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Old 03-30-2014, 09:41 PM   #1
ArmyApe
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Low RPM vs powerband for fuel economy

So, I'm not sure how to phrase this question without sounding like a complete n00b but, here goes:

I understand that bikes have an optimum performance RPM range and it's also fairly common knowledge that lower RPMs tend to equate to better fuel economy. My question is, which is actually better for gas mileage in the event that your powerband is on the higher end?

Side info: I tend to average 33mpg by keeping my RPM in the 5-7K range (Gen4 ZX10r). Higher gears, lower revs unless I need throttle control in heavier traffic.
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Old 03-30-2014, 09:55 PM   #2
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although which rpm range might make a slight difference, i think its more important on how quick you reach that rpm, if you reached 7k rpm in 2 seconds, vs 7k rpm in 10 seconds, i think you will use less fuel to get where u need to go, if you dont wide open throttle, or push the cylinders too hard
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Old 03-30-2014, 10:01 PM   #3
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Who cares about gas mileage on a zx10 b
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Old 03-30-2014, 10:13 PM   #4
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Who cares about gas mileage on a zx10 b
You want gas milage get a scooter..
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Old 03-31-2014, 12:49 AM   #5
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Who cares about gas mileage on a zx10 b
80 miles a day worth of commuting, figured I'd ask.
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Old 03-31-2014, 05:42 AM   #6
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You know your display shows both average fuel consumption and instant fuel consumption
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Old 03-31-2014, 08:08 AM   #7
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Stay out of the power. Drive like ms.daisy for best fuel mileage.Drive like the fuel light is on n you don't see a gas station but by doing so you should not be on zx10 n your man card will be removed lol
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Old 03-31-2014, 08:11 AM   #8
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Sounds to me like you're trying to equate two totally different things: economy, and power.

Best economy will always be achieved with the lowest throttle opening, and the lowest revs.

Best power will always be achieved at the high throttle opening with the highest revs necessarily using the MOST fuel.


The powerband just refers to the rpm range in which the combination of heads and cam fill the cylinder most efficiently. On a sportbike with 16,000 rpms worth of tach, no combo of parts is going to be able to flow optimally acorss the entire range.
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Old 03-31-2014, 09:25 AM   #9
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get a 250
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Old 03-31-2014, 09:28 AM   #10
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You can get infinity miles per gallon of gas with an electric vehicle
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Old 03-31-2014, 09:28 AM   #11
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Power and fuel economy are inversely proportional. The more throttle you twist the more fuel the bike drinks.
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:10 AM   #12
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This is a rather simple question with a complex answer...

One thing to consider is that wind resistance increases non-linearly with speed, meaning that the increase in resistance between 70 to 80 mph will be a lot greater than from 60 to 70 mph, generally. Theoretically at least, if you want better fuel economy, driver slower.

The other thing to consider is that any particular engine will have an "optimum" range for power vs. fuel consumption.

Because of my bike's gearing and tuning, for whatever reason I get better mpg at sustained highway speeds of 75-80 mph than from 65-70 mph. I don't believe that simply running lower rpm will net you greater fuel economy, you really just have to find that optimum range. I've had about 6,000 miles of interstate riding over the last couple of years to test out my bike under various conditions. It's going to be hard to get a good read on this if you're doing mixed city/hwy driving.

When commuting though, try and coast as much as you can, don't accelerate hard, keep tire air pressure where it's supposed to be, and look into some of the hyper-miler techniques. I haven't found the pulse-and-glide method to be greatly beneficial on my bike, but in my wife's TDI Jetta I can bump highway fuel economy (averaging 75 mph) from about 38 to 42mpg.
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:29 AM   #13
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For all the people that say get a scooter or 250 are just being dumb. He isn't asking how do I get 80mpg out of a zx10r. He just doesn't want to spend as much money getting too and from work. There is nothing wrong with getting the best efficiency as you can from a sport bike. Owning a scooter/250 and a zx10r would be more expensive then just riding his zx10r.

The lower rpm = better fuel economy is a myth. The lower load on the engine will get you better mpg's. If you are trying to go around the city at 30 mph in 6th gear and 2krpm you will be using a lot more fuel than being in 3rd or 4th at 4-5krpm. You just gotta experiment with your bike to find out what cruising speed it likes best.
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:44 AM   #14
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You just gotta experiment with your bike to find out what cruising speed it likes best.
Or just read the display that gives you instant fuel consumption
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:23 AM   #15
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For all the people that say get a scooter or 250 are just being dumb. He isn't asking how do I get 80mpg out of a zx10r. He just doesn't want to spend as much money getting too and from work. There is nothing wrong with getting the best efficiency as you can from a sport bike. Owning a scooter/250 and a zx10r would be more expensive then just riding his zx10r.

The lower rpm = better fuel economy is a myth. The lower load on the engine will get you better mpg's. If you are trying to go around the city at 30 mph in 6th gear and 2krpm you will be using a lot more fuel than being in 3rd or 4th at 4-5krpm. You just gotta experiment with your bike to find out what cruising speed it likes best.
Exactly. Not a bike but... My truck (cummins) gets better MPG at 78-80MPH that 70MPH because it's in the "sweet spot", fueling the same but with a tad more boost.

Had to figure that one out myself, don't have the instant MPG thing.
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:26 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArkansasDave View Post
For all the people that say get a scooter or 250 are just being dumb. He isn't asking how do I get 80mpg out of a zx10r. He just doesn't want to spend as much money getting too and from work. There is nothing wrong with getting the best efficiency as you can from a sport bike. Owning a scooter/250 and a zx10r would be more expensive then just riding his zx10r.

The lower rpm = better fuel economy is a myth. The lower load on the engine will get you better mpg's. If you are trying to go around the city at 30 mph in 6th gear and 2krpm you will be using a lot more fuel than being in 3rd or 4th at 4-5krpm. You just gotta experiment with your bike to find out what cruising speed it likes best.


Its been discussed here many times. In short, you cant. You'll come close, but your better off in a cage.
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:45 AM   #17
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Or just read the display that gives you instant fuel consumption
And trying different speeds while watching the dash isn't experimenting?
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:46 AM   #18
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And trying different speeds while watching the dash isn't experimenting?
I'd call it riding

Kind of like, "I'm going to experiment with the throttle and see if it affects the MPH or RPM"
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Old 03-31-2014, 01:12 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TardinLA View Post
Exactly. Not a bike but... My truck (cummins) gets better MPG at 78-80MPH that 70MPH because it's in the "sweet spot", fueling the same but with a tad more boost.

Had to figure that one out myself, don't have the instant MPG thing.
A turbodiesel is a whole different ballgame because it can (and in fact likes to) run lean. A gas motor goes boom in that scenario.
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Old 03-31-2014, 01:51 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chubby Racer View Post
A turbodiesel is a whole different ballgame because it can (and in fact likes to) run lean. A gas motor goes boom in that scenario.
Can you explain why my gas v-4 gets better economy at 4k rpm than 3200? I'm at a loss, unless it's just that the engine hits a "sweet spot" and is actually operating more efficiently. I know mine isn't an isolated case because one of the more popular mods for my bike is to swap over the shorter (numerically higher) rear drive gear from a vmax to raise freeway rpm at 65-70. People claim both better acceleration AND better fuel economy at interstate speeds.
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