gas" and/or 93 octane "blended" petrol. I was very happy to see these are now a constant M.P.G. that I can rely on.

I love the Ozarks too, what a great area to get to know your new ride! 🍻🍻
Hi Bob,

I was also burning the high grade. Lower octane would drop my mpg approx. 3 mpg
 

Allemande

New member
I never got 40mpg or above, so I have a question for the ones that do.
Do you guys stay in the power band most of the time and never short shift, or do you actually ride this bike as if it had a 300cc engine and ride it with the mind of a 85 year old rider?
What's the secret of your spectacular mpg?
On my new R18 classic I get 40 -42 mpg when I ride it hard and about 45-46 mpg when I ride more relaxed. No other secrets…
 

Slotheadslim

Active member
Elite Member
I run 93 octane with fuel stabilizer in my R18 Classic that has 1200 miles on it. I didn’t have a passenger. I took a 98 mile ride this morning and I’m guessing I was running around 50mph most of the time. I always gas up at the end of the ride and if I’m correct with the calculations I got about 50 mpg this trip.
 

R12C-R18TC

Active member
Site Supporter
Elite Member
The energy content in a gallon of "no alcohol" gas is 20% higher than the fuel with 15% corn. It will get you better gas mileage. What amazes me is how we think emotionally and not rationally about this issue. The cost and energy required to make a gallon of corn ethanol requires a government subsidy in order to break even. It is not wise to run an enterprise that is a net loss but our government supports it anyway.
 

blues n twos

New member
I've only covered 250 miles since I picked my Classic up a week ago but getting 51mpg to a UK gallon. I sometimes shift between 2500 and 3500 but more often than not below 2500 (y)

Jon
 
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