People always say bikes have unlimited miles to the gallon, but is this truly the case? Probably not.
Why? Because what powers a car is the energy the gasoline produces not the gas itself. This is interesting because a basic unit of energy is a joule (J) or calorie (kcal). In fact 1 kcal = approx. 1.184 J. However, we’ll stick to the most recognized unit of energy, a calorie.
According to convertunits the amount of calories in a gallon of gasoline is approx 31500 kcal/gallon of gas.
From my experience using a heart rate monitor, my efficiency goes up and down do to wind direction/speed, tires being pumped up 100%, and other factors. We will ignore all factors except for my weight 160lbs, and assume my average riding speed is 20mph on flats with no wind. For each pound at this speed I lose .25kcal/mile (general rule of thumb I’ve seen many places…here’s the livestrong analysis); therefore, I burn 40kcal/mile – This has been confirmed with my heart rate monitor.
(35100kcal/gallon) / (40kcal/mi) = 787.5mi/gallon = 787.5mpg
Therefore, if I was able to drink gasoline without dying I’d be able to ride 787.5 miles for every gallon I drink… I have yet to see a more efficient motor.
DO NOT DRINK GASOLINE – IT CAN KILL YOU
* These calculations are for entertainment purposes only. Enjoy!
Check out my running fuel economy here.