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I use top tier fuels only. With ethanol fuel blends there is no difference in performance or mileage between mid grade and high grade. I just use 87 octane (USA). I prefer to fill up with 87 - 89 octane pure fuel without added ethanol. Driving with full and consecutively filled tanks of pure fuel results in my Element idling smoother, better throttle response/power, and better mileage.
 

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I use 87 octane E10, no problems. Have occasionally run 90 octane E0, but the improved fuel efficiency doesn't make up for the extra cost. It feels a little bit smoother on E0, but that could be my imagination 馃榿. Around once a year I use fuel injector cleaner since I sometimes use non Top Tier fuel.

Octane ratings are figured differently in the US and Europe; I think 98 Eur is roughly equal to 93 US
 

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2009 SC MRP
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297 Posts
That's interesting.

Is your gasoline rated the same way as ours? Our pump numbers are calculated by: Research Octane + Motor Octane, divided by 2.
I checked again and there are differences in the octane rating between the US and Europe.


ROZ
(EU-Spec.)
MOZ (ROZ+MOZ)/2
(US-Spec.)
9182,5~87
958590
988893
 
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Switched to 93 octane in 2015 when i put my E into storage/limited use. It get a good run twice a month and i total about 500 miles a year now. The added cost of Premium is insignificant since i'm buying only 2 fill-ups an 2 cans of SeaFoam.
 

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2011 Honda Element EX AWD
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If you understand how the knock sensor works than maybe, just maybe a higher octane gas could give you a little boost. But that would only really be during hard accelerations, uphill climbs, hauling/tow heavy loads. Basically any situation that advances the engine timing. When the knock sensor detects preignition, the computer will retard the engine timing. Using a higher octane fuel may delay or eliminate preignition and thus keep that advanced timing during heavy loads. But for day to day driving, using anything more than 87 gas, total waste of money.

Now if you rebuild the engine and up the compression or turbo/supercharge the engine, all bets are off.
 

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I've only run 87 since the 2004 was new for 150k miles with no change in performance and always clean plugs at replacement time. Never any pinging under high acceleration when the car downshifts and revs up. I have noticed a slight improvement in acceleration if I use the ethenol-free gasoline available here at some stations, but it's not worth the significant price difference to me. I pretty consistently purchase the 87 at my local Sam's Club here in FL. ChrisFix has a good fuel selection and octane tutorial on YouTube and the European conversion that's worth a look.
 
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