7 of the Nicest 35 MPG+ Cars of 2013

Posted on June 16, 2013 by
2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid – © Ford Motor Co

When most people start looking for a car today, they are thinking more about fuel economy instead of the giant SUV’s of the past. While sports utility vehicles are still popular for those with a lot of toys, with gas prices close to $4 per gallon in some states, the need to find a fuel efficient car is more evident than ever.

From the 2013 line up of cars, there are dozens of cars that boast at least 35 miles per gallon. While low fuel consumption is becoming an absolute necessity, as mentioned above, we tried to find 7 cars that still offer the whole package. Some of the key points we were looking for included comfort, attractive design, passenger and storage space, etc. While there is obviously no car that is perfect for everyone, you might discover one that is perfect for your own lifestyle. Here are some of the nicest cars of 2013 that will allow you to take those exciting one-tank weekend trips even further.

1. 2013 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid

When it comes to luxury cars, Lincoln is a name that stands out as one of the best. With their MKZ Hybrid, they are continuing that tradition. A mid-size sedan, the MKZ Hybrid is a car that the company put a lot of effort into to get people excited about jumping into the drivers seat of a Lincoln. The car has an MSRP of close to $36,000, making it relatively affordable, but packs all the usual Lincoln features and luxuries that people have grown accustomed to. Throw in the fact that it’s a hybrid and you definitely have a phenomenal car choice. It will get you 45 mpg, which is a lot more than the Lincoln that you might remember your parents driving you around in as a kid.

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  • radwriter

    You have got to be kidding. The Prius C? Even that traditional lover of Toyotas, Consumers’ Report, gave it an unacceptable rating.

    • tjwolf

      At first I didn’t believe your comment – but a quick google and I find you’re right! http://news.consumerreports.org/cars/2012/06/the-toyota-prius-c-isnt-a-good-car-and-heres-why.html

      Consumer Reports’ summarizes it as “a cheap [as in cheap feeling] car with an expensive drivetrain”.

    • Joe Passafiume

      I love consumer reports, but they are just plain wrong on the prius C. My dad has one and he loves it. It’s a $22,000 car that gets better MPG than any other vehicle this side of a plug-in. It’s practical and drives good, too.

    • Ned

      If you look at the story of small car crash testing, the Prius C got a poor score on offset frontal crash tests. See here (http://money.cnn.com/2014/01/22/autos/small-car-crash-test/index.html?iid=HP_River ) I don’t know where they got their “above average” safety rating. Maybe they were confusing the beefier regular Prius for their rating.

      • Deven Foskey

        Every car never before tested has a poor offset crash rating because they didn’t need to have it. To hell with regulations, we need the right to sue for getting your finger caught in the door. Then, we will have perfectly safe cars.

  • Laura Carr

    Not a single Mazda, really? The Mazda3 with SkyActive is head and shoulders above the Civic. After 20+ years of owning Hondas we just switched to Mazda and there’s no looking back. Less expensive, almost no road noise in the cabin, and it’s getting actual real world 38mpg, not the manufacturer lists this as it’s specs. If they would just add SkyActiv to the whole Mazda line I think they could outsell Honda.

    • chudilo

      No road noise in a Mazda? That just isn’t true. I own a 3yo Mazda 3 hatchback.and There is A LOT of road noise !

      • Laura Carr

        Must be the hatchback, with the sedan there is almost none. Unless it’s a difference between years, mine is a 2012.

        • Cesar Abraham

          The sedan is also NOISY..the wife calls it the noisy Boy..you must have just got your DL

          • Laura Carr

            Afraid not, I’ve had my DL for 22 years.

        • Nutzi Pelosi

          But then again you are deaf.

          • Laura Carr

            Wow, I didn’t know Troll caves got Wi-Fi.

          • MVH1

            LOL. I hope I can remember that clever line to use later. Very good.

          • Marauder Man

            They have had it for a few years now :)

      • Brian Mendicino

        It’s definitely the hatchback. I had one too. I got a sedan as a loaner for a week and the highway road noise was significantly less. The front headlights are a slightly different shape and it causes the air to hit the side mirrors more in the hatch.

      • Brian Mendicino

        I had a 2006 Mazda3 hatch. Outside of an issue with the third gear syncros at 155,000 miles, I had no complaints with it.

    • Jim

      I bought an ’04 Mazda 3 new. It actually beat out the Civic as the top compact that year. I don’t even have 65K and I have a severe rust issue that is well documented online and Mazda will do nothing about it. At every opportunity I inform the public of this….I will never again buy a Mazda

      • Rainbowman18

        If you live in an area that has snow and sand and salt are used, or a fairly wet, rainy area, you may want to consider a company called Ziebart. They rustproof a car the way it should be done. Although it may be too late for your automobile to do, Mazda should stand by their product; especially if you have any extended warranty on the car for rust. Sorry to hear about it. I hope you get it cleared up.

      • Marauder Man

        Mazda has had a severe rust problem for decades. The rear wheelwells are the worst and it just spreads from there.

    • Cesar Abraham

      My Wife drives the mazda3 with skyactive,,NOT IMPRESSED! My Honda Civic is a better buy..zooooom Zooom back inside your hole

      • Laura Carr

        Excuse me? To whom are you speaking with your “back inside your hole” comment. I gave my opinion, not an attack on anyone or Honda. And if you’re not impressed by the SkyActive then you both are doing something wrong. Over the Summer I drove ours half way across the country and back again. I got 43.6 mpg driving 75mph on the interstate on the three tank average it took to drive to Boston from MO. SkyActive is best for longer trips at higher speeds, that’s when you really notice the gas saved.

        • Marauder Man

          You really do toss that skyactive word around. How is it different than any other fossil burning engine?

          • Laura Carr

            It’s a redesign on how gas is aspirated into the engine. It makes it more effective at higher cruising speeds.

          • Marauder Man

            How is it any different than other manufacturers motors exactly?

        • Ken

          KNOW DOUBT ,CANNOT EVEN CARRY ON A CIVIL CONVERSATION ,IN THIS SOCIETY ANYMORE ,WITHOUT BEING ATTACKED???????????????????????

