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Discussion Starter #1
How do people go about maximising fuel efficiency while saving battery?

In Auto Edrive the car is very economical but runs out of battery very fast.
Running Save mode yields about 38 mpg in average in my experience.

I read of the BMW hybrid that running sport mode while the battery is above 55% does not charge the battery. it has yielded mid economy in the mid forties in my experience. Problem is you need to use manual gear shift or it will hold gears too long.

What do you do when you have either a long trip or lack the ability to charge for a period of time?

Thank you.
 

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How do people go about maximising fuel efficiency while saving battery?

In Auto Edrive the car is very economical but runs out of battery very fast.
Running Save mode yields about 38 mpg in average in my experience.

I read of the BMW hybrid that running sport mode while the battery is above 55% does not charge the battery. it has yielded mid economy in the mid forties in my experience. Problem is you need to use manual gear shift or it will hold gears too long.

What do you do when you have either a long trip or lack the ability to charge for a period of time?

Thank you.
Good question and one that I have been experimenting with myself.

In my experience (5,000 miles in my Mini since January) I think if you are looking for economy on a journey, or maintaining battery charge for any length of time you have gotten the wrong car !

EV only range is poor, bordering on rubbish for a current generation PHEV and the fuel tank is as big as a thimble so with the gasoline engine being far from efficient, getting good economy on a journey of greater than 100 miles whilst trying to maintain any kind of battery life is really difficult.... the negatives aside my findings on driving modes vs. fuel use + electric use so far have been:

In MAX E Drive - you can get slightly better range out of the battery and the ICE in GREEN mode than in MID mode.

Don't expect more than 18 miles EV range in normal mixed urban driving with any kind of gradient ever and the difference between GREEN and MID has only ever been "around" 2 miles EV range in MAX E Drive despite any driving style changes I can do. I haven't had the vehicle long enough to understand how temperature affects things though, so maybe an extra mile by the summer may be possible ?

The same goes for EV only range in AUTO E Drive, but you must keep the speed below 55mph (ish) or the gasoline engine kicks in.... The gasoline kicks in at a higher vehicle speed in MAX E Drive

Don't run in SPORT, don't use the S function of the transmission and don't manually shift - all of these blunts total range (battery + ICE) by as much as 20 miles on my "standard" 300 mile there and back commute - I have tried all three variants from a full battery and in AUTO E Drive on my weekly 300 mile (in one day) commute and the 20 mile swing is "real" (or as real as I can standardise things based on trying to maintain my driving style, the same route, same time of day and speeds etc).

So far, the best vehicle setup for getting the best MPG I have found (on a brim-2-brim and cross referencing to the App and the MFD in the car) is to start with a full battery, then transmission in D, GREEN and AUTO E Drive and let the car do the rest. Electric consumption is difficult to monitor /measure for me as I only have the cars MFD to go on. I cheaped out on my home charger and cant yet differentiate household electric use vs. charging my car electric use, but I have been keeping a record or when I charge and what the battery SOC is at the start of the charging session (from the vehicles MFD) so if I ever get the time one day I might try and calculate my total electric consumption for the vehicle.

Running in SAVE mode gives horrendous ICE fuel economy at the time of driving, but does allow you to drive in Zero Emissions mode in the last couple of miles, so you can feel better about not polluting your own town as you drive home in the evening - but that is just "kicking the can down the road" as you are using more gasoline prior to that part of your journey to try and recover EV only range.

MAX E Drive with MID is great for journeys of under 12 miles if you want to drive "with spirit" (but don't ever go WOT as the gasoline engine kicks in !) or upto 16 miles if you drive like you have eggs under the throttle, but I cant find any journey to really stretch my battery range in this setup..... the ultimate is to find a route that starts and finishes at the same point, but is only ever down a 20% gradient, so you benefit from full regen on the overrun without the car grinding itself to a halt - so if you do find that piece of road, please let me know where it is :)

MAX E Drive with GREEN is the best use of EV only power (with eggs under the throttle) I have found and have managed a maximum of 18 miles once like that.

