Anonymous asked in Cars & TransportationMaintenance & Repairs · 9 years ago

how can i get better mileage from an old engine?

i have a 97 geo tracker, with a 1.6L 4cyl. i think it get somewhere around 16-22mpg (at least it did back in 97). how can i increase the fuel efficiency from this motor?

i was planning on doing a new intake combined with headers and a 2.25" exhaust to help it breath better and get a little more power. keep in mind that i do go off road with it frequently


i kinda consider this poor mileage considering my scion gets in the upper 20s and it has a 2.4L and puts out twice as much power. i know it is a newer vehicle, but there must be something that can help this 13 year old car.

2 Answers

  • 360ci
    Lv 4
    9 years ago
    Best Answer

    That's not bad mileage. If you don't need much in terms of performance, you can go with taller tires to reduce highway rpm, however larger tires add weight and raise the vehicle height so you may not see a mileage gain.

    If you used it primarily for highway use, you could install a taller axle gear to reduce highway rpms, however on hills you might notice more transmission/clutch slip to get moving from a stop.

    An intake and cold air intake can help performance, but it's not guaranteed to help with mileage.

    In your case, the best thing you can do is to run synthetic engine oil and axle fluids. It'll reduce friction and thus reduce drag on the power train and that can give you a slight mileage boost just in itself, and the cost is relatively low, especially if you can change the fluids yourself.

  • 9 years ago

    Don't waste money on headers and the like. Synthetic oil and proper tire inflation are the most effective ways to increase gas mileage.

    I only take my car off road when I fall asleep on the highway or speed in icy conditions.

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