      • G2

        NOT IMPRESSED with your comments. Not needed and sounds like you work for the competition. I own the ’12 Mazda 3 Grand Touring and there is plenty of road noise unless you are driving over freshly paved roads. Heck, read any of the reviews from respectable car review websites and this is always listed as one of the cons… SkyActive is awesome, but I don’t get nearly half the gas mileage Laura Carr gets with her 3. Driving 7 hours going 75mph down I-95 and my tank is dry… Sounds like she is working for Mazda corporation as well.

        • Laura Carr

          No, that was what I got in the real world driving I-70 to I-80. I don’t know what the weight difference is, but mine is not a Grand Touring.

        • Ken

          LOVE MY 2007 MAZDA 3 SPEED BOUGHT NEW IN 2007 ,PUT MY 2007 SPED UP AGAINST ANY CIVIC SI , SURE ALITTLE ROAD NOISE ,NOTHING MY BORLA CAT BACK ,AND WEAPONS AIR INTAKE,DO NOT DRIVE IT LIKE A IDIOT ONLY CUSTOMS ADDED TO IT , LOVE MY MAZDA 3 SPEED HAS 28,652 MILES ON IT ,AND CANNOT WAIT TILL THE NEW SPEED COMES OUT HOPE THEY TURBO THE 2.5L ? ONLY CAR WILL TRADE MINE IN ON ,IS A NEW SPEED ,DRIVEN A FOCUS ST NOT IMPRESSED ,DODGE DUD, MEAN DART , JOKE , FOR THE PRICE MAZDA 3S COMPARE AND MOST OF THE TIME ARE MUCH BETTER ,IAM TALKING SAME CAR GROUP WISE OF COURSE !!! ZOOM ZOOM

      • BlancaP

        I guess you are a lot better at assessing cars that Road & Track and also Car& Driver, both of which put the Mazda3 (and Mazda6) in ther top ten cars of 2013.

    • Thom Perkins

      Mazdas are crap, had one, never again.

      • Kona Gurion

        What year/model was your Mazda? During the Ford years, or of the latest models? I’ve a 2008 CX-9, which was when it was MotorTrend’s SUV of the year. Never had any issues and it out handles all SUVs in it’s class. I’ve never had rust issues thankfully, and it still performs well, although it’s GPS tech is now sorely dated unfortunately.

        • http://surveyjet.net/ Sylwester Kopec

          Mazda CX-9 is made in Japan.

      • Nick

        I’ve been driving an 08 Mazdaspeed 3 for since I bought it back in 08 and love it. Only gripe is an EGR valve issue that everyone with the 2.3L turbo (MS3, MS6, CX-7) all seem to have.
        Seriously considering the new 2014+ Mazda 6 for my next car.

        • Ken

          Love my 2007 mazda 3 speed bought new in 2007 has 28,879 miles on it ,never have had any problems you mention above out of mine (egr) none ,one problem only have had power steering recall years ago ! anyone know when and if they are making a mazda 3 and 6 speed version? will they use the tride and true 2.3L TURBO or maybe just maybe Turbo that 2.5L ,SORT OF GOING TO HAVE TO MAKE A SPEED ,CANNOT WAIT TO SEE IT ,AND TEST DRIVE ,ONLY CAR WOULD TRADE MY 2007 SPEED ON FOR THE PRICE !AND THERE IS ALITTLE ROA NOISE WITH IT ,NOTHING MY BORLA CATBACK DID NOT FIX!

      • Praise_Allah

        93 mazda 323 hatchback. 195K. aint pretty but pushes 40mpg on the highway and trust it to drive anywhere. Always cram 3 of my friends in it and go on summer trips out of town

    • Steve

      I drove a new rental, with SkyActive, 3500 miles this July and did over 40 MPG on the Kansas to Road Island portion of the trip. We drove the hatch back and the road noise was totally acceptable, (much better than my ford). It performed well and it had great response in the appellation mountains. I cant tell you how it would do in longevity, but for a high mph vehicle I was highly impressed.

    • Marauder Man

      Can you explain what skyactive is?

  • Olyboy

    Kia Optima Hybrid, Hyundai Sonata – both nice high mpg with comfort for the dollar much higher than most cars.

    • 2SUTHRN

      and they look better as well

    • Alvonte Rogers

      I bought a Kia, never again, broke down within the month, took it to the Kia Dealer’s official repair shop, they had no clue what’s wrong with it. Hyundai’s are great however.

      • Peter Longtine

        Same car as a hyundai…same motors and everything sorry.

        • Alvonte Rogers

          Well it seems that my experience with Kia was just awful, but their Hyundai branch was a great one….

          • Guest

            Well, the the MPG fiasco is was perhaps the reason why it was not included in this particular analysis. If you are unfamiliar with it, please review the class action lawsuits, and associated settlements.

  • Lee

    Amazing the hype over hybrid. We have a 2013 Altima around town we are averaging 35 miles to the gallon and over 38 on the road. With the pure drive auto this car is really nice to drive and continues to impress with performance.

  • Seer Clearly

    I really wonder what the editors were thinking – or who paid them to think. The Chevy Volt is ‘nicer’ than all the non-luxury makes listed and gets far better mileage: I’m getting an average of 90mpg on mine, with great performance. The interior is nicely appointed, quiet, and 9 months into my ownership I have yet to find any problem with my Volt, it has the highest initial quality of any car I’ve owned.

    • missy9205

      I love the look of the volt I have a 2011 Malibu right now and it will be 3 years old in September and the only service it has ever had was an oil change and tire rotation. I can’t figure out why people buy foreign vehicles. I have read they use cheap parts and hope they don’t break.

      • Hollie

        Where is the Malibu built? Just because it says ‘Chevy’ doesn’t mean a thing. My Honda was built in the U.S.A. Can you say the same about your Chevy? Just asking. Where do you get that they use cheap parts? After 6 years my car is still running great with only regular maintenance and a new set of tires. Sounds like you are just ignorant of other makes.

        • missy9205

          its built in Michigan. Honda is Japanese and the profits go to Japan. you got lucky that is all! its sub standard with sub standard.

