Does you car deliver the level of fuel economy that you were promised? Does any? There’s been a good bit of controversy whether hybrid gas mileage is all its cracked up to be. A number of disgruntled hybrid owners have even gone so far as to sue Honda, disputing the official EPA estimates on the Honda Civic Hybrid.

If you look at a window sticker (and I look at a lot of them), you’ll see two fuel economy numbers in big bold print — one for city mileage and one for highway mileage. (Since I don’t have my trusty vintage type gauge handy, I’d have to guess that they’re printed in 48-point Bold, or thereabouts.)

Underneath those big numbers, you’ll see some fine print… only it’s not all that fine (I’d estimate it at 10- or 11-point or so, in mixed Roman and Bold). The not-so-fine print reads: “Expected range for most drivers X to Y MPG.”

Yes, my friends, it’s the age old weasel word proverb, “Your Mileage May Vary…”

Fuel efficiency, no matter the vehicle, is largely based on driving skill. There are no magic potions. It is up to the driver to make the most of the wizardry under the hood.

Drive efficiently, and you will be rewarded. Go forth thoughtlessly and in a rush, and you will pay the penalty (and the service station attendant).

I’ve had the good fortune to have driven many of the current crop of hybrid cars. They deliver as promised (when properly driven).

Resource: 2010 Hybrid Gas Mileage