Real-world MPG: our cars

  • True MPG data for our long-term test cars
  • Find out what we get to the gallon
  • Are we matching real-world potential?
Words ByEd Callow

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What Car? adds new models to its True MPG database every week, after they’re taken on a thorough road test by our experienced technicians. Our test routes and high-tech equipment means that we can bring you real-world MPG figures rather than data from a laboratory test.

This week we’re taking a look at some of the cars on our long-term test fleet. We’re a varied bunch of people, and drive each other's cars regularly, so we often compare notes on our long-termers’ fuel economy.

Official fuel economy for the Ford Focus ST is 39.2mpg, but our True MPG team recorded 32.6mpg along the test route. Group production editor Euan Doig runs our long-term Focus ST, and he’s achieved 25.6mpg between recent fill-ups.

That figure is 7.0mpg below our real-world indication, which reflects the fact that most of Euan's miles have been done in stop-start urban traffic of late.

Photographer Will Williams is responsible for our long-term Honda CR-V 2.2 diesel, which is fitted with a five-speed automatic gearbox. It achieved 40.0mpg in our True MPG tests, only 1.0mpg below the official figure of 41.0mpg.

Over recent miles, Will’s been managing an average of 37.3mpg in our CR-V, which is helped by his free-flowing motorway commute with a round-trip of more than 100 miles.

In previous True MPG tests, the Mini Paceman Cooper S returned 38.9mpg, down 7.4mpg on the official data. The Paceman is in the custody of consumer editor Emma Butcher, who’s beaten our real-world result over recent miles, with an impressive average of 40.2mpg.

For more information and updates on our long-term test fleet, visit

You can also visit to see the full range of cars we’ve fuel tested, and find out what you really can expect to get to the gallon on UK roads.