Do you buy premium gasoline? I don't. - Mercedes GLE Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-15-2017, 06:24 PM Thread Starter
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Do you buy premium gasoline? I don't.

I figured this topic would get people talking:

Do you put premium fuel in your GLE as instructed? I don’t. I mentioned this to a coworker the other day and she nearly had a heart attack. She told her boyfriend (who also drives a Benz) what I said and he almost had a heart attack too. She put me in touch with him and he launched into a dissertation pointedly telling me that what I was doing was akin to blaspheme. I told him the GLE (and virtually all cars) runs fine on regular fuel and premium is not necessary. He strongly disagreed and told me he would NEVER fill his tank with regular fuel. I told him that is his choice but I felt otherwise.

He said I would damage the engine! Potentially void the warranty! And perhaps disrupt the space-time continuum by using regular fuel! I let him have his say and then I pointed out that the kind of driving I do does not require premium fuel. I drive to work, to home, to the gym, etc. I am not a race car driver, I do not drag race, and I do not need to extract the absolute maximum performance from my car. If I did, maybe I would buy premium fuel . . . but I would also have premium brakes installed and premium racing tires as well. I don’t have those because that is not the kind of driving I do. I have had this debate with a number of car guys over the years. Some swear higher end cars MUST have premium fuel. I do not believe they do. Two cars ago I had a BMW; premium fuel was required, but I never bought it. My last car was an Audi; again premium fuel was required but I always filled it with regular. Both cars ran fine for all the years I owned them. In fact, I still feel guilty for letting go of the Audi because it ran perfectly at 73,000 miles when I decided to get something new.

My argument is this: gasoline is basically the same product. It has to be otherwise it would not work in all the many different engines we use it for: different makes and models of cars from manufacturers all over the world, go carts, lawn mowers, portable generators, boats, etc, from many different manufacturers. And remember, all of these products can use gas from FL, to ME, to WA, to CA. Gasoline purchased from all over the country will work in any gas powered engine because (say it with me): it is the same product. If there were big differences in gasoline different gas could not work in all these different products from so many different manufacturers.

I’m not saying there is zero different between gasoline grades. I am merely saying that the difference is not sufficient enough to warrant buying premium gas for any newer car. There ARE cars from the 60s and 70s where you can hear and feel a noticeable difference in the engine between premium and regular fuel but that difference is negligible in modern cars.

I know many of you will think I am crazy or foolish for buying regular gas, but ask yourself this. What seems more likely 1) your car literally needs premium full to function properly or 2) the “idea” of premium fuel is a con perpetrated by car makers and big oil to extract more money from gullible consumers.

I explained all this to a friend of mine who once swore by premium gasoline. I told him to do an experiment: turn off the radio and really listen to your car when you drive it… its engine… performance… handling… with premium fuel. Then for your next two fill ups use regular. And again, really pay attention to the car. If you really notice a difference that is important to you then stick with premium. If not, forget it and go to regular. He did this test and he never buys premium any more! Mind you this is a bud who used to SWEAR on the value of premium gasoline. I have not seen him in a couple years but we stay in touch via text. The other day I sent him a selfie of me filling up my car with regular at a gas station. We still laugh about it. He said I made a believer out of him and he has not wasted money on premium fuel in years.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-16-2017, 07:21 AM Thread Starter
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Are you familiar with the Smart fortwo subcompact car? It is a two seater and not a performance car by any measure... yet it "requires" premium fuel! Why would this car--that is essentially a glorified go cart require premium fuel?
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2017, 11:32 AM
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While some cars require premium gas, many others simply carry a recommendation to use it. But the Mercedes GLE owner's manual says premium fuel of 91 AKI/95 RON is a must...A bit conflicted now that you've brought this up.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2017, 12:08 PM
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Your engine is equipped with a knock sensor designed to detect pre-ignition (detonation, combustion knock, ping) and send information to the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) which is designed to correct for the problem by adjusting the ignition timing and fuel consumption to prevent the engine from being destroyed. Interestingly, less octane is required when driving at high altitudes as there is less oxygen in the air. From calculations I've done in the past there is no savings going to regular because the spread in prices is not so great as to make up for the increased use of fuel to compensate for decreased engine performance.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-18-2017, 03:52 PM
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Anyone living in the City shouldn't worry too much about the type of gas because they have options to get around and that's what I seen the GLE demographic being. But even the broader GLE demographic shouldn't worry, if you have to worry about gas with the GLE... maybe it isn't for you.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 08:45 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Benzinator View Post
While some cars require premium gas, many others simply carry a recommendation to use it. But the Mercedes GLE owner's manual says premium fuel of 91 AKI/95 RON is a must...A bit conflicted now that you've brought this up.
“Required” or what? The car won’t run? The engine will be damaged? The warranty will be voided? I’ll cause a black hole? As I said previously, I have had this debate with a few car guys over the years. Back when I had my BMW one of my interlocutors swore I was doing irreparable damage to my car’s engine by not filling it with premium fuel. He threw a bunch of technical information at me about the car’s engine to justify premium gasoline. I freely admit that I am not an engineer and I did not have the background to challenge his technical arguments tit for tat. But I do have experience and common sense. No one is going to convince me that I “damaged” the engine of a vehicle that I owned two cars ago because I didn’t use premium fuel. I drove that car for years without incident and in those days I did occasionally “drag race” and otherwise test the limits of the car’s engine. I once drove it at 132mph going from San Francisco to Los Angeles--all on regular fuel.

My Audi ran fine on regular fuel… and so does my GLE 43 AMG. Yes, my AMG runs on regular fuel—not premium! Maybe Karl Benz is rolling over in his grave, but I will never fill this car with premium fuel.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 08:50 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Benzinator View Post
While some cars require premium gas, many others simply carry a recommendation to use it. But the Mercedes GLE owner's manual says premium fuel of 91 AKI/95 RON is a must...A bit conflicted now that you've brought this up.
“Required” or what? The car won’t run? The engine will be damaged? The warranty will be voided? I’ll cause a black hole? As I said previously, I have had this debate with a few car guys over the years. Back when I had my BMW one of my interlocutors swore I was doing irreparable damage to my car’s engine by not filling it with premium fuel. He threw a bunch of technical information at me about the car’s engine to justify premium gasoline. I freely admit that I am not an engineer and I did not have the background to challenge his technical arguments tit for tat. But I do have experience and common sense. No one is going to convince me that I “damaged” the engine of a vehicle that I owned two cars ago because I didn’t use premium fuel. I drove that car for years without incident and in those days I did occasionally “drag race” and otherwise test the limits of the car’s engine. I once drove it at 132mph going from San Francisco to Los Angeles--all on regular fuel.

My Audi ran fine on regular fuel… and so does my GLE 43 AMG. Yes, my AMG runs on regular fuel—not premium! Maybe Karl Benz is rolling over in his grave, but I will never fill this car with premium fuel.

What precisely are you conflicted about?
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-19-2017, 08:52 AM Thread Starter
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-15-2017, 11:35 AM
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I've always assumed that engines were designed to run on a certain level of octane, and won't consistently putting regular fuel, when the owner's manual says otherwise, nullify your warranty?
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 09-20-2017, 04:34 AM
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I've never used premium fuel not because of cost but because its the same thing I totally agree with you and I've never had Merc pull me up for it and I've been driving there cars for 20 years all models shapes and sizes and they have all been serviced fully by Mercedes so they might recommend it but there not checking your doing it I pick up me new Gle tomorrow I'll ask the tech so I can look at his bewildered Eh! face
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