          • allan kluttz

            Actually, we live in a global economy now. Technically, Honda builds more cars and components in the US than chevy does currently. If we were discussing Mazda it would be another story… The profits do not go to Japan. Most of it goes to American Honda. Similarly, many other manufactures like Chevy source components and or vehicles from mexico, china, etc…. As a matter of fact, Chevy sources far more components from other countries, and merely builds them in America. The new Chevy Malibu will be the prime example. Do not let corporate greed confuse you.

          • missy9205

            my car is 75% American built.

          • Kona Gurion

            Toyota, Honda & several German makes have been building their cars with more US content than many US brands for decades now. If you think otherwise, you’re really ignorant of the car manufacturing industry. There is a reason why all three American car makes bankrupted or nearly tanked (Ford). Chrysler is now owned by Fiat, and GM is still in the process of paying it’s debt for the government bailout.

          • JackNYC

            To add to the point, the profit goes to shareholders who live on every continent. The Japanese vs. American vs German (some BMWs now made in US) car company argument is getting pointless if most of the price of the car is spent on parts and labor in the U.S. and profits are mostly going to institutional shareholders who might be the California Pension system or something similar. And Europeans and others own shares of GM so some GM profit goes offshore, too. So what’s the argument about national car companies, really?

          • labright

            Allan nice to hear that you are so rich that you work for a loss. Do you really think that the Japanese companies don’t strive for a profit too. American Honda is not owned by Americans, they just manufacture here since it’s cheaper than manufacturing in Japan.

          • Jemmy

            The ‘profits’ represent only 10% of the cost of the car. The other 90% go into salaries for American workers, contracts for American contractors to build the facilities, American utilities/logistics/vendors to service Honda USA, charitable contributions made to US charities, taxes paid to US state and local governments…..you get the idea.
            The remaining 10%? Well, a portion does indeed go ‘back to Japan’ but a majority of it stays right here where it is paid out to investors (check out HMC on the NASDAQ) or invested by Honda USA management to finance the company. The cost of repatriating profits is high (exchange rate gain/loss, transfer pricing, bank fees, independence audits, effective corporate tax rates higher than in the USA).
            As for substandard….I’ll point out Honda’s Six Sigma certification at it’s Alabama plant. How many of the Big 3 have plants in the USA that meet Six Sigma standards? Look it up.

        • missy9205

          My car is 75% US Built. You can be loyal to the Japs if you want to it’s up to you. I am USA all the way! JUNK!

        • labright

          That’s funny I’ve had no problem with my Volt but my 2007 Honda Civic needed a new engine at 1 year – a manufacturing issue.

      • Skrunklesthepig

        Wait to trade it in and learn what taking a hit on depreciation means then….ouch.

    • Ken Howe

      ON the volt what it cost to replace the batteris , i heard they may last up to 10yrs. or what would the value of this car in say 8yrs.

    • DARRS SPOOK

      How far does your Volt go before a plug in…can I drive it sixty miles?

    • sbarnes

      I am sure it’s lovely to drive now but please could you also submit a review at 10 years or 100000 miles! Thanks!

  • Peter Longtine

    Love my Chevy Cruze..shits and gits……37 on the freeway that is…looks nicer than a civic and is better built than a cardboard Volkswagen or Audi rattle trap,and has a ton of power for a small car.Sippin gas and whoopin ass!!! I may trade up for the new turbo diesel version soon.

  • David

    I’d prefer to have bmw 320i or 328d both get at least 36mpg and not on this list.

    • Teddy Salad

      maybe cuz they drive like bricks

  • John E Strom Jr.

    All but one a “hybrid”. I wouldn’t own a hybrid. First off they’re only making they because the stupid idiots in the federal government and their equally stupid COLA mileage standards. The only way they can meet those dumb standards if to produce [and sell at a loss] these dumb hybrids that government agencies and trendy liberals buy. Smart people by a non-hybrid at a far cheaper price. The ONLY decent alternative fuel/energy car is the Tesla S sedan which is truly outstanding. The rest are over priced junk.

    • Bryan DeArment

      I Believe U Mean Their CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy).

      • John E Strom Jr.

        Bryan, You’re right. Couldn’t think of the name. Thanks! :)

    • Art Bagnall

      That’s right cut off your nose to spite your face.

      Making decisions on ideology (if that’s what you call your name-calling fit) is a sure way to get a great vehicle.

      You certainly are an angry person, aren’t you?

      “Stupid idiots, dumb standards, trendy liberals, overpriced junk.”

      Get a grip, man.

      • John E Strom Jr.

        Bagnall, I’m sick of fools like you who lack common sense. The damned government keeps sticking their noses into EVERYTHING as though we need them and, yes, they’re invariably LIBERAL jerks like you who know better than we, how to spend OUR money, how WE should live our lives. Were it not for that damned government those hybrids would not exist but to create them so the “average” car gets a certain mileage per gallon – only a liberal nitwit could come up with. Angry? Yep, because we have morons in government like Obama who is as clueless as you are. I rest my case and stay as FAR away from ALL government as possible.

        • QKodiak

          I take it you don’t like high mileage, instant torque, and smooth silent operation like many do.

          • John E Strom Jr.

            Most hybrids are a joke. The over whelming majority are bought by government since intelligent people don’t buy them – well, except for “superior” liberals. High mileage? Surely you jest. That said, there is ONE car that does meet your criterion but its NOT a hybrid. I am speaking of the Tesla S. The American hybrids and all-electric cars suck.

          • QKodiak

            You’re not speaking from experience. I am. Most hybrids are not a joke. The cars are quite nice. It’s their high price tags that are. They do deliver the ethereal experience of electric at lower speeds. It’s nice. If you can’t afford a Tesla which is the ultimate car, you can settle for a Volt according to a dual owner. http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1084138_tesla-model-s-vs-chevy-volt-owner-compares-electric-cars

            I have driven the Ford Fusion hybrid and plug-in hybrid, Chevy Volt, and the Hyundai Sonata hybrid. I’ve also driven the Nissan Leaf and the Ford Focus EV. I have been in and around the Toyota Prius, Ford C-Max and Lincoln MKZ hybrid. All of the previous vehicles impressed me except the Prius.

            Don’t get me wrong, some hybrids are unrefined, anemic, aren’t very efficient, pointless, and/or boring and appliance-like. But that’s not the case with every hybrid.

