1998 Mercury Tracer • 4 cylinder FWD Automatic • 145,000 miles

I have a Mercury Tracer 98 that I recently bought with 145k on it. It drives awesome, occasionally the instrument lights inside on the meters goes off and comes back again in a half an hour or so. But what I am really concerened is that the gas mileage on it is around 17.3 per gallon. I have verified this number thrice. It has a service sticker on that which says "next service due at 148 K. Do you know why instead of a regular 25mpg it is giving me 17 in city?
I would appreciate. Thanks!
November 18, 2010.

Have you done a tune, and checked for a engine management fault with a scan as yet?

Mark (mhpautos)

Nov 19, 2010.
There are many possible reasonss for high fuel consumption.

1. Driving condition and habit. If vehicle is mostly driven in city traffic, fuel consumption would be higher. So would be a brisk driver who is heavy on the gas pedal.

2. Engine.
A). Mechanical. Any fault with engine mechanical would cause losses in engine performance and higher fuel consumption.
B). Tune-up. Some high fuel consumption problems can be rectified with a tune-up.
C). Transmission fault. If trans is slipping, it would be so.

As to the meter lights coming on and off, it couls be a loose connection somewhere.

Nov 19, 2010.