Best Gas Mileage You Can Get: Top 10 Hybrids Page 2

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2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

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6) 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid - 45 mpg
42 mpg city, 48 mpg highway, from $24,995

"VW" and "gas mileage" in the same sentence used to be the preserve of diesels--but not any more. The Jetta Hybrid has pulled the carpet from under its TDI brother, with 45 mpg combined economy and an impressive 48 highway. VW is proud of how it drives too--touting the "Sure it's a hybrid. But it's a turbo hybrid" tag-line in its advertising. The 1.4 turbocharged engine certainly offers decent performance.

NOTE: The 2013 Honda Civic Hybrid is rated at 44 mpg combined, so it would logically fall into the list here. We omitted it from this article because fuel efficiency ratings had not been listed on the EPA website at the time the piece was published.

7) 2013 Toyota Prius V - 42 mpg
44 mpg city, 40 mpg highway, from $26,650

Prius fans wanting a bit more practicality do have to drop a few mpg to get there, but the Prius V still makes for a practical, usable family vehicle. 40 mpg on the highway shouldn't be sniffed at either.

8) 2013 Lexus CT 200h - 42 mpg
43 mpg city, 40 mpg highway, from $32,050

Under the skin, the CT 200h isn't that dissimilar from a Prius. The edgy bodywork and a few tweaks mean it isn't quite as efficient, but it's more sporty to drive than the Prius and that Lexus badge on the front will count for a lot too. The real-world economy difference isn't as large as the EPA figures suggest, either.

2013 Honda Insight

2013 Honda Insight

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9) 2013 Honda Insight - 42 mpg
41 mpg city, 44 mpg highway, from $18,600

Compare the 2013 Insight to its early-2000s predecessor and it seems to have lost its mojo--it's heavier, less efficient and not as fun to drive. it's more practical though, and the cheapest hybrid car on sale. It still corners better than a Prius too, even if it isn't as comfortable--or fuel-efficient. A redesign in 2012 freshened up the looks a little.

10) 2013 Toyota Camry Hybrid LE - 41 mpg
43 mpg city, 39 mpg highway, from $26,140

Yet another Toyota makes it on to the list. The Camry Hybrid was recently updated, but that official EPA figure looks a bit old-hat next to the Fusion Hybrid. It's cheaper though, so you'll get a few miles of fuel with the difference.


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Comments (29)
  1. DIESELS...DIESELS...DIESELS!!! I get up to 70 mpg on the freeway, and average 45 mpg city/highway in my Golf TDI. Like Kelly Johnson once said, "Keep it simple, stupid!!"

  2. I'll disagree strongly here. There's not a diesel in the world that gets 70 MPG in either real world or in EPA testing. Numerous automotive magazines test drive these cars with professional drivers yet you're claiming you get "up to" about 55% more than anyone else achieved. I call nonsense to that claim.

    Diesels may be a small part of the emissions debate, but they'll never be able to compete in emissions, which is really the concern in the end, in addition to the limited supplies of gasoline and diesel fuel. Your diesel emissions and mileage don't even compare to my Volt or my wife's Prius and that doesn't even take into account the much worse nature of the diesel particulate emissions.

    Diesels are not the answer overall.

  3. Fyi, Passat TDI's milleage record is 84 mpg.

  4. Absolutely meaningless in this context; you're comparing specific results from an EPA test to a completely different test, I believe. The Passat TDI does nothing even remotely close to 84 on the EPA tests, which are the results shown for every other vehicle here. The Prius gets 51 MPG in the US EPS tests but 71, I believe it is on the European testing cycle. Should I then take that 71 number & claim how much better it is than the Passat TDI's results on the U.S. EPA tests? Of course not.
    If you care to show the actual results, thank you. But no comparing different tests and cycles and then choosing data that you prefer when it's not valid. Compare the Passat TDI's EPA results with the Prius, C-MAX, Insight and other hybrids' EPA results.

  5. This is what you said: "There's not a diesel in the world that gets 70 MPG in either real world..."

    No matter how meaningless you claim it is, the reality is you did not google before you said something incorrectly. Denying a fact already known by public does not help.

    I own a Prius and much impressed by its fuel economy. I did not compare anything except pointing out the fact it is possible for a diesel car to achieve high mileage.

  6. Frank, you've apparently missed my point completely, so I'll explain again. No matter what clean diesel you drive, a PHEV will generally have lower emissions. Your Prius gets about 50 MPG, the Passat & Jetta TDIs get 45 and my Volt has averaged 134 MPG thus far. Even taking into account the mix used to generate the electricity, even clean diesels produce more emissions. It's really that simple.