            American can still make good cars. Look at the latest Chevy Impala. It’s displaced the Japanese cars in its class as the favorite of the industry, winning many awards. The Jeep Cherokee has also been favorably compared to the BMW, Audi, and Porsche’s offerings. Ford’s Fusion is one of the most beautiful cars on the road inside and out.

            As far as mileage, high 30s to mid 40s is considered high mileage. All of the hybrids on this list get better mileage than the gas-only versions, esp. in the city where they spend most of their time.

            My original post still stands. All the hybrids I drove and have heard about from friends have those features. Let me clarify about the torque. It is instant, and the electric motor fills in the torque dead spots making it smooth and seamless. It’s the amount of torque that varies widely. For instance, the Honda Accord Hybrid has more oomph than the V6 version, but the Honda Civic Hybrid is quite slow.

            Forget about all the politics surrounding the cars. They are irrelevant to how good a car is, and in my experience, I would recommend most of them if money is not too tight.

          • John E Strom Jr.

            QKodiak, To each his own. The only electric car I would buy would be a Tesla. The only hybrid I can think of that I would buy [if I could afford one] is the new Porsche 918. Sad to say I can’t afford one! :(

          • QKodiak

            I would agree with the electric car; 70-90 is simply too limited, and I don’t need two cars yet. (not married) You should test drive the Honda Accord Hybrid and Chevy Volt. You’d probably like them, esp. the Volt which has 273 lb-ft of instant torque available. You don’t know until you try it.

            I really want a Tesla as well, but I’ll have to wait a while for my portfolio to allow for a Tesla.

          • John E Strom Jr.

            QKodiak, every man needs a toy! Even single guys. :)

          • QKodiak

            Mine would be an aircraft.

          • GreenDriver

            When I test drove a Volt, I was totally expecting a “Prius-like” experience. Wow, what a shocker…the Volt is quick, handles like a dream, dead silent and has an amazingly smooth ride. It’s also ultra-solid and well built…slam the doors and hatch on a Prius and compare the sound to that of the Volt! Attempts to compare the Volt to the Prius are like comparing a Mercedes to a Yugo, they are different worlds. (My spouse drives a Prius, so believe me…I know of what I speak! She’s now quite envious of my Volt…keeps saying “Buy a Tesla, and I’ll take the Volt!!)

            I bought a Volt the very next day after my test drive (April 6, 2013) and haven’t put gasoline in yet, as of Jan 2014. The dealer filled the tank when I bought it…after driving about 8000 miles, it’s still half full!! There is NO WAY I could ever go back to a conventional vehicle after owning an EV. When I occasionally drive my SUV (which is actually quite luxurious) it feels very primitive and old fashioned! I’m looking forward to a few years, when improved technology and manufacturing techniques will bring Tesla S-like performance and range down into a more accessible price range. Until then, the Volt is a wonderful transitional vehicle!

    • donojibway

      I guess I’m an idiot because I bought a Ford Fusion Hybrid 4 years ago, I now have 86,800 trouble free miles on it, and I have saved $6780 on gas. My average FE for the entire time based on complete fill-up data is 41 mpg. It is not junk. Other FFH drivers on our Forum have more miles than that, and no one has had to replace the high voltage batteries. On test fleets of Ford Escapes in taxi fleets, these same nickel metal hydride batteries went up to 300,000 miles. So exactly what is your problem with hybrids?

  • http://www.redeemedrambling.blogspot.com/ Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist

    I’m not sure how the 38 mpg Mazda6 didn’t make this list…

  • Michael Herren

    I’ve driven the C-max it’s a really nice automobile. Drives great, super quiet when running in electric mode. The Lincoln MKZ is Awesome, if you want luxury this is the one.

  • Peter Mortensen

    If the subject is efficiency, nothing beats EV cars getting around 100MPGe.
    If you combine with all other qualities, the EV car Tesla Model S is the highest rated car of 2013 among all cars.

    Unfortunately there is no really good EV car made in the mid to low-end segments of the market (nerdy designs and too short range).

  • Stephen Brinckerhoff

    No Chevy Volt? No Tesla, the highest ranking vehicle tested by Consumer Reports? You short-changed a lot of good makes and models.

    • Mike

      Chevy Volt? are you kidding…
      LOL.

      • GreenDriver

        Mike, turn off Rush Limbaugh and turn your brain on. The Volt is a spectacular car with an spectacularly high consumer satisfaction rating. And one that uses virtually no gasoline in everyday use for the vast majority of owners.

        • RHO1953

          It’s a turd, our local dealer can’t give ‘em away.

          • labright

            At 20000 miles I’ve used 81.4 gallons. That’s 245 miles a gallon. My son gets 65 mpg on his. It is fully loaded and much better on the eyes then the Prius C

          • Ken

            UGLY ,WAY OVERPRICED ,SAVE A TREE ?? I GUESS COULD NOT GIVE ME A VOLT?? WOULD TAKE A TESLA

    • Seer Clearly

      I have a Volt now for the last year and it’s a blast to drive. Beats everyone off the line, climbs the mountains of Colorado with vigor, has an infotainment system that beats the pants off the competition, feels solid and handles well, and on top of all that… my average MPG is 104!

      • missy9205

        I met a girl just before I bought my 2014 Malibu and she had a Chevy
        Volt. she loved it and was buying one for her daughter. I really did like them but thought there were better for close range city. I am on the expressway a lot. just wondering about that one. love my new Malibu though. I have the LT2 and had a 2011 LT1 last time.

      • RHO1953

        Unless the heater is running, which is all winter. No heat while running on AAA’s.

      • Marauder Man

        104? You should be on TV

  • http://www.facebook.com/fernando.corral.106 Fernando Corral

    hyundai are the best fuel efficient cars

  • Guest

    Mazda? LOL. Seriously? LOL!!!!!! If you want a good car, buy American, and not that rice burner JUNK!

    • ken

      Please come back to reality!

