Most motorists like to spend as little time as possible idling at the gas station. Purchasing a small, compact car with good fuel efficiency is one way to avoid visiting gas stations frequently.
This isn’t a universally applicable answer; some individuals still require and value the versatility of sport utility vehicles. The need to transport children to football practice and school, take the pets to the vet occasionally, and make weekly excursions to Costco.
Although very practical, minivans don’t generally have the same flair as SUVs, and sedans are normally more fuel-efficient but still can’t match an SUV’s dominating perspective on the road.
Many drivers believe that they must forgo fuel economy if they want the room and power of an SUV. This isn’t always the case since certain SUV models provide fuel efficiency comparable to that of a regular vehicle.
We developed a list of used SUVs with the best gas mileage using the most recent EPA data while keeping the basic sticker price and the value-for-money aspect in mind. Here goes:
Starting MSRP: $23,785
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 49 MPG (City – 51 MPG / Highway – 46 MPG)
The Kia Niro hybrid SUV debuted in the 2017 model year. Given that it was built from the ground up to be a hybrid, the Niro’s biggest feature might be that it doesn’t seem like one. Nonetheless, it serves as both a compact SUV and a Prius hunter.
With a city fuel efficiency of up to 52 mpg, the Niro is worth considering. However, superb gas mileage is just the edge of the iceberg. With the rear seatback folded down, the Niro’s 54.5 cubic feet cargo capacity is plenty for even the most luggage-heavy journey. The cabin is noticeable for its high-quality materials, and the attractive dashboard would not appear out of place in a vehicle costing thousands of dollars more.
The Niro’s sole powertrain is a 1.6-litre hybrid setup mated to a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. The 139-horsepower hybrid engine delivers greater performance than expected.
Although speed is not Niro’s strong suit, it is as fast as or faster than some competitors. The Niro easily handles rough terrain, providing a smooth, steady ride.
Starting MSRP: $28,945
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 40 MPG (City – 41 MPG / Highway – 38 MPG)
Toyota made a huge effort with the revised 2019 RAV4 compact SUV, giving it a more robust style, a better-appointed cabin with premium materials, and a more advanced ride-and-handling mix.
And, with the 2019 Rav4 plug-in hybrid, Toyota combines decades of hybrid-powertrain supremacy with its best-selling SUV.
It includes a 2.5-litre inline-four along with electric assistance, which powers the front wheels; the total system output is 219 hp.
The hybrid RAV4 has the same functional and roomy cabin as the standard model, as well as low-cost value trims and high-end near-luxury models—though the hybrid technology does add a price premium.
However, compared to a gasoline-powered all-wheel-drive RAV4, the hybrid variant has fuel economy ratings. The EPA estimates it will get 40 mpg combined, with 41 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the highway.
Starting MSRP: $28,065
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 34 MPG (City – 33 MPG / Highway – 35 MPG)
The 2018 Nissan Rogue Hybrid earns a respectable place in the list of used SUVs with best gas mileage for its superb style, comfort, functionality, and exceptional fuel efficiency.
A 2L four-cylinder gas engine, an onboard electric motor, and an automatic transmission power the 2018 Rogue Plug-in Hybrid. Driving a Rogue is like going to see your grandparents: it may be a little boring, but at least it’s comfortable.
You receive a record-breaking combined EPA estimate of 34 mpg in exchange for the performance sacrifice. Even with all-wheel drive, the combined fuel economy is still 33 mpg.
Customers also receive a spacious interior with lots of cargo storage, a plush cabin finished in premium materials, and an optional third-row seating in addition to the vehicle’s excellent fuel economy.
The hybrid is only available in the Rogue’s higher trim levels, SV and SL. Still, luxury is standing there, with smartphone connectivity, heated front seats, a power liftgate, and a suite of driver assistance systems.
Starting MSRP: $24,575
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 32 MPG (City – 28 MPG / Highway – 39 MPG)
The 2018 Equinox, Chevrolet’s compact crossover, was updated in 2018 as a slightly smaller but more sophisticated version of its predecessor.
The Equinox does favourably in its class because of its high projected dependability and fuel efficiency. No other car can compete with Equinox’s 1.6L turbo diesel engine, which earns nearly 40 mpg on the interstate.
A 252 horsepower 2.0-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder engine is also available for performance enthusiasts, albeit it sacrifices some fuel economy.