I have experimented also with capping my speed (never exceed 65mph in any mode and trying to stick to 60mph where the roads allow) and basically trying to drive everywhere on the overrun. Its boring but I have seen late 50's MPG on the brim-2-brim / vehicle MFD and App (all within 5% of each other) and using a full battery charge in the aforementioned AUTO E Drive + D + GREEN......

I think if you really try hard - on a long journey - you should be able to get down to as low as 34-35 MPG from the ICE and using your full battery, but from experience I think its down to the individual driver to tailor the MPG vs. Driving pleasure vs. Journey time trade offs.....

If you get a home charger (whilst the grants still exist) and try to persuade your employer to install a charger at your office, you should get reasonable MPG figures, but I don't think you will find a good compromise to get most battery and fuel use from this car.....
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Nice to see someone who is as obsessed by this as I am!

You are right about sport mode.
When the battery is below 50% it charges very aggressively. This can leave you with mpg in the low 30’s or worse.
When above 55% it stops charging so you effectively just use the ICE with electrical support. This leads to mid forties for me.

I do wish you could adjust auto edrive. I’d like a mode that uses the ICE more but still uses some battery power. AutoEdrive is basically battery only unless you accelerate hard or reach 55mph.
Why can’t I. Change that to 30% throttle and 30mph?

Save mode is economical when the battery is above 90% staying in the mid forties. When under 90% it is charging and yields about 37 mpg.

I have had some success with using autoEdrive for a 3 mile trip out then sport mode(manual) for the trip back.
No petrol usage on the way out but 32mpg on the way back and the battery at the close to the same percentage as the start of the trip.
 

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Meh, just drive the thing like you stole it and to hell with the fuel economy. Ours is part of my cunning plan which involves using it as a stepping stone to convince my wife to go full EV once it goes back to MINI in a few years time (working so far).
 

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Nice to see someone who is as obsessed by this as I am!

You are right about sport mode.
When the battery is below 50% it charges very aggressively. This can leave you with mpg in the low 30’s or worse.
When above 55% it stops charging so you effectively just use the ICE with electrical support. This leads to mid forties for me.

I do wish you could adjust auto edrive. I’d like a mode that uses the ICE more but still uses some battery power. AutoEdrive is basically battery only unless you accelerate hard or reach 55mph.
Why can’t I. Change that to 30% throttle and 30mph?

Save mode is economical when the battery is above 90% staying in the mid forties. When under 90% it is charging and yields about 37 mpg.

I have had some success with using autoEdrive for a 3 mile trip out then sport mode(manual) for the trip back.
No petrol usage on the way out but 32mpg on the way back and the battery at the close to the same percentage as the start of the trip.

I tend to just let the car "do its thing" for any short journeys (around 15-16 miles maximum which is basically all I do unless I'm going down to the office or out to see clients) - Which is a default of MAX E Drive and MID.

I quite like the relaxed driving style it gives and the "dull" throttle response is perfect for keeping up with all the traffic I find in town and on single A Roads. I don't think I could be bothered to try and "tailor" a mode myself ;)

Would certainly be interested in learning more of your experiences with eeking out the best fuel economy of the ICE (and getting the most total range on the battery). My mileage rate from my company is quite low (15ppm) but so far in the 3500+ business miles I have done in the car I have averaged close to 52mpg, so i'm quite happy.

That "nearly 52mpg" does include starting every business trip on a full tank of electric - so slightly masking the ICE figures. I only ever charge on my E7 rate which is less than 10p/kW.h so around 65p for a charge.

I think I'm 'winning' on the business miles vs. cost stakes, but I do long for the heady days of 75mpg+ and a range of over 800 miles from my old Diesel...... All I seem to be doing these days is working out when I need to leave home so I can visit the local petrol station and if I can get a "splash-and-dash" via ZapMap.... !
 

