When you’re planning on putting miles under your belt with a vehicle, having the most fuel-efficient car makes all the difference. Not only does fuel-efficiency help you save at the pump and put money back into your pocket, it also helps minimize your carbon footprint. Win-win!
Of course, when you are buying or even renting a vehicle, numerous factors play into your final decision. These factors include safety, price, size, utility and additional luxury features (such as heated seats and sunroofs). Once you nail down the price range you’ll be shopping in, you can then look to prioritize how fuel-efficient the car is.
Though nearly every vehicle manufacturer is moving toward creating more fuel-efficient cars, brands such as Toyota, are leading the charge, with Consumer Reports tagging four Toyota models to be included in their top ten most fuel-efficient cars in 2019.
When it comes to fuel-efficient cars, there isn’t a lot to choose from in the economy price range. Often, the model only becomes superbly fuel-efficient when you upgrade the system to a hybrid version of the car. Nonetheless, the Chevrolet Spark and Hyundai Sonata offer a lot of bang for your buck.
Starting at $13,400, this car is the most affordable you’ll see on this list. Thankfully, Chevrolet put a lot of design effort into this little vehicle to make it worth your consideration. Packed with plenty of technology for enjoyment and safety, the Chevrolet Spark also manages to scoot around the city at 30 mpg and 38 mpg on the highway.
The Hyundai Sonata averages a solid 29 mpg with the SE model, though the Eco model is able to squeeze a little more efficiency out of the system, getting an average of 38 miles mpg on the highway. The versatile car enters the market at a sub-$24,000 price tag. The hybrid model will cost you about $4,000 more but you’ll be able to enjoy up to 54 mpg on the highway.
This is where you’ll find the majority of your most fuel-efficient vehicles. These cars are designed for middle and upper-middle class folks who aren’t a fan of needlessly burning money every time they go to the grocery store.
The Toyota Prius hybrid puts gas guzzlers and even gas sippers to shame, as it can last up to 54 city miles and 50 highway miles per gallon. When traveling less than 25 mph, the car can run entirely on electric.
Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid
The Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid comes in four models varying in price range: Blue, SE, SEL and Limited. The Blue has a city and highway-combined EPA estimate of 59 mpg, which the company claims are industry-leading numbers.
The world’s most popular car is also one of the most fuel-efficient. The traditional gas-powered Corolla gets an impressive 30 city / 38 highway mpg. But the hybrid version, powered by two electric motors reaches a combined 52 mpg.
The Honda Insight puts out a combined EPA rated 52 mpg while still coming in at about $23,000. If you’re looking for a reliable, no frills, eco-friend car, this may be the one for you.
Tesla Model X
Luxury cars are built with things besides fuel-efficiency as a top priority, unless they’re an electric car, such as the Telsa Model X. Starting at nearly $80,000, it has a 371-mile range.
When Considering Fuel-Efficient Cars…
Though getting the most fuel-efficient car might not be your top priority when it comes to buying or renting a vehicle, it should be at the top of your list (assuming you’ve got safety covered). In some cases, such as with the Ford Fusion, you’ll be shelling out extra cash for the hybrid version of the car. But in the long run you’ll be laughing all the way to the bank.
Do you have any preferences among the most fuel-efficient cars listed? Tell us why in the comment section below!
AAA members can save even more money at the pump with Shell’s Fuel Rewards program. Learn more.
In the market for a new car? Learn about the AAA Auto Buying Program.
This post was originally published in 2018 and has been updated.
10 Thoughts on “The Most Fuel-Efficient Cars Worth Considering”
Having entered the hybrid market with a used 2006 Prius when it was 9 years old, I regularly was able to get 44-48 mpg for about 100K miles. We were lucky to scoop up a 2022 Prius AWD XLE as it arrived at a dealer in January. Since then we have averaged 56-70 MPG, with a slight drop to 56MPG with AC on. We do a mix of small-town driving and 200-mile round trips on the highway at 65. JH Redding,CT
My 2017 Ford Fusion Energi was up to 310+ mpg when I worked close to where I live. Now that I live 50 miles away (beyond battery range), I am getting around 50 mpg with all that highway driving, half of which is at 65 mph. I absolutely love the features. Too bad Ford doesn’t think real cars have a future.
I DID NOT LIKE MY HONDA. IT WAS THE NOISEST CAR MADE.
I’ve been a Corolla owner forever. My 1998 Corolla 5-speed got 38-40 mpg and lasted for 260K miles without ever leaving me stranded by the side of the road. My current 2014 model has 100K miles, gets 34 mpg on the highway and 29 around town, and has never been in the shop for anything other than brakes and oil changes.
Right now getting ~64 mpg with my 2019 Camry LE Hybrid around the small town where I live………….
I have been able to achieve close to 50 MPG with my 2017 Honda Civic driven conservatively on the highway in economy mode.
Wondering why the Honda Insight hybrid was omitted. It matches or exceeds mileage of many of the models included above and competitively priced.
The new 2019 redesigned Honda Insight is a great car. I have the Touring model and am getting 53 mpg highway and about 55 in town. It’s my first hybrid, and I’m learning how to drive it for maximum gas mileage without making the rest of the drivers around me unhappy. I’m getting better mileage than the car is rated for!
Prius wins hands down. I get 58+ mpg highway simply by driving steadily under 62 mph. City driving runs a little under highway for me, but I’m not the only one driving the car!
My 2016 Honda Fit averages close to 40 mpg without a Prius type battery. It shows what an all gas powered car can do.