    • Kona Gurion

      Buy American? You mean the bankrupt one who still owes money to the US government or the one that’s now owned by Fiat…? American car companies make great trucks. The rest of their product is still crap compared to imports. If you haven’t noticed, there’s a reason why Detroit became one of the first modern cities in the USA to become bankrupt. Rice burners still own the American car market and have better overall resale values (although Buick does pretty well on resale value…but it’s a Buick…meh).

    • KIMNY

      My Mazda6 2013 was built in the USA. Fast & spacious, love it!

      • Art Bagnall

        It’s UNION made, too. I’m sure some of the Tea Partiers would want that reminder. Most of the good American cars are Union built. The Volt, Focus, Mazda 6, regular size pickup trucks, Caddys, GMC’s, etc. You can find a great Union built car at http://www.uaw.org.

        • QKodiak

          The Tesla Model S is not. HATE Unions.

  • Shelly Steinmetz

    I test drove some of these and ended up with the Dodge Dart. 41 mpg on the highway, I have been averaging 40 between city/hwy. It’s roomier than some on the list, it’s also not a hybrid-so now worries on replacing expensive batteries. It has a pretty smooth ride and low road noise, I’m not sure it deserves to be on this list but I chose it over some vehicles on here lol. I’m really impressed with it so far, my 4th Dodge/Jeep/Chrysler vehicle and none have disappointed.

    • Doctor Girlfriend

      If you have the 2.4 or 1.4 Turbo, you have an engine with Fiat’s Multiair system, which can do amazing things for fuel economy, and in the 1.4 Turbo, make some really mean sounds for such a small engine. They’re great little power plants.

  • guest1010101

    so what on the 2013 Volkswagen Passat Diesel assume an average of 31 mpg and $3.30 a gal diesel its more like $1700 for 15000 miles a year. My 2010 Corvette averages 22 mpg around town and does 30 plus highway on regular and with 4 sec 0-60 times and super car top speed it cost per year is a bit more at $2250. What is more fun to drive?

    • Feeling Crazy

      I can tell you the one that is more comfortable to drive. Hint: it’s not the one with the bow tie.

      • Dually

        If you can’t get comfy in a Vette with all the adjustments on the seats and steering wheel then I think you will have a problem in any vehicle. I regularly spend 12 hours in mine and suffer no problems.

    • Dennis Parkin

      Replying to guest1010101…What’s more fun to drive? My 2012 Porsche 911, 200 mph plus all day long.

      • Skrunklesthepig

        He was making a point you seemed to have missed while trying to impress others about, and of all things, a Porsche ….nice but there are many nicer vehicles IMHO.

      • Ken

        BET THE VETTE !!! SNOOB

    • Gary

      The VW TDIs can get over 45MPG highway. My Golf TDI gets somewhere between 40 and 45MPG, depending upon tires, driving conditions, etc., and while I can’t drag race Corvettes, the handling is really good on these things! It is fun to drive. It’s not the right car if you want to drag race, but then, this article wasn’t about the best cars for drag racing, it was for the best fuel efficient cars. However, 22/30 MPG may be good for a sports car, and helps to mitigate the cost, so if you wanted to buy a sports car, I think the Corvette is a good choice. But don’t sneer too much at small cars — they can still be a lot of fun to drive.

      As for the city mileage, combined mileage between work and local errands means that my average is around 35 to 36 MPG. We’ve had cars that did far worse. It didn’t matter much years ago when fuel was cheaper, but now it’s starting to be a big chunk of change. I figure in about 20 years the car can pay for itself! ;-)

      • Ned

        I have to agree with you. I have the Passat TDI SEL with the 6 speed automatic. My lowest fuel mileage was 36 mpg around town and the max was 52 mpg on a trip from NY to Georgia. The average for 23K miles is 41.1 mpg as tracked by Fuelly.com. They are just giving the EPA theoretical mileage which is usually lower than actual mileage for diesels. Expect 10% better mileage with the VW diesels.

    • Cudjoekeyguy

      Oh, and wait until VW’s fabulous Diesel injection system fails and strands you somewhere in open country or uphill? Major fix replacing all of the injectors and the fuel pump.
      Been there; Done that……………….But now My Infiniti is cheaper to operate, much more luxuious inside, and 300HP. Yea, for a compact wagon, a Mom’s car? Yea baby!

    • DMcG

      Except that 31 is way too low. My coworker is averaging over 40.

  • jeepwonder

    I can’t believe the hype for the Lincoln. The fusion is much less and the gets the same mileage, some even think it’s more attractive.

    • LukeJohn

      The Lincoln is ok from behind but from the front is one uuugly mutt.

      • jeepwonder

        And the market seems to agree with you.
        if you go to the site ‘good car bad car’ and check out the sales figures you can see just how quickly and completely Lincoln sales have crashed.

      • Lokisgodhi

        I agree. The Lincoln Zephyr was a nice looking car when it came out. Then they insisted on putting that huge stupid looking grill on it.

        Memo to Lincoln. If a wanted a vehicle with a cow catcher on the front. I’d buy a locomotive.

        It seems every time they freshen or restyle a vehicle they put a larger stupider grill on it. In their attempt to emulate Cadillac, They seem oblivious to the reality that to be edgy and avant-garde you have start from the ground up and do the whole package not just slap on an add on to a conventional styled vehicle.

  • Thom Perkins

    Looks like the VW CC not the Passat on here.

  • ponobill

    Wow, No Tesla? Something very wrong here. No Chevy Volt? My wife has one here on Maui–fantastic car. Comfortable–even for my 6’2″ 240 pound creaky body, spooky quiet, great sound system and climate control. She has about 450 miles on it and she’s used a little less than a gallon of gas. Sorry, this review is nonsense.

  • DRJJ

    Camry hybrid! As fast as a 1960s muscle car, gets 40mpg avg everywhere/always, roomy/upscale/bank vault quiet, bulletproof design, you can buy one now for 24k and save $100 month on gas on avg-makes it a $12k car after gas savings in 10 years.

