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I am debating between a V6 and 4 Limited RAV4. I am leaning toward the V6 because of the towing capacity, but I have seen different views on whether the V6 takes premium or regular fuel. Would like to hear from those wo have the V6. Are you using premium or regular? Have you tried both and seen any difference in gas mileage, power, pinging? What does the owner's manual say?
 

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quote from the California Energy Center..

REGULAR VERSUS PREMIUM GASOLINE
Regular Gasoline Has As Much Merit As Premium Gasoline

"Put a tiger in your tank," says a classic advertising tagline. In today's motoring world, what kind of fuel grade will have the power to place a beast in your gas tank?

The answer, according to experts who study fuel efficiency in detail, is both regular and premium gasoline. And it would be a waste of money to favor premium over regular, especially in these times when gasoline prices are high, according to the experts.

Virtually nothing is gained by filling up with a premium or more expensive grade of fuel than the vehicle manufacturer has recommended, the experts say. And many of the same experts explain that drivers may not lose much performance from their cars by using a lower grade of fuel than recommended by the car manufacturer.

There is little difference in energy content of regular versus premium gasoline. They both contain about 111,400 British Thermal Units of energy per gallon.

The price difference, however, between the fuel grades is anywhere from 20 cents to 40 cents, depending on where you live in the United States. The experts' consensus goes against the long-held belief by thousand of drivers who fill up with premium only, or on every third or fourth trip to the pump. The idea is to fill up with premium every so often to clean out the engines or rev up the performance of older engines.

But according to the experts, this practice is like tossing quarters in a wishing well, since most engines are designed to operate on relatively low-octane regular unleaded gasoline.

Octane is defined as a fuel's resistance to knocking. There is no benefit if the octane is higher than what the engine needs. Engine knock occurs when fuel in a combustion chamber ignites before it should. This disrupts the engine's operation. But electronic knock sensors are now common and have nearly eliminated engine disruption.

The American Petroleum Institute says if you find that your car runs fine on a lower grade, there is no sense switching to premium. The Institute recommends following manufacturer's recommendation, but even those manufacturers say that it is more of a suggestion than a command.
Link to California Energy Center
 
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Discussion Starter #9
rav4's V6 requires regular, so it needs regular only.... no need for premium.

it is only when engines require premium that you will get misfires, pinging, etc, when you use premium.

So regular is reccomended by toyota and thats all you need.
 

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spwolfx said:
it is only when engines require premium that you will get misfires, pinging, etc, when you use premium.
Oops.. :oops: I think you meant

"it is only when engines require premium that you will get misfires, pinging, etc, when you use REGULAR. :wall

However as the California Energy Center states most cars today have electronic knock sensors that compensate for lower octane gas. You will notice a loss of power if you use 87 octane in a car that has a engine built to use 91 octane
 

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V6 Sport 4x4
odo: 1000

First two tanks of 93 , 21 and 20 mpg.
Last two tanks of 87, 18.5 mpg.

No Idea why, thats just what I got. Im sticking to 87 for a while, then I'll try 93 again for the hell of it and see what happens. I noticed no performance difference between the two.
 

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Stick with what the owner's manual recommands as far as octane. Most high octane cars can shorten ignition timing if it detects knocks and pings due to a lower octane gas. A car that is design to run on 87 octane will not lengthen ignition timing to take advantage of the premium gas.
 

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summerwind said:
However as the California Energy Center states most cars today have electronic knock sensors that compensate for lower octane gas. You will notice a loss of power if you use 87 octane in a car that has a engine built to use 91 octane
Not only power, but also mileages. So, if the car (not RAV4) requires premium and someone would like to save $$. Check to see what are the mpg for regular and premium, and how many mileages will be used for a year and see if there is any saving...
 

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ic said:
summerwind said:
However as the California Energy Center states most cars today have electronic knock sensors that compensate for lower octane gas. You will notice a loss of power if you use 87 octane in a car that has a engine built to use 91 octane
Not only power, but also mileages. So, if the car (not RAV4) requires premium and someone would like to save $$. Check to see what are the mpg for regular and premium, and how many mileages will be used for a year and see if there is any saving...
Good catch..

My Audi A4 V6 will tolerate 87 octane but power goes down and as you said MPG decreases as well.
 

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I know this discussion has been batted around several times already but........
Unless you have an engine that is designed to run on premium octane, it's the driveability index that's gonna determine how well your engine runs, and what kind of mileage you get, not octane rating.

OC
 

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OK OK I guess I was the only one using premium for a while. Eveybodys right here premium does nothing to enhance power or performance. You can take it from me, no knock, no ping, no better pick up and go. I was just hopeing just maybe. Who cares bout the bucks anyway. :wall
 

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Inlets 'ol buddy - haven't heard from you in awhile. Even if your V6 was knockin' and pingin' to beat the band you'd never hear it with your JBL cranked up to level 50 with Jimi Hendrix beating up his guitar!! :lol:

When you gonna get an album, I wanna see that "Silver Bullet"!!

OC
 
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Discussion Starter #19
We just got home from a 1400 mile trip and averaged about 29 miles per gallon with a V6 on regular, also I must mention that this car had only 300 miles on it when we left so it now has 1700 miles. It really is saving us money over our Fored Explorer gas hog that used to get 19 miles to a gallon highway with premium and in the end only got about 15 miles.
 
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