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Meh, just drive the thing like you stole it and to hell with the fuel economy. Ours is part of my cunning plan which involves using it as a stepping stone to convince my wife to go full EV once it goes back to MINI in a few years time (working so far).
With a fuel tank the size of a thimble and 2x AAA batteries under the back seat, if I "drive it like I stole it" - I wouldn't get home ! If the best EV range you can hope to achieve in the next 5 years is only 450 miles with a 4hr + recharge time then god help us all....... I don't want to have to get a second car just to use for work

Saying that, I do like the occasional blast in the All4.....

Its party trick of 0 - 100km/h in 6.5 seconds is mighty impressive for a 21st century £30K hatchback. It surprises everyone at the traffic lights when the little black "mummy wagon" leaves them in a wake of unburnt hydrocarbons and excess coulombs !

NB. I do this sort of hooliganary at weekends when i'm not on company business ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Just did a 25 mile round trip.

On the way out:
Auto E drive
Battery 55% down to 19%
134mpg

On the way back
Sport mode, selecting high gears.
Battery 19% rising to 45% by journey end
29.7mpg

Average:
10% battery usage per 25 miles
81.85mpg

Seems too good to be true...
 

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The key to life is in the question...
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Just did a 25 mile round trip.

On the way out:
Auto E drive
Battery 55% down to 19%
134mpg

On the way back
Sport mode, selecting high gears.
Battery 19% rising to 45% by journey end
29.7mpg

Average:
10% battery usage per 25 miles
81.85mpg

Seems too good to be true...

And as a very wise man once said - "If something seems too good to be true, then it probably IS too good to be true"

I'll be honest with you, getting 82mpg for the 25 mile round trip is quite good going.... the 30mpg for the 12.5 mile return portion sounds worse than when I ran my 24V V6 Alfa 164 back in the day though !!

Did you "modify" your driving style ? ie. Did you drive it like you would have done your last ICE engine car or did you drive it like you were trying to save fuel / electric ??

I can totally see how people get carried away with the "I got over 350mpg !!! Woohooo" agenda, but its just not real.... My last company VW averaged 68mpg for the whole of its life with me (45,000 miles) - that included the weekends and short runs as well as the autoroute cruises... and that was an Auto ! It had a consistent range of over 800 miles per "charge" and i once managed to squeeze over 80mpg out of it on a 400 mile (painful !) round-trip journey. My Mini couldn't do a 400 mile journey (unless it was all downhill !)

The Mini would be the ideal car if your daily commute was no longer than about 16 miles and you could charge at work ! As most people drive over an hour to get to work these days the poor old Mini is not the solution.... :( It looks good though and I like the way it drives..... its not all bad !!
 

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The key to life is in the question...
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Just did a 25 mile round trip.

On the way out:
Auto E drive
Battery 55% down to 19%
134mpg

On the way back
Sport mode, selecting high gears.
Battery 19% rising to 45% by journey end
29.7mpg

Average:
10% battery usage per 25 miles
81.85mpg

Seems too good to be true...

My drive yesterday - Cross country from Bedfordshire to Chepstow and back 238 miles total

Out
Auto E Drive - GREEN
Started on 100% battery SOC
Ended on 6% battery SOC
52.5mpg (indicated on cars MFD) or 51.6mpg (on the Mini Connected App)

Back
Auto E Drive - GREEN
Took a 4.82kW charge in Gloucester on the way home (free !!! But had to pay £2.30 for the parking - got to have a delightful lunch though and a look around the Catherdral ! Stunning)
Ended journey on 5% battery SOC
50.2mpg (indicated on cars MFD) or 47.9mpg (on the Mini Connected App)

Average
51.35mpg fuel use
I "filled up" the battery with 7.4kW overnight to start the journey and the freebie 4.82kW in Gloucester
If I assume gasoline at £1.179 / litre and electric at my E7 rate of 10p/kWH thats a total cost for the journey of £26.06
My old VW company car (that averaged 68mpg forever and more if I drove it like Miss Daisy) would have cost £19.55 at £1.229 / litre for Diesel at the 68mpg rate

Haven't got a full year yet to understand the BIK benefit yet vs. running cost deficit, but on a pure outlay per month on fuel and electricity basis, the Mini isn't doing too well at the moment..... Thank god I fee sanctimonious when I drive in Zero Emissions mode !