    Compare them with the same test or in real world driving, stop trying to use European test results when the test cycle is not the same, as I suspect you already know. The list here is based on every vehicle on the same EPA test. Where exactly do the clean diesels rank in mileage and emissions again? Where's the one that gets somewhere close to 135?

  7. Furthermore, Frank, the 70 MPG of which you speak is by drivers out to set a record and not driving anything near normally. It's a ridiculous comparison. Should I do the same and drive my Volt on only electric power and then claim infinity for my mileage?

    Car and Driver got only 42 MPG in the real world after driving a Passat TDI in real world conditions with real typical driving.

    The fact remains that 70 MPG is not relevant here since you're comparing unnatural driving methods that 99% of drivers will not replicate. Driving far below the speed limit, for example, as Randall advocates. In many locations, driving 10+ under the speed limit is illegal. Note the minimum speeds listed in many places. But again, very atypical driving.

  8. Set the cruise on 50 mph on flat ground on the interstate, and 60 mpg to 70 mpg magically appears. No coasting required. If I was getting the EPA rated mpg, I would drop it off at the repair shop because something would be wrong with it.

  9. So drive completely differently than a real world driver would...? Yes, that would make the numbers pretty much meaningless. Obviously, a hybrid driver could cherrypick locations and circumstances, too, and drive the mileage up in the same manner. Should we all drive our hybrids down mountains and use the regenerative braking to skew the results as you have?

    Driving 50 MPH in a 70 MPH zone is gaming your results and not even close to legal as well.

  10. Staying out of the left and middle lane doesn't piss too many people off, and it is legal. It isn't skewing to take full advantage of the fuel economy of the car. Given where I live, I don't have any choice but to drive on flat terrain. I see Prius owners hauling ass in the left hand lane all the time. What's the point in buying a Prius if you aren't going to take advantage of the fuel economy. I have a strong suspicion that most people buy Priuses to feel better about themselves, not for the fuel economy.

  11. @robok2,

    And I strongly disagree with your assertion that diesel particulate emissions are "much worse" than either a Prius or a Volt.

    There have been some recent studies that have shown the particle emissions from hybrids (including Prius) are actually worse than the conventional gas version in the real world in spite of the fact that the engine is off a significant portion of the duty cycle. Apparently particle emissions during restarts more than make up for the time the hybrid's engine is off.

    Meanwhile, diesels with particle filters (DPF) have particle emissions than are essentially indistinguishable from HEPA-filtered background air based on many studies.

  12. Well, I haven't seen any of those so called studies yet. But grouping Prius with Volt is silly in this case. Volt "barely" use gas most of the time. How is that going to make it worse. Not to mention that diesel functions even worse when it is cold. Sure, filters will help remove some of that particulates. But it doesn't remove the excess HC, NOx and CO that diesel generates.

  13. Well, in the first place, I never said that either the Volt or the Prius was "worse" (at least not significantly worse) than new-technology diesel. I'm just disputing that NTD is "much worse" than either with respect to particulate emissions that the previous commenter asserted.

    As far as HC, NOx, and CO, diesel engines have ALWAYS generated less HC and CO emissions (lean burn), and either catalysts or urea-SCR are currently used to control NOx emissions.

    Also, you need to consider the upstream emissions of electric generation in the case of the Volt. PM emissions are very high where much of the electric generation is from coal.

  14. @Loren Marz

    By your reasoning, then all the numbers listed in the or fuel must be wrong then? B/c none of your so called clean diesel can be as low as either Prius or Volt (with AT-PZEV). In fact, none of the clean diesel can meet California's PZEV emission level.

    As far as your arguement of "upstream" emission goes, that is a tried and tired arguement. Where I live, coal accounts for less than 20% of the general electricity generation. In fact, my county is mostly Geo-thermal based. I have solar on my house and I charge at work as well under a 1MW solar installation.

    That is why Volt is great b/c it allows you to offset your energy source where "diesel" can't.

  15. Yes, I'm saying the EPA (actually CARB) is misleading with respect to emission categories like PZEV, etc.

    They're based on artificial cutoffs of individual emissions in an unrealistic duty cycle (FTP). It also includes only exhaust emissions and doesn't include upstream emissions of the respective fuels (gasoline is much higher in VOC emissions due to its volatility).

    And again, I was disputing the diesels are "much worse" in particle emissions than either the Volt or Prius. The Volt has higher well-to-wheels PM emissions even at 20% coal generation and PZEV has the same PM emission limit (0.01 g/mi) as "just" LEV or ULEV.

  16. There are more comments in this thread
  17. