The holidays are quickly approaching and with them, families like mine will take to the road to visit familia and friends. With Halloween, just a couple of weeks away and Thanksgiving on its heels things get really busy around here. All of a sudden there is an endless string of events to attend, from trunk-or-treating at the park to the neighborhood holiday cookie exchange. This all means that our family will be spending lots of time in the car and on the road and the last thing we want to do is spend lots of money on gas. Here are our best tips for saving on gas as the holiday season approaches.
Get a car that achieves great fuel economy. Fuel economy and a family car with lots of trunk space usually don’t go together, especially if you’re looking for a crossover. That is what makes the 2017 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SE the perfect option: a crossover with lots of cargo space and seats that fold almost completely down and the fuel economy and low emissions that come with a hybrid! We had the opportunity to test drive the 2017 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SE recently and were impressed with the fuel efficiency. It’s the first time we drive a hybrid and because my dad drives a RAV4 we were able to compare the hybrid and the regular RAV4 and saw a big difference when it comes to fuel economy. There are not many good choices if you want a hybrid crossover and what we loved about the 2017 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SE is that the significant difference in mileage and fuel economy are really worth paying a bit more than the regular RAV4.
Watch how you drive. When you are driving on the highway try to stay as close to 55 mph as you safely can, driving slower can boost mileage by 5 percent. Avoid stopping and starting; accelerating from a standstill requires extra fuel. When traffic and road conditions are ideal for it take advantage of cruise control; automatic fuel use is much more efficient than trying to maintain a constant speed on your own.
Use the GPS to cut down on mileage. Use your GPS to find the shortest route to your destination. Sometimes I get used to driving on certain streets and highways because I am more familiar with them but using a GPS even to reach destinations you know how to get to can help you find shorter more efficient routes and save you on gas.
Take into consideration the cold weather. Although we live in Florida and don’t have to worry about cold weather this year we are planning on driving north to see family. Many people, especially those who usually enjoy warmer weather like we do, don’t realize that cold temperatures can decrease your fuel economy. To reduce the effects of the cold on your fuel economy by combining not using the heaters and defrosters more than necessary, parking somewhere warm like a garage so you don’t have to warm up your car when you get back in, making sure the tires’ air pressure is where it needs to be and not using heaters and defrosters more than necessary.
Take advantage of technology. If there is one thing we learned from our recent ordeal having to evacuate due to hurricane Irma was to use gas apps. Gas apps like Gas Buddy are not just great for finding gas stations with fuel during fuel shortages but also tell you where gas prices are better. Apps like FuelFrog allow you to track your mileage and provide information about gas prices in your city and about your car’s fuel efficiency over time.
What We Liked About The 2017 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SE
Getting to test drive the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SE for a week really gave us an opportunity to “get to know” the car and this is the things we really liked about it.
A hybrid worth the price. I have been wanting to buy a hybrid for a while now: not only can a hybrid save you money on gas but it also lets you do your part for the environment reducing fuel emissions. However many hybrids are still not worth the bump in price. In the case of the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid SE we felt that the significantly higher fuel efficiency really makes it worth the investment.
A reliable brand. We are already familiar with the RAV4 and love Toyotas, my dad has a RAV4 and one of our cars is a Corolla and from experience, we know that Toyotas are very reliable. It seems that we are not alone: according to Consumer Report Toyota is ranked as the no.1 most reliable car brand! Because we have never owned a hybrid we would be more comfortable buying a hybrid from a brand we know and trust.
Lots of safety features. The RAV 4 Hybrid SE includes a forward collision warning system, lane departure warning and intervention, automatic high-beam control, adaptive cruise control and features blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert.
A fun and comfortable ride. The RAV4 Hybrid SE is faster than the regular RAV4 which I was not expecting. I really enjoyed the sunroof, which I can really use now that the temperatures and humidity in Florida are getting better. I thought it was a very nice and easy drive and the car felt secure when making turns, even in rainy Florida weather which is the real test.
The car feels refined and I really like the upholstery of the SE; it’s faux-leather so it looks great and stands up to the wear and tear that comes with having kids and dogs in the car all the time without the price tag of real leather. The SE also includes heated front seats which may come in handy if we’re driving up north during the holidays and LED exterior lighting. I really enjoyed the sound system included with the SE: an 11-speaker Entune Premium JBL Audio package which is ideal for those long road trips with the family!
Overall we loved the RAV4 Hybrid SE because it’s a fun crossover with lots of space, it seats five and has a very spacious trunk, combined with great fuel economy that can only come from a hybrid. You can get more information about the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid and the different options on the Toyota website HERE. LikeFollow Toyota on Facebook to keep up with their latest news and follow @Toyota on Twitter and @ToyotaUSA on Instagram for driving inspiration.
Have you considered buying a hybrid?