Aside from fuel efficiency, utility is a significant aspect – the 2018 Equinox is one of the roomiest vehicles in the class. The Equinox emerges as a formidable long-distance family mover when combined with comfortable, cushy seats and a plethora of creature amenities. Not to forget the above-average fuel efficiency, high anticipated reliability, and outstanding safety ratings.
Starting MSRP: $39,720
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 32 MPG (City – 34 MPG / Highway – 30 MPG)
The Lexus NX Hybrid, introduced as a new model in 2015, combines the finery of a compact luxury SUV with the efficiency you’d expect from the most efficient economy automobiles.
The NX range comes standard with a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, but the NX300h is the lineup’s only plug-in hybrid and comes standard with all-wheel drive. The 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine collaborates with two electric motors to provide a combined fuel economy of roughly 32 mpg.
The hybrid powertrain in the NX300h impresses with its smoothness and economy. Its compact dimensions make it ideal for slipping into narrow parking spaces or jumping into small gaps in traffic.
The interior pampers passengers with comfortable seats and attractive style. However, the NX’s movements don’t match its outrageous design, but comfort and usefulness are your main priorities.
Starting MSRP: $19,960
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 31 MPG (City – 29 MPG / Highway – 35 MPG)
SUV buyers who aren’t ready to give up the thrill of the open road should book a test drive in the Mazda CX-3.
The CX-3 is the subcompact crossover of choice for driving aficionados because of its energetic engine, dynamic handling, well-controlled body roll, and excellent suspension calibration that rides the delicate line between stiff and too stiff.
A 146-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine lurks behind the CX-3’s broad nose. Despite not having the most powerful engine in this class, the Mazda feels rather lively on the road. The engine sounds abrasive, especially at high speeds, but its rev-happy temperament lends it a raciness that its competitors lack.
The Mazda CX-3 adheres to the Mazda brand’s sporty spirit and is unquestionably the most athletic option in this class. If there’s a drawback, it’s that the Mazda’s small size restricts the amount of baggage volume and second-row passenger room.
Starting MSRP: $19,215
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 31 MPG (City – 28 MPG / Highway – 34 MPG)
Honda released the HR-V as a 2016 model. It is the company’s smallest crossover and shares many mechanical components with the Fit hatchback. If you can get beyond its annoying infotainment system and lackluster driving characteristics, you’ll get a small SUV that diligently gets people and things from point A to point B.
The creative second-row Magic Seat provides the HR-V with an advantage in the cargo room, and it’s one of the most fuel-efficient vehicles on the market.
The HR-V is powered by a 141-horsepower 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine mated to either a six-speed manual or a CVT. Front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive available as an option. As previously said, the HR-V fulfills its functions with minimum fuss, but also with little driver satisfaction.
While fuel economy is fantastic, pounding on the accelerator produces more engine noise than forward motion. The HR-V thrives when you enjoy its agility, keen handling, and utility at a slower speed.
Starting MSRP: $25,995
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 30 MPG (City – 29 MPG / Highway – 32 MPG)
Due to its practical design and EPA ratings of 29 mpg city and 33 mpg highway, the 2014 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid is one of the greatest used SUVs with best gas mileage. The brand’s first hybrid vehicle, the XV Crosstrek Hybrid, has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and an electric motor that together produce 160 horsepower.
Even while the XV Crosstrek Hybrid’s fuel economy isn’t noticeably better than that of the standard gas-powered model, it is nevertheless a useful addition to the Subaru portfolio. And who can complain when the package includes Subie’s outstanding all-wheel-drive technology (particularly when you consider that the majority of the competitors are rated with front-wheel drive)?
Starting MSRP: $25,020
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 30 MPG (City – 28 MPG / Highway – 34 MPG)
The all-new 2017 CR-V, which has been completely redesigned and reengineered, is like that one kid at school who excels at everything. It’s fuel-efficient, looks appealing, has a spacious and upscale cabin packed with technology, and at the same time, it offers a comfortable yet engaging driving experience.
Honda performed its due diligence before installing its first turbocharged engine in a CR-V and coupling it with one of the greatest continuously variable automatic gearboxes (CVTs) on the market. The combined gas mileage for the 190 horsepower, 1.5L turbo engine with standard FWD and automatic gearbox is assessed at 30 mpg by the EPA.
Starting MSRP: $19,170
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 29 MPG (City – 27 MPG / Highway – 31 MPG)
The Juke is a quirky little SUV that is ideal for people looking for a fuel-efficient, quick, and eye-catching little runabout.
That’s true given the Nissan Juke’s alien-like appearance and engaging driving characteristics, which give the impression that this subcompact SUV secretly yearns to be a little sports car.