  • al

    I had a ’63 Volvo that got 33 mpg no matter how you drove it. It would go over 100mph. Where is all the tech advancement? My brother-in-law’s 62 Chevy Impala with 6 cyl. and overdrive got 27 on the highway and it had a lot of steel in it. I don’t see all this new s### with all the computers and junk on them being worth the money. My wife drives a 2011 Sentra that is supposed to get 36 and will not do better than 26 downhill with a tailwind. If you slap it with your hand it will dent. Modern stuff is junk. However, I agree with the guy with the Vette. My nephew drives one and it will get nearly 30 just cruising down the freeway. May as well go in style. I drive an F-250 Diesel Crew now and burn lots of diesel and I don’t give a $$$$. I like for the tree huggers to sneer at me. I’ve lived long enough to burn my money my way.

  • BahamaMama

    Camry Hybrid should be here. It gets 42 mpg and has super reliability. Mine is 6 years old, used as our primary family car and has never had an issue of any kind. All I do is standard maintenance with oil, filter and other fluid changes. When I eventually get a new car (could be some years down the road with this one going strong), you can bet it will be another Camry Hybrid.

  • Paul Haskins

    The best vehicle is the Prius Plug in. Period. This writer obviously does not know vehicles. How about nearly 70 mpg overall and the Advanced model is just as noteworthy and the Ford and Honda products. And, we test all cars for our carfamily column.

    • QKodiak

      The Chevy Volt is far better than the Prius by virtue of the fact that it’s not a Prius. MPG is not the only factor that makes a great vehicle. Prius sacrificed driving pleasure for efficiency, and that is unacceptable. It’s also quite unattractive, unlike the Volt which is built in America and drives like a Mazda. With 273 lb-ft of instant torque and corner hugging ability, it’s quite fun.

      The Prius Plug-in still uses gas. Some Volt drivers don’t use gas at all. In fact, during the 95% of the time not spent on long trips, no one has to use gas at all.

      To put it plainly, the Volt is exciting and the Prius is boring. Now where’d that Tesla go? That’s the car I’m getting when my portfolio grows large enough.

      • Paul Haskins

        We have driven both the Prius plug in and the Volt for our review column. The Prius is better for anyone who travels over 30 miles a day. The Volt’s resale value is extremely low and the interior is not the easiest to live with on a daily basis. Visibility to the rear is very limited. The Prius is not boring. We averaged over 71 mph and the car isn’t a bad handling vehicle. Resale is very high. If you want to buy a Volt just wait a year when they come off lease and you can scoop them up for very little of its original value. As for acceleration, you don’t really buy either car for acceleration, however using the Power button on the Prius enables you to enjoy easily pass on crowed highways. Now, you can recharge the Prius in under 90 minutes on 220. Because the Volt has a larger, and far more expensive battery pack come replacement time, it requires three to four times the amount. As for some owners never having to start their Volt; you do realize what happens when gas engines sit for a long period of time.

        • GreenDriver

          If you’ve actually driven both the Prius plug-in and the Volt, then you’d know they offer two totally different driving experiences…the Prius is a econobox and the Volt is a luxurious and sporty mid-size sedan. It’s absolutely pointless to compare them. I say this as someone who has both vehicles in their driveway. (BTW, rear visibility in the Prius and Volt is equally awful.)

          I have to wonder what kind of “review column” you offer when you somehow see the large battery pack of the Volt as a disadvantage! It’s that large pack that allows the tremendous gas-free range…I ROUTINELY get 45 miles of all electric range, as opposed to the 8-10 miles my spouse gets in her PIP. With a Level II charger, the Volt charges from empty to full in less than four hours. Mine is programmed to do it in the early morning, while I’m asleep and the power rates are low.

          I’ve commuted daily in the Volt since April 2013 and I’ve NEVER put gasoline in it…in fact, I’ve never even opened or seen the gas cap and the tank is still half full from when the dealership first filled it. If that doesn’t open your eyes to the differences between these vehicles, nothing will. The Volt is a pure EV that also carries a backup generator for extended trips, while the PIP is a conventional hybrid with a plug-in charging system shoehorned into it.

          You should also know that the Volt automatically does periodic, short fuel burns if you’re not routinely using gasoline. This keeps the engine in excellent shape without any intervention from the owner. It also protects against aging fuel by using the entire tank if it hasn’t been refilled or topped off within a year.

  • AMC

    Maybe the reason they don’t use the Chevy’s because they only used non government owned auto manufacturers….

    • GreenDriver

      You should crack open a newspaper sometime, you are not up to date on current events.

  • Alex Dunne

    The Lexus ES is based on the Toyota CAMRY, not the Avalon. Author, check your facts before you post. (Also, consider having more than a single editor read your article to be sure that you’re not simply presenting biased and inane information.)

    • QKodiak

      The Lexus ES used to be based on the Toyota Camry. The new ES is based off the Avalon. You should check your “facts”.

    • CGriffin

      QKodiak is right. Starting in 2013, the ES is now based on the Avalon.

  • Butch Stephens

    I’ve owned almost every conceivable make of vehicle…case in point since u guys are comparing mazda’s, VW’s, Toyota’s, and Honda’s…i should mention before i proceed that of the other 2 german cars BMW and Mercedes which i’ve owned both, the BMW’s were extremely reliable but the Mercedez was JUNK and so expensive to fix! Now back to the topic….Mazda’s and VW’s are crap after 100K miles…they are only OK when they are new and low mileage. If you want reliability go with either Toyota (my 01 solara SLE V-6 has 239K miles runs perfect!) or Honda (my 03 Accord V6 3.0 EXL NAVI has 188K miles runs like new), and my GF’s mom’s 95 Camry 4 cyl has 319k miles still passed smog! If you want RELIABILITY and GOOD RESALE VALUE, you only need to remember 2 brands–TOYOTA and HONDA period!

  • Paul Haskins

    The new Mazdas are significantly improved and much better. Honda has to redesign its products several times of late due to the competition eating their lunch. If you are an old person or one who likes to drive a Buick like car the Honda is for you. The Mazdas handle much better and the new engine gets better fuel mileage. The Mazda’s also handle much better. Head up. Honda has refused to allow certain members of the press to test their vehicles for fear of negative reviews. This has only happened in the last two years.

    • TransMaroBird

      Total BS, Honda refusing tests? Ha! What made up foolishness. The 2012 Civic sucked and they turned completely around in a year.

  • Peter Del Frate

    This is the reason hybrids are not doing as well as expected; they are all ugly as sin.

