Fuelly is a good source of data, vis a vis CVT vs 5 Speed Highway mpg's, but only if you look at the individual vehicles that are getting the best mileage.
The problem using their dataset as a talking point is:
1) They base their overall reporting on Combined mpg's, not differentiated City or Highway mpg's
2) Lots of data, but it is all self-reported mpg's, and the drivers assessment of City/Hwy is self-assessed, not always reported, and not shown unless you look at the data for each individual car
3) Transmission type is only identified if the owner decides to put it in the title of the car, Fuelly does not break out the data by transmission, and many owners don't tell you what they are driving (though fuelly allows you to enter Hatch/Sedan, or three distinct engine types for our car that has only one engine type).
So you end up with Stevenhnm saying "5speeds and CVT get the same mpg's on fuelly".
If you actually look at the individual cars showing the highest reported mpg's, in the cases where the transmission IS identified, they are almost all CVT's.
Why might that be?
My theory is the Combined MPG's for CVT's is about the same as that for 5speeds because a higher percent of CVT miles driven are CITY miles, which drop the overall combined average.
This is based upon the "theory" that many drivers in urban driving environments buy automatics over standards, because bumper to bumper driving with a standard is not appealing to most of them. If you have visited many cities, or live in one, you can verify the veracity of this theory.
If you really care to check this information for yourself, go to Fuelly and find some of the Impreza's that show both a CVT transmission and low reported combined mpg's, and click on them to see if the owner is reporting the type of driving.
I did this for a few, and the Imprezas reporting some of the worst mileage are due to almost all CITY driving (no kidding...who would have thunk it?)
Of course Stevenhnm has already told us that is BS, because if 'he' lived in the City, of course he would choose a standard transmission over an automatic for that type of driving!
And don't you know that most 5speed owners are "enthusiasts" who drive their car like, racecar! (this is his other theory...)
So those are all competing theories. Ignore them, and look at Fuelly and the reports here on the forum that show the highest MPG's.
Which transmission has the reported highest HWY mpg's? CVT's, consistent with the EPA testing.
Now since stevenhnm and the GTIwannabe (who I have on ignore, but he is an obsessed stalker) don't have a 5 speed, and are obviously not "enthusiasts" (based upon their own criteria of not commenting on something they do not own), they should not pipe in again with lame theories about how us "enthusiasts" theoretically drive our awesome 5speeds!
Assuming the EPA staffer who looks over their complaints has at least a high school diploma (Snowden has shown this is not a given) it should not take long to poke holes in the mpg complaints (and those theories behind the complaints that are being sold as "facts").
Or maybe the EPA will simply duplicate the mpg testing to see if Subaru failed to perform the testing as mandated. My hunch is the few complaints that have been filed will not cause the EPA to retest the car, but anything is possible. However, I am confident that if the EPA retests the car, the numbers will come out the same.
Stevenhnm believes in math, science, and physics (one might think), but probably prefers they look at his spreedsheets instead of retesting the car...