Home Travel Stories Gas Logs 1979 MG Midget 91-1 bbl MPG= 23.6 City
1979 MG Midget 91-1 bbl MPG= 23.6 City PDF Print E-mail
Written by Double Dragon
Tuesday, 03 July 2012 14:51

1979 MG Midget 91-1 bbl MPG= 23.6 City


Writing copyright D. S. Brown, photography courtesy and copyright A. Phan.


Metric= 1.5 L engine- 10 L/100km City.


MPG of MG Midget when new= 22 City/ 34 Hwy

The EPA sticker for the 1979 Midget claims 22 City and 33 Hwy. The California only version of the Midget amazingly got an extra MPG on the highway and matched the City figures. This is unusual because the California bound MGs were subject to more stringent emissions regulations. The tiny 91 cubic inch California engine is saddled with an air pump which usually cuts power and efficiency even on larger engines.

These figures translate to 19 City and 31 Hwy using the revised EPA system in force today. The Midget has a 1.5 L engine with a single barrel carburetor and drives through a four speed manual with direct 1:1 final drive. Pretty impressive numbers for a carbureted car choking to death under emissions additions.

The EPA guide book previously provided a CITY estimate, a HWY estimate and a COMBINED estimate. The January 22, 1979 edition of the guide provides only one number: 'Estimated MPG'. This is similar to the CITY Estimate used in 1978 and most closely relates to real life drivers. The 'Estimated MPG' mimicks errand running and work driving in mild stop and go conditions in urban and suburban areas without gridlock. The EPA used a broken in car on level surface in warm weather and rated the 1979 Midget at "22 MPG Estimated" which is identical to the figure used as the 'City' miles figure on the EPA sticker.

The MG forums real life users are getting about 30 to 35 MPG in normal driving with their Midgets.


MPG of OOCC MG Midget= 23.6 City

The OOCC Midget was driven in Southern California enjoying warm weather but poor gasoline quality. The reformulated blends used in California have reduced energy per gallon and hinder efficiency. Over the course of 561 miles it took about 23.72 gallons to keep the fuel around the same level which equals 23.6 MPG which beats the EPA rating.

The OOCC Midget was driven with the top up most days which actually enhances MPG because of improved wind flow. The Midget wasn't driven on any of the labyrinth of freeways in Southern California. All the driving was stop and go with stretches of cruising due to the long distances between intersections on the major roads down there. Average trip length was about 10 to 25 miles, so the MG always got its engine up to peak operating temperatures. The tires were kept at 32 PSI.

The table below shows that individual figures for MPG vary wildly because the tank readings aren't taken from one full reading to the next. It's doubtful that the car gets 5 MPG or 42 MPG but the midpoint of the two numbers at 23 MPG is realistic and also lines up fairly closely to the overall average for 561 miles of driving.

Looking at the overall distance and amount added will smooth out any jagged graph, but bear in mind the final MPG figure is an approximation at best. If the tank was completely filled a few times in a row the resulting figures would divulge exact MPG measures.

DATE         Odometer Cost  Gallons  Cost/ gal   MPG (uncorrected)

Aug 28/2012 42,499 $10.00  2.49   $4.01   20.8 MPG
Aug 26/2012  42,447 $20.00  4.92  $4.05   24.3 MPG
Aug 5/2012   42,327 $20.00  5.26   $3.79   18.8 MPG 
Jul 19/2012   42,228 $20.00  5.23   $3.80    25.0 MPG  
Jul 1/2012    42,097  $10.00  2.68   $3.71    5 MPG appx
Jun 26/2012  42,084  $10.00  2.66   $3.75    25.9 MPG appx
Jun 19/2012  42,015  $10.00  2.56   $3.99    6.2 MPG appx
Jun 12/2012  41,999  $10.00  2.27   $4.39    42.7 MPG appx
Jun 6/2012    41,902  $15.00  3.65   $4.09    20 MPG appx
May 26/2012  41,829  $12.00  2.84   $4.21    30.8 MPG appx 
May 11/2012  41,733  $20.00  4.6     $4.33   31.5 MPG appx 
Apr 23/2012  41,588  $10.00  2.46   $4.05    21.1 MPG appx
Apr 20/2012  41,536  $20.00  4.91   $4.06

Last Updated ( Monday, 23 May 2016 12:57 )