Which Cars Provide the Best MPG?
Although fuel prices are substantially lower than they were last year, efficiency is still one of the most important factors for many motorists deciding which new car they should buy.
There are several benefits of buying a fuel efficient car. You’ll spend less to travel from one point to another, reduce your dependence on oil and lower your level of contribution to climate change and environmental damage.
Shopping for a fuel efficient car used to be a fairly boring process, with the market dominated by simple economy cars. Luckily, there’s a good selection of efficiency-focused cars available in all sizes and configurations today.
Are you in the market for a fuel efficient car? We've put together a list of the most efficient petrol-based cars. Read on to learn which cars offer the best MPG and the cheapest, cleanest possible motoring for you and your family.
Fuel Efficient Small Cars:
Small cars are renowned for their fuel efficiency, and the four vehicles listed below are the best of the bunch. One of the cars listed below – the Citroen C3 – clocks in a fantastic 83 miles per gallon in optimal conditions.
Mini Cooper D
With a manufacturer specified fuel mileage of 80.7mpg, the Mini Cooper D is one of the most fuel efficient compact cars available. The three-door Cooper D is the most fuel efficient of the lot, using a small diesel engine to limit fuel consumption.
The five-door Cooper D isn't quite as fuel efficient as its smaller counterpart, but it still achieves an impressive fuel mileage. With a 78.5mpg manufacturer specified fuel mileage, it’s no slouch when it comes to efficiency.
The Citroen C3 is an extremely simple super-mini car that offers little in the way of comfort. Aside from the simple interior and serious lack of space, however, it’s one of the most efficient cars available today.
The 1.4 e-HDi 70 Airdream model offers the best fuel efficiency of the lot, with an impressive 83mpg manufacturer specified mileage. Tests by Whatcar put its true fuel mileage at about 70.3 miles per gallon, which is still miles ahead of the pack.
The Citroen DS3 offers similar fuel efficiency to the C3 in a much more comfortable package. The 1.6 litre e-HDi 115 Airdream model achieves a manufacturer specified fuel mileage of 74.4 miles per gallon in optimal conditions.With a larger interior and more powerful engine than the C3, the DS3 is an efficient option that’s better suited to motorway driving than its smaller, more efficient and less expensive counterpart.
With a manufacturer specified fuel mileage figure of 85.6 miles per gallon, the Seat Leon 1.6 TDI 110 Ecomotive is one of the most fuel efficient small cars available on the market today.
Like most cars built for optimal efficiency, the Leon loses some points in suboptimal conditions. Still, an average fuel mileage of 63.2mpg – as revealed in Whatcar tests – is still fantastic.
Drove home from Dublin within the speed limit and got over 60 mpg in my 11 yr old SEAT Leon. 65.5 mpg through most of Laois. 1.9 turbodiesel— Tom Doorley (@tomdoorley) October 15, 2013
Fuel Efficient Mid-Size Cars:
Over the last few years, fuel efficiency has spread from compact cars into a range of mid-size family vehicles. The three cars listed below offer fantastic combinations of practicality, comfort and efficiency.
Honda Accord Hybrid
One of the world’s best selling cars for decades, the Honda Accord is now available with a hybrid engine that achieves incredible fuel efficiency. The 2015 Accord gets an astonishing 47 miles per gallon – a great figure for a spacious mid-sized sedan.
Volkswagen Passat TDI
The Volkswagen Passat offers four doors, a comfortable interior with lots of space, reasonably good performance and fuel efficiency that’s impressive for a mid-sized car, achieving a combined fuel efficiency of 69 miles per gallon.
According to Autocar, the Passat lives up to its fuel efficiency claims in reality, with an incredible 58mpg average fuel consumption on a motorway drive from London to Sheffield.
I-ELOOP, Mazda’s strangely named fuel efficiency system, is available on the top-of-the-line Mazda 6 GT Technology. The four-door sedan achieves a great 40 miles per gallon on the motorway, putting it far ahead of similar mid-sized cars.
The i-ELOOP system reduces fuel consumption by using braking friction to generate electricity, which flows to the car’s stereo, air conditioning system and other power hungry components.
Fuel Efficient Luxury Cars:
Although most people don’t associate luxury cars with fuel efficiency, manufacturers like Lexus and Mercedes-Benz have taken significant steps over the past decades to reduce the amount of petrol their high-end models use.
Lexus GS Hybrid
With a V6 engine supported by two electric motors, the Lexus GS Hybrid combines performance with fuel efficiency. According to the US EPA, the GS Hybrid only uses 34 miles per gallon in motorway conditions – not bad for such a large car.
Some of the features used to improve fuel efficiency in the GS Hybrid include brakes that regenerate energy to power the car’s electric motors and a 0.27 drag coefficient, which reduces fuel consumption and improves performance.
The gold standard of executive cars, the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is now available as a fuel efficient hybrid. The Mercedes-Benz E-Class E300 BlueTEC recorded 67.2 miles per gallon in Top Gear testing, putting it ahead of many compact cars.
Add a comfortable interior, great entertainment system and surprisingly powerful performance – the E300 Hybrid can reach 150 miles per hour – and you get a large executive car that can perform well without the typical thirst for fuel.
Comfortable and spacious, the Lexus ES is a stylish luxury car that’s outsold many of its competitors in for years in the United States. The new hybrid version also offers a level of fuel efficiency that matches many smaller cars.
With a 2.5 litre petrol engine and electric motor, the ES 300h generates around 200 horsepower. It also achieves a combined fuel efficiency rating of 40 miles per gallon, putting it on par with many mid-sized hybrids.
Are you in the market for a fuel efficient car?
Whether you’re shopping for a compact city car or a luxury car for motorway trips, the wide range of fuel efficient vehicles available today mean that you’ll be able to limit your fuel consumption, no matter what type of vehicle you’re shopping for.
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