Car Trip Speeds. Can you beat 64 mph avg for any trip?

Trip details - 10:10 minutes, 647 miles

AVG SPEED - 63.64 mph

I rented a car from AVIS JFK yesterday (cost 112.23 with 10% disc. and no young driver fee, thanks USAA). The price was almost the Fibonacci sequence, but the trip got me thinking about average speeds. It took me 10:10 to complete this trip from Manhattan to Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

It was a little Chevy Aveo (with only an AM/FM radio), with an even littler gas tank, so though it was getting right on 30 mpg, It only got 300 miles out of a tank-- two fuel stops hurt average speed.

Other Time wasters:

A traffic jam out of Manhattan across the GW bridge

I carried no cash and had to wait 5 minutes for a toll booth attendant to attend to me.

Food stops - 10 minutes at a sub place, 5 minutes at a Burger King, and 5 minutes waiting to have my order taken in a diner before I left indignantly (careful as I am about trip times).

The hitchhiker fiasco - On I-80, a hundred miles into PA, I scooped up a Native American alcoholic who had gotten out of jail (DUI) yesterday morning (I saw the release papers). The guards dropped him off at a hospital 50 miles from his house so he could get a belly operation, but he hitchhiked home instead. He could talk about nothing but how much he wanted to get drunk, and how I had a long way to go until Michigan (through the rest of Penn, Ohio, and Boston...). I had to play off his jail time like it was normal and cool, and planned what to do if he assaulted me. He had no seatbelt on and the passenger airbag was off, so I was going to crash the car into a solid barrier at exactly 30 mph. I'd be fine and he'd be wrecked. Any slower and he'd would be unhurt and furious. I drove him 40 miles, gave him a bottle of water (the sun was blazing) and let him out at the Rte 220 exit to Lock Haven, where he was headed.

And the good...

I covered the 147 mile stretch of the 65 mph Ohio Turnpike in 2:00 exactly, including a stop for gas and a trip to the bathroom. The little Aveo went fast well, carrying on at a fair clip whenever the road was clear.

I know the trip could be done sub-10 hours without much difficulty (if the Aveo had a CD player), but I was fairly hustling and am curious to hear about average speeds of other travellers.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

In the US with its attention to limits, the average speed (assuming interstates...) only depends on how much you are willing to flaunt the law - and keeping stops to a minimum (as you did). Averaging more than 60 on the average New England (i.e., winding) 2-lane takes a lot more skill and flaunting, but that's where the art and the ballet is to be found. Then add rain and call yourself Rosemeyer; now you are motoring.