Hypermiling with a Jeep Compass/Patriot - Tips?
There's a movement of sorts called "hypermiling," which is basically driving using certain tips, techniques, and philosophies to get the most MPG out of your vehicle. Many of the tips seem fairly obvious, and include things like accelerating slowly, taking your foot off the accelerator the moment you see a traffic light go to yellow or red in front of you, avoiding the use of the heater or air conditioner until your vehicle's engine has warmed up, and so on.
With gas prices what they are, who wouldn't want to get some better mileage if it just meant modifying some driving habits?
Here's the weird thing: I tried implementing some of the techniques for about a week, and my mileage actually dropped by around 1-2 MPG compared to my normal driving. Specifically, I'd accelerate very slowly (although even before, I always accelerated slower than most drivers), and when taking hills, I wouldn't go beyond 2,100 RPM even if it meant that I was starting to crawl to around 25 MPH. Normally, I'll accelerate to maintain speed such that the engine will rev up to 2,600-2,900 RPM while climbing those hills.
Gramps has remarked before that the engine "learns" from your driving style and makes some adjustments accordingly, so my guess is that it's possible that what it has previously been trained to may be interfering with my efforts. On the other hand, I'm also wondering if the conventional hypermiling advice applies to cars with a standard transmission, instead of a CVT like we have with the Compasses and Patriots.
Gramps also remarked that the CVT engages in engine braking, which I've witnessed quite a bit. I find myself unintentionally decelerating even on some fairly steep hills much of the time.
Does anyone have any Compass- or Patriot-specific tips for increasing fuel efficiency based on driving style? And does anyone know how to better manipulate when engine braking occurs?