    • GreenDriver

      What planet are you on?!? Hybrids “not doing as well as expected?!?” Why do you suppose every car manufacturer on earth is developing hybrids and other alternative drivetrains?

    • CGriffin

      Seems to me, the only hybrids that are ugly as sin are the ones that were created to be a hybrid from the ground up, like the Toyota Prius and the Honda Insight. They have sold over 3 million Prius’, and sales are still going strong. Honda, however has discontinued the Insight. Other hybrids are just regular cars that have been converted to be hybrids – Camry, Avalon, Highlander, Lexus ES, Lexus RS, Civic, Accord, Elantra, Optima, Fusion, Lincoln MKZ, etc. None of those cars are “ugly as sin”.

  • Ryan Taylor

    Good thing this was written before the Infiniti Q50 Hybrid came out or I would have something to complain about. With the car’s debut, I wonder where it would sit now. http://www.yelp.com/biz/cerritos-infiniti-cerritos

  • PatriotFirst1776

    The best new car is a Hyundai. Best warranty, great styling, dependable and the best combined global CAFE mileage ratings of any manufacturer. The Sonata Hybrid is not only a great looking car, but as a mid-sized car, the EPA considers the interior space comparable to a large car. It can be loaded up with a host of technologies that are sure to make you smile and enjoy the car long after you have driven it off the lot. Also, Hyundai’s safety ratings are among the highest in the industry. We have been buying them for over 10 years – great cars. PS Great re-sale when the time comes.

    • TransMaroBird

      Nice handle for a foreign car buyer…..right, you’re a “patriot” first….

      • PatriotFirst1776

        Actually, the Santa Fe is made in the US, half the Elantras are made in the US, the Sonata’s are made here….so before you poke a finger, get your info straight. Moreover, dude, we live in “global village” where cars and parts are “made” everywhere and cars are “manufactured” everywhere.

        So, before you make an off-handed slight…do some homework. Clearly, you are an ignorant “flamer” who wants to bring his trolling shill wanna-be-skills to a party that he could never truly attend or contribute to.

        Do some research, moron…. and send me an apology. This is an info-posting-site ….NOT an attack site.

        • TransMaroBird

          GFY!

          • PatriotFirst1776

            Wow, what a classy punk you are!

        • Madrigal Man

          Where it is made has nothing to do with where the profits end up. Foreign makers moving assembly into the US is simply a marketing ploy designed to make you feel better about buying their product. If you are serious about supporting American workers/industry there is no substitute for buying from American companies. Btw, your ranting only demonstrates how your obvious naivete is derived from your equally obvious immaturity. Just so you know.

          • PatriotFirst1776

            Sir, you understanding of the supply side and lines of profit sharing in a global economy are seriously wanting. The free market certainly supplies profits to a global company and SOME profits go back to the home office. Free commerce is one in which you can and should not spite anyone their profits and how they use them. What is important is along the way, if you are making a global product, the monies involved in R&D-ing, developing, making, selling, distributing and servicing products and servicing are spread around so everyone benefits. Car dealerships employ a LOT of people and because of it the whole host of services needed to run, service and maintain a dealership are localized and the money stays local, the salaries are spent locally,local utilities make money, taxes are collected and spent locally. I could go on and on….but I am not here to give you, a proven eco-numb-skull an economics lesson because you clearly wouldn’t understand and DON’T understand them in the first place.

            As Buckminister Fuller proclaimed back in the late 60′s, we live in a “global village”……so get use to it and try to understand it …. heck, embrace it or you will stay a provincial, small-minded pedestrian fool.

  • Nutzi Pelosi

    I have always liked Mazdas but there styling and MPG for a period starting in 2004-2010 was just hideous with that big cheap plastic grill that looked like a clown smile and the horrible minivan that had the ugliest style lines I had ever seen. But now it looks like MPG and great styling are back.

    • Mel10

      I agree, Just purchased a 2013 Mazda 3 for my daughter., I drove it about 350 highway miles to drop it off to her in college. What a fine vehicle at 40 mpg and got it for under 20k.

  • Matthew Tackett

    While I would never consider a Prius C one of the “best” cars on the market, it is a reasonable car for in town daily drives. It is my wife’s car. Through the summer, 50+mpg is not uncommon since the electric motor. Winter in the low to mid 40s. A trip to Tennessee from Ohio averaged 47.5 mpg over the trip. It is of the same build quality as other cars in the segment at that price point that we found. Not a ton of features, but that wasn’t high on the list. And the size is appropriate for the transportation needs that my wife has.
    As for me, a hybrid would never do. I insist on maintaining my vehicles myself. I also insist on 3 pedals and a shifter. Hybrids are harder to find in a manual. The Honda CRZ is available with a manual but does not have as good of fuel economy as a 1990 CRX HF. I know that it is more safe, but that isn’t saying much for progress.
    As far as politics, that should be a definite factor. I would not even consider GM or Chrysler. The way the contracts were dismantled, undermined the entire legal system. I personally would have been happy to see the companies go under the proper way. The remnants would have been purchased by interested parties and better products could emerge. Not saying there hasn’t been improvement. A 2009 GM product compared to a 2013 is like comparing a Yugo to a Porsche.

  • John kramarz

    I love my Chevy Sonic. Definitely get the LT or better. Very solid and full of little conveniences and features. If you like VWs, but are wary of their quality and cost of repairs, check out the Sonic. Looks a LOT like a VW GTi.
    The engine is from Germany, and the trans is from Austria, so it might be more German of a car than the VW (which could be from Mexico, I don’t know) I always like the Volkswagens, so don’t hate on me!

  • Gene

    Tesla S is the real car you need

  • Gene

    For over a hundred years we have been burning oil, which has two very dangerous effects oil companies try to run everything, and the global warming is responsible for the extreme temperatures and massive storms, would it be smart to give a 75% tax deduction for electric cars. Electric car make more sense than other fuels because huge companies with lobbies can’t control how you get your power.

    • 54Will

      “Electric car make more sense than other fuels because huge companies with lobbies can’t control how you get your power”
      I was mostly with You up until this last statement. There is no bigger monopoly on earth than electric power generation.

