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How to Stretch Your $4 Gal of Gas

 OK, my car gets 22 mpg on an average, that’s not too bad. It’s around 18 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway. I commute 40 miles roundtrip 5 days a week to work or 200 miles per week. At $4.00 per gallon for gas, it cost me…

200 miles/22 mpg = 9.09 gal per week

$4.00 per gal X 9.09 gal = $36.36 gas cost per week

My motorcycle (HD FXDWG Wide Glide) gets 44 mpg or twice the mileage of my car. It is twice as efficient as my car when it comes to gas consumption. So, using the same commute to work mileage,

200 miles/44 mpg = 4.55 gal per week

$4.00 per gal X 4.55 gal = $18.18 gas cost per week

Or 50% of the gas cost using my car

Monthly.

Car cost $36.36 per week X 4 weeks = $145.45 per mo.

MC cost $18.18 per week X 4 weeks = $72.72 per mo.

Annualized.

Car cost $145.45 per mo. X 12 mo. = $1725.46 per yr.

MC cost $72.72 per mo. X 12 mo. = $872.73 per yr.

This is a savings of $873 per year by using the motorcycle.

Your cost variables are different from mine.

My daily commute is 50% street and 50% highway, if yours is 100% highway, your gas mileage will increase approximately 20% or your annualized savings will increase from $873 to $1,074, or if there is no highway travel, it will decrease accordingly.

Your motorcycle may have higher or lower average mpg than mine.

I live in Sacramento CA and average about 20 rain days per year. You may live in a four-season area and may only be able to ride your bike 6 months out of the year.

Your car may have lower average mpg than mine, your motorcycle gas savings would go up.

Initial cost for both car and motorcycle and the subsequent depreciation must be considered for an actual cost comparison.

Insurance costs for the car do not go away unless the car goes away. My car is idle for 90% of the year but I am still paying insurance and license fees on it all year long. If I lived in a four season area, I could stop insurance on the motorcycle for 6 months per year. What is your circumstance?

Notice that I am only calculating my daily work commute. In the evenings and on the weekends, I use a mix of my motorcycle and my car. Weekly grocery shopping calls for the car, to handle all of the grocery bags. Running errands usually means the motorcycle. Unless you are living in a “motorcycle only world”, you still are going to have a car (and the related costs), sitting around the house.

Bottom Line

You can just skip this math if you like, and simply calculate that a motorcycle has a 50% savings in average mpg. Whatever you are paying for gas in your car today will be reduced by 50% if you were riding a motorcycle instead.

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