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Old 04-10-2005, 10:48 AM   #1
FocusFred
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Old Beetle to New ZX3?

Hi Everyone.

I'm new to the forum. Yesterday I went down to Whaling City Ford in New London, CT and ordered a new ZX3. They couldn't find the basic, simple car I wanted so I had to order it. This coming week the salesman will email me with the projected build date for the car.

I need a reliable, high gas mileage car to commute the 60 miles (one way) to work each day. I hope I chose correctly. I considered a diesel Golf but the initial cost of the car and the price of diesel made that option uneconomical.

I have three running vehieles now. The ZX3 will make four. I was commuting to work in a yellow, 1974 SuperBeetle but that great old car has 200,000 miles and is getting tired.

I'm using my white,1994, 6-cylinder, F-150 until the ZX3 comes in.

I ordered a yellow, ZX3 model S, maunal transmission with no air conditioning. The only option is ABS brakes. The color is for commuting visibility and the lack of air is for maximun gas mileage.

I'm hopeing to get above 30 MPG routinely.

The only future modification will be Koni shocks all around.

I admire the english tradition of having real wood in the dashboard of cars so I'm hopeing I can replace the plastic face plate around the radio with real wood. This project will probably tax my engineeing and woodworking skills to the limit.

Fred


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Old 04-10-2005, 10:57 AM   #2
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congrats on the new car..............I own a 75 Superbeetle and trying to convert it from fuel injection to carb as we speak
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Old 04-10-2005, 12:09 PM   #3
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Fred welcome to FF!

With the combination of ZX3 (IIRC, the lightest body style), no power options and manual tranny I think you can easily see 30 mpg with normal commuter driving. If it's mostly highway and you stay at reasonable speeds, I think it's possible for you to get high 30s.

Sounds like a nice collection of vehicles you have- SuperBeetle, Focus, F150... what's the fourth one?

And I think a wood dash would look interesting, good luck on that project!!
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Old 04-10-2005, 02:12 PM   #4
FocusFred
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rfinger

I'm sure you know this but I'll mention it anyway. The engine in a 1975 SuperBeetle lacks the mechanical fuel pump port because VW went to an electric fuel pump for the fuel injection. Generally, one puts a 74 or earlier engine in the FI cars to return to carburation. Are you doing that or using the electric fuel pump?

Lil PZEV

Thank you for those comments. You have really reassured me that I can achieve the gas mileage I desire.

My forth vehicle is a white, 1995 911 Porsche Carrera. It came from the factory with matching white rims with hand-painted Porsche crests in the center hubs. I don't consider this vehicle a car. It is Art in Motion. I saved for 10 years for this piece of Mechanical Art. It makes me high when I drive it. I consider it one of the beautiful Automobiles ever made.

Fred
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Old 04-10-2005, 02:20 PM   #5
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Fred, welcome first off.. I think you should call your dealer back and get the air conditioning!! The summers I am sure are hot, and 60 miles with the windows up would be unbearable. Some state patrols have done studies that show driving with the windows down gets you worse milage than using the air conditioning. Even with the air on you will get far better than 30mpg on the hiway. And comfort is worth something. I drive 30 miles one way to work, and would never have a vehicle without a/c now...
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Old 04-10-2005, 03:54 PM   #6
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Good points vanace, about the windows rolled down. But though I don't know exactly where Quaker Hill is, in CT there would really be less than a dozen days all year where it gets oppressively hot enough to consider the AC.

Most of the time, even in hot humid weather, I just put the "fan" on 0 and "color range" to Blue, then as you're driving the air just blows through the HVAC system as a function of physics, not using the motor or anything. That works for 99% of the summer driving I do.
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Old 04-10-2005, 04:06 PM   #7
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Do what Vance says before it's too late! There's a lot of glass on these cars, you're going to need that AC. Besides, cars today are aerodynamically intended to have the windows up. And if you drive this car with the windows down at speed, you'll be treated to an unpleasant rumbling that is actually physically uncomfortable and practically drowns out the radio. And when you realize what a mistake you made, your practically new car will have no resale value.

By the way, I was a VW fanatic when I was younger, having owned 5 of them over a span of 13 years. I had a chance to drive a new 2002 old beetle (I think that was in 2002) in Mexico and I was shocked! I used to LIKE these??? It's amazing how far cars have progerssed.
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Old 04-10-2005, 04:24 PM   #8
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FocusFred I think I like your fourth vehicle the best! Good choice. But like the others I'm a little perplexed at choosing to not have A/C, it has indeed been shown that you get better gas mileage with the A/C on and the windows closed than you do with the windows open and the A/C off. And like someone mentioned, the Focus makes an unpleasant "buffeting" effect with the windows down on the highway.

Then again I've never been to Connecticut, I have no idea what the weather is like. All I can think of is what it's like here, "Summer" lasts from, well... right about now, until October. July, August, and September would be unbearable without A/C, and I know because I've owned cars with no A/C!! Phew, HOT!

Anyway nice "transition" from one egg-shaped car to another, right down to keeping the color! The Focus makes an ideal commuter car.
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Old 04-10-2005, 04:29 PM   #9
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Wow 4th car, good call!!

My neighbor's got a Porsche like that, it could be the same one, not positive. It's a dark color though, it's his pride and joy too... license plate's "FUNCAR". It's beautiful
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Old 04-10-2005, 05:30 PM   #10
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that's what i did!!! i went from a 1964 Bug to my 2000 ZX3. and hope you like it!!
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