      • CGriffin

        Tesla is about to change that. If you haven’t heard in the news, they will soon start construction (here in the US) on what they are calling a lithium-ion “Gigafactory”. This one massive factory will make more lithium-ion cells per year than the entire world production was in 2013. Along with supplying their cars with batteries, Tesla will be making stationary battery packs for the solar industry that hang on the wall of your garage. Your solar array will charge the battery pack, and when the sun goes down, your house will then run off the pack. This has the potential to take many people largely off the grid. Also, if you don’t already know it, Tesla CEO Elon Musk is Chairman and primary stock holder at Solar City, the largest company in residential solar in the US.

  • Keith Jenkins

    You did not list the Ford Fusion??? really? It is generally considered the best overall. You have no credibility.

  • Eric

    Best car out there bar none the new S 550 Mercedes-Benz. Mileage is not the most important issue. Road holding, comfort, safety, amenities, and performance.

    • CGriffin

      Irrelevant to this article, though.

  • TR Unter

    Why do they only price 2 of these vehicles?

  • MikeMarkCA

    Hybrid, hybrid, hybrid my 4cy Accord with leather is getting 36mpg, and turns about 2100rpms cruising quiet and smooth at 80mph. The auto transmission is so smooth you can’t feel it shifting gears. Ample room in the rear, big trunk, great stereo, heated seats, anything you can think of is on that car.

  • Nick

    The new Lincoln MK-Z is a really fantastic looking car. First Lincoln I’ve ever really been interested in. Looks even better on the road than it does in pictures. I will be considering it for my next vehicle if the reviews are good and the reliability proves itself.

  • Brian Mendicino

    Tesla > All of these.

    • CGriffin

      When Tesla’s $35,000 Model E comes out in 2017, you could compare it with the cars in this list.

  • stan0301

    Well, my wife commutes and the Prius really does get 50mpg (we got the “full” sized one)–we liked it enough to get our daughter one too–our other cars? Two GT Mustangs and a Mercedes Roadster–and there is absolutely nothing wrong with a Prius performance–if you have any doubt I would suggest you talk to someone who owns one–or better, buy one and if you don’t agree sell it–they have phenomenal resale value.
    Stan

  • jc105

    I have a Hyundai sonata that gives me around 30 MPG and costed me only $19.000…….no Hybrid power train or any of that expensive difficult technology.

  • MrThroatpunch

    All these hybrid vehicles are nothing but high priced smoke and mirrors gimmicks to sucker naive eco-morons into spending major dollars to feel less guilty about their so-called carbon footprint whatever that means.

    • EvolvedApe

      Actually, all these hybrids are the first major steps towards new, more efficient and ultimately better technology, in an industry which has not fundamentally changed in a century.

      Dinosaurs like you don’t see it, don’t understand it and don’t get it.

      But the rest of the world moves on.

      • MrThroatpunch

        I have two words for you to study Mr devolvedApe “Energy Density” (ED). I will not go into the theory of DE because its likely you would not understand most of it. All I am going to say is this. Batteries as we know them today do not have the ED required to make for reliable long range transportation and will not for the next 100 years if ever. So putting these experiment electric vehicles out to a naive (scientific illustrate) public is noting more than political theater offered by this so-called president and his propaganda machine. Now you can move on if you like. Just don’t get run over by any battery powered unicorns!

        • shmuelman

          Great post, I love the kind of surety you have. Could only come from listening to Professor Rush Limbaugh, PhD every day. How do you have the slightest idea what can be achieved in 100 years or 20 for that matter? I wonder if they thought there would be a cellular phone system and internet 100 years ago. Gigaflop micoprocessors? Also, what do you mean by “scientific illustrate?”

          • MrThroatpunch

            “scientific illustrate?” = My answer to that one is simple: YOU, you utopian liberal progressive socialist bonehead!

        • CGriffin

          One of my vehicles is a 2008 Toyota Prius. I will say that I do not like the car’s styling at all. It’s hideous looking, but I bought it for a practical company car. It now has 275,000 miles on it, and because of its 48 mpg (city), and a total of only $1,000 in repairs (at Toyota dealership parts/labor rates!) throughout its entire life, it has saved me far more money than any other car I’ve ever owned. This car is still going strong today!

          In 2008, I didn’t buy the Prius to be “green”. I bought it to save a LOT of money. Best decision I’ve ever made.

          • MrThroatpunch

            I drive a Toyota as well. With proper minimal maintenance most Toyotas will run practically forever. Mine is a very old 1997 model and it still runs like a well broke in new model.
            I’ll give the old girl up when she turns 20 I think. I will buy another one when I do.

  • Ranger Dan Parsons

    Prius, which is Japanese for “Put your neighbor out of work to save $3.00 a week”.

  • Marauder Man

    The Ford CMax is great, except I can’t afford one even with the public tax dollar rebates the government offers. As for Mazda for some reason being mentioned in the comments, I have never seen one last more than 5 years without rusting.

  • jaguar

    I like Toyotas for their quality and we currently own two.

    Test drove a Prius last year thinking maybe I could try & overcome looks but I just cant stand the styling or lack there of. But cant justify buying the Tesla dang.

  • johnrob

    a cruise is a much better ride than a prius

  • peter mainwald

    Chevy Volt? Nowhere to be see… amazing how this incredible car gets consistently ignored..

    • Guest

      It said “nicest” which is the caveat…but from what I just saw I wouldn’t classify too many of those cars as “nice.”

  • Ryan Coleman

    Dodge Dart isnt in it??? Won tons of awards safer than most of these cars. When you put a Civic and a Prius in it I should have known it was a BS

  • Michael Diviak

    I thought the title of this article was the nicest 35+mpg cars. I don’t see how the POS of Prius C fits.

  • Joe Schmo

    Noticing the comment by G2 talking about not being impressed with the MPG on his Mazda 3. If you are driving 75MPH and it took 7 hours at that speed for your tank to run dry, I would say that is pretty impressive. I did the math and 7×75=525 miles on a small tank!

  • fuzzball

    Gas hogs at 35mpg. I get 42mpg on my 1991 Geo metro convertible. And It still can do 80mph on the Interstate but gets about 38mpg. That way when it is posted 70mph I can keep up with the traffic :-)