Furthermore, Nissan’s sporty and elegant Juke is among the used SUVs with best gas mileage.
It is powered by a 188-hp 1.6-liter engine with front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive is available as an option.
The Juke has enough oomph to weave through city traffic or spend hours on the highway. The 2014 Juke can achieve a fuel efficiency of 27 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.
Starting MSRP: $21,995
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 28 MPG (City – 25 MPG / Highway – 33 MPG)
The 2020 Chevy Trax is a no-nonsense subcompact crossover vehicle. While not the most athletic vehicle to drive, this small SUV has a lot going for it.
For starters, the Trax outperforms the class in terms of fuel efficiency. The front-wheel-drive variant gets 26 mpg in town and up to 33 mpg on the interstate, according to the EPA.
The Trax features a short wheelbase, making it easy to park and maneuver through traffic. Meanwhile, its interior looks to be greater than its dimensions would suggest. The Trax’s front passenger seat and second row all fold flat, letting lengthy things fit within.
Numerous compartments allow for efficient storage of everyday carry items, increasing usefulness.
It comes with a plethora of amenities as standard. It also gets good ratings for expected dependability and safety, and its available AWD offers it a capability boost.
Starting MSRP: $24,200
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 28 MPG (City – 25 MPG / Highway – 33 MPG)
In 2013, Buick introduced the Encore subcompact crossover-sport-utility, positioning the semi-premium brand of GM at the head of a new market.
The Encore is built on the same chassis as the Chevy Trax and has a decent cabin with many standard features and extra features that make it a respectable little, premium vehicle.
The 2013 Buick Encore has a 1.4-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine under the hood that generates 138 horsepower, which is sufficient for the vehicle’s requirements. In exchange, the Encore receives EPA ratings of 25 mpg in stop-and-go traffic and 33 mpg on the interstate. The Encore rides well and doesn’t get rattled when the road ahead is lumpy and uneven, despite having a small wheelbase.
The 2013 Encore is a wonderful option for family travel because of its high safety ratings and upmarket finishes. Used car shoppers who are drawn to the Encore because of its fuel efficiency will also be delighted.
Starting MSRP: $23,470
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 28 MPG (City – 26 MPG / Highway – 32 MPG)
For 2017, the Forester received a considerable makeover. While the current market comprises tallish, suburban family haulers that aren’t meant to see much dirt, the Forester comes standard with all-wheel drive and has best-in-class 8.7-inch ground clearance, making it a little more of an off-roader than others.
The 2017 Subaru Forester is also good at practically everything that crossover SUV buyers care about, including fuel efficiency, passenger space, a comfortable ride, and handling.
The Forester has two engine options, but the standard 170-hp 2.5-liter engine, available with either a manual or CVT transmission, provides the best fuel economy. Performance is, however, still underwhelming.
The Forester offers a smooth ride over uneven pavement and washboard roads thanks to its supple suspension. Effective wind and noise suppression are achieved through soundproofing using underfloor insulation, an acoustic windshield, and robust door seals.
Starting MSRP: $25,020
EPA-Estimated Fuel Economy: 27 MPG (City – 24 MPG / Highway – 31 MPG)
The 2017 Mazda CX-5 is a significantly updated version of the previous generation vehicle. Aside from the stunning new sheet metal and dramatically revised interior, it sits on the same chassis and is powered by the same Mazda 2.5-liter inline-four.
Inside and out, the dynamic CX-5 crossover blends unsurpassed driving excitement with rich-looking flair. A six-speed automatic gearbox sends 187 horsepower from a fuel-efficient inline-four to the front wheels. All-wheel drive is available as an option. With front-wheel drive, it achieves 27 mpg combined. The fuel efficiency lowers to 26 mpg with all-wheel drive.
Despite not being the most practical or feature-rich compact crossover, the CX-5 demonstrates how much fun a little SUV can be to drive. Its accurate steering and outstanding chassis deliver mechanical refinement and driving pleasure normally reserved for more expensive vehicles. Overall, the CX-5 seems and feels like a premium option at an affordable price, not to mention the great gas efficiency.
A fuel-efficient SUV may be the all-arounder you’re looking for in terms of passenger capacity, load capability, and pocketbook piece of mind. So there you have it: the list of used SUVs with best gas mileage based on EPA-estimated combined fuel efficiency.
Combined fuel efficiency because it is the weighted average of city and highway numbers – two very different driving circumstances. However, also keep in mind that these are simply estimations!
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