Big Boss

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Just got back from granger to the Chicago suburbs. About 350 miles, averaged 18.5mpg. Speeds between 65 and 75 most of the way, with a few miles around 80.

Wind noise picks up a bit after 50, but could easily carry a conversation with the wife. Didn't seem to get really bad till above 80. Also made a few calls and they said on their end it was a little loud when causing at 70 but was able to have a conversation no problem.


BB,2.3 4 door soft top.

 
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andrusoid

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Hi All,

Over the holiday weekend I took my family on a road trip from San Diego to Phoenix, total was around 1000 miles consiting of lots of varied condtions (open highway, city, rain, up to 4200ft altitude). We were fully loaded with four people, two dogs, and a family's worth of food, lugage, and Christmas gifts. I'll keep my hot-takes brief so nobody gets bored readng this, but here are a few notible observations (Note - I have a 2.3L/AT 4dr Big Bend, MIC Top, 4.27 rear w/locker, stock except for 285/70R17 Kenda Klever AT2 tires):

1) The near vertical front window is an absolute bug magnet. Plan on lots of cleaning. Bring extra wiper fluid on long trips.

2) Not sure if it's the size/angle of the front window but the windshield wipers seem largley cosmetic in heavy rain. Is RainX still a thing? Does it work?

3) Power to climb/pass/etc. on the highway in the 2.3L/AT is not an issue. Even fully loaded.

4) The wind-noise at highway speed is pretty bad, lots of noise/whistles/etc. from the MIC top for anything over 65 mph. But highway handing is perfect, and road noise was actualy minimal despite running LT all-terrain e-load tires.

5) Here is the big lesson learned though - on the highway wit this set-up, in 10th gear the RPMs sit around 2300 when crusing in the 75-80 mph range. And almost always using at least 2-5 psi boost. It's nice to be in the meat of the powerband, but man it SUCKS for fuel economy. Crusing at 80 on the highway I was lucky to get 18mpg, and often dipped into the 17mpg range. Overal for the trip I averaged about 18mpg. There is a HUGE diference going from 65 to 75-80mph, that jump cost me 2-3mpg.

Since I'll surely spend more time on the highway than off-road with a locked differential, I am wondering if the upgrade to the e-locker was a mistake. However, I also think that 10th gear is a bit short and it was likely optimized for the standard gearing.

All-in-all, it was a great travel partner. Everyone was comfortable and space was adequate.

Oh, and the number of Bronco's seen on the entire trip other than mine? Only one.

Cheers!
4,900 mile trip answers.

1) True. Lucky to find a gas station with the proper bug detergent in Arkansas.

2) Rain-x is awesome. Just don't let a drop randomly hit your windshield, it will be obviously superclear forever.

3) Regretted not getting the 2.7 until drove the 2.3. Power'a'plenty indeed.

4) Noisy does not quite say enough. Fortunately I am mostly deaf from riding with my windows open and too much loud punk rock back in the day.

5) All I can say is, running premium? Got me close to 4-6 add'l MPG. ECO is also a thing on the freeway. MPG may vary based on head-wind, driving up hill, etc.

6) The day you need the e-locker wll answer your question. It is not affecting you when it is unlocked.
 

22OBX

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Thanks for the write up. Wonder when there'll be a bug deflector in the mix...
Hood Protector - Ford (VM2DZ-16C900-B)
 

BroncocnorB

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To your point, 850 miles from Chicago -> NYC with an average speed of 82mph…

84F0CF61-03FC-4333-A834-F249702C8C60.jpeg


2.7 Sasquatch, regular fuel

Tried premium w/ Eco mode in the other direction, got 14.8 mpg. Go figure
Damn
 

WhoaNelly

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.........
stock except for 285/70R17 Kenda Klever AT2 tires):
............
How do the wider tires fit on the stock wheels? I'm assuming no rubbing? Any concerns for when the tired need to be aired down?
 

Broncodave

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Good thing I live in Seattle. Average speed 25 mph.
 

Addict

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The locker shouldn't affect fuel economy when not locked...are you saying that you are running 75-80mph on the highway with the rear locked?
THIS is exactly how I read it as well. If thats the case thats crazy lol. I assume they mean that the e-locker came with the 4.27 gears? Although I could be mistaken.
 

Turbo NY

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@mC.242

Just saying I’m pretty sure I followed you in phx… I tried to catch up but I think you pulled north on 7th ave
 

nminus1

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For the 25 years I have been driving I cared greatly about gas mileage. Obsessed over it. And initially I did in the Bronco, kept the fuel economy on my digital dash was looking at all the time.

... And then about 300 miles after ownership I decided I wasn't going to care anymore and just went with "Calm Screen". And I'm all the happier for it because now I just enjoy the Bronco.
Spending 60k on your iconic dream vehicle and worrying about 2 MPG just seems insane to me. I think you are right on target.
 
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mC.242

mC.242

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@mC.242

Just saying I’m pretty sure I followed you in phx… I tried to catch up but I think you pulled north on 7th ave
Yep! Was heading to the veteran's cemetery to visit my dad 👍
 
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mC.242

mC.242

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How do the wider tires fit on the stock wheels? I'm assuming no rubbing? Any concerns for when the tired need to be aired down?
Plenty of room for them, no rubbing at all.
 
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mC.242

mC.242

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Spending 60k on your iconic dream vehicle and worrying about 2 MPG just seems insane to me. I think you are right on target.
Well, it was closer to 40k and I'm trying...but yeah not the vehicle to sweat a few mpg.
 

Limecreek

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Hydrogen peroxide in a spray bottle will make quick work of the bug collection.
 
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RubyRedGT

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17-18 mpg is phenomenal in this type of large heavy vehicle, especially going 80 mph.
 

LarryZiegler

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Not the locker, it's the shorter 4.27 gearing that comes with it.
The low gearing is not nearly impacted these days due to the .636 ratio of 10th gear. I’m running at 2,000 RPM at 70 mph and getting 21-22 mpg with 4.27’s and the stock 32in tires on OBX trim. I just got past the 1,000 mi break in period, so I’ll see how the mileage is closer to 75mph.

 

 
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