I did experiment with switching between MID and GREEN yesterday on any significant downhill stretch to try and gain the maximum energy harvest from the regen, but as its not a regular journey its impossible to quantify the benefit vs. trade-off of that kind of overly conscious driving....
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I’ve been trying this car without charging.
I kept the car on save mode but switched to EV for traffic, 20mph roads and the occasional very short trip.
I did 40mpg on the first tank and 42mpg for the second. Not bad considering four charges per tank yields 44-45 mpg in my experience. (Brim to brim) Not really worth charging..

I will probably try my alternating auto Edrive/ Sport mode next.

One thing I have realised is that the mini connected app fuel consumption has no basis in reality!
 

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I’ve been trying this car without charging.
I kept the car on save mode but switched to EV for traffic, 20mph roads and the occasional very short trip.
I did 40mpg on the first tank and 42mpg for the second. Not bad considering four charges per tank yields 44-45 mpg in my experience. (Brim to brim) Not really worth charging..

I will probably try my alternating auto Edrive/ Sport mode next.

One thing I have realised is that the mini connected app fuel consumption has no basis in reality!

I have been logging Brim-2-Brim as well and have seen as low as 42mpg between fills and as high as 84mpg ! So I think this is about "normal" - based on a sample size of just us two ! - I think I am averaging (Brim-2-Brim figures) just over 50mpg since getting the car in January.

Driving it like you have stole it (any mode) kills the MPG and drains the battery like it they both have holes in them and driving in SPORT just makes the steering feel awful so I avoid it.... I hope your MPG experiment doesn't yield good figures as I hate driving it in SPORT mode.......

I'm realizing that whatever mode combination I chose, its pretty rubbish on fuel AND electric - so I just need to make the most of it where I can and put my saved BIK monies into a pot to pay for my astronomical monthly electricity bill from OVO :(

Like all cars the 'range to empty' & 'average fuel consumption' data are calculated from the injector pulse count and the fuel line pressure - so basically 100% accurate on the test bench and 100% utter twaddle on the road ! I find it amusing to see what random numbers I can generate between the car and the App... so far my colleagues have been amazed at my 305mpg drive from home to the airport car park !
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Ok I’ve abandoned my alternating sport and auto E drive technique. The save / Auto E drive is better. Under 50% sport mode is very aggressive in charging the battery and therefore inefficient.

However, using sport mode while the battery is above 55% is quite efficient so I might try:

Sport mode / auto E drive until 55% then auto E drive until exhausted.

Or I might just keep using save mode with occasional auto E drive use. Certainly stress free always having 90% battery available all the time.
 

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Interesting to hear and thanks for sharing !

My current (probably over the past month or so..) "default" mode for the car is....

Auto E Drive + GREEN - This seems the best compromise for fuel / electric consumption for my driving style & routes etc. I then flick it into MID if the road is a bit "undulating" or to avoid constantly braking when I am behind slower moving traffic (I use the MID 'overrun recharge' feature like the retarder on a bus !).

Fast approaching 10,000 miles on the odo now, so everything is nicely bedding in, but still the B-2-B fuel cons average is hovering around the 50mpg mark since new.

I have a new regular route (50% Motorway : 50% cross country) to a customer site AND they have installed destination charging, so I think I might see an uplift in fuel cons figures soon.

I will start to create some templates / graphs for an "end of year report" when I have time off in the summer - small things and all that ! Oh god, I think I really am "getting obsessed with that bl**dy car !!" as my wife pointed out recently :(
 
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