Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - Hawesy1982
Ok, *this is not a speeding thread*!

I am looking for answers based upon my technical query (in fact if necessary please move this to the technical thread mods), not opinions on whether or not it is legal/morally right to do this!

I often find myself driving home from a night out in Reading, about 45miles from from my home town of Watford. It is usually the early hours of the morning, the motorway is deserted and as such i 'make progress' by sitting at about 95mph in my M Reg 1.6 Escort.

My question is this - am i damaging my car through doing this? The revs at this speed are around 4000 in 5th gear.

I am aware that my fuel consumption at this speed is ridiculous, but i am wondering about the long-term effects of driving at a constant speed at high revs for an extended length of time.
Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - Dynamic Dave
I wouldn't have called 4000rpm high revs.

I imagine your car red lines at just over 6,000rpm? Therefore you're operating your engine at only 66% of it's maximum permisible revs.
Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - paulb {P}
Father of a former girlfriend of mine had an L-reg Orion with this engine, and used to do exactly this once a week or so to give it a good clean-out (it got used for a lot of short trips). Now, he was a Ford mechanic of some 30 years' standing and worked for the local dealer, so I guess he knew what he was doing!
Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - robZilla
Ah, the old 'Italian tune-up' :)
Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - Hawesy1982
Well thats nice to know, at least!

Dave - I suppose your right, there isnt actually a redline drawn on the counter but it goes to 7k, i guess technically the redline would be about 6.5k then.

So these kind of sustained revs once a week or so don't cause any major wear/problems then?
Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - paulb {P}
Shouldn't do - AFAIK the Orion I mentioned ran pretty much faultlessly for six years until traded in. All the petrol-engined cars I've owned have run perfectly well at this sort of engine speed - I once had an old-shape 1.1-litre Punto which was doing nearly 4,000 rpm at only 70.

With regard to maximum RPM, might be worth checking the handbook, if you have it - I do remember that the one for the Orion said that the engine's maximum RPM was around 6,500 but that maximum continuous RPM should not exceed 6,200 or so. Can't unfortunately recall the exact figures.
Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - xam
Here in Germany 95mph is not an uncommon speed to the majority of drivers, and nobody complains about short engine life.

Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - Hawesy1982
Thanks for the replies everyone, seems that it is broadly accepted to not do any damage provided the car is well enough maintained (which it is)

Blue Oval - Being the same generation, I know exactly what you mean about driving around with 'inebriated' passengers at closing time, i've done it a fair few times and am yet to get breathalysed once!

HJ - Obviously i would expect anyone being pulled for speeding at 2-3am to have their breath tested, to be honest i'd be critical if they didn't, but rest assured my old policy of "one is ok" has in the last few months been replaced by "A pint of Coca-Cola please", due to my own decision that whilst one is probably legal, it's still more dangerous than none.
I must say tho, it is tempting when a pint of Coke comes in at over £2 in some pubs close to me!
Fast motorway driving - Good or bad? - daveb0789

In my Mondeo (98) both the rev counter and speedometer are inaccurate. The manual says 23.6 mph/1000 rpm giving 3000 rpm at 70 mph. At 70 mph on my GPS, the speedo registers 77 and the rev counter around 3250rpm. At an indicated 95 mph the rev counter shows 3750rpm. So 1) I bet you're not really doing 95 mph, and 2) I bet the rev counter is over-reading too. Nevertheless sustained high speed running particularly in older cars with higher mileages in my experiences causes them to run at higher temperatures which in turn burns oil so my advice is to check your oil levels regularly and if possible use a good quality one and get the car serviced often. I also think that at those higher speeds, the engine of an older car is far less efficient than a newer one so you will be burning a disproportionate amount of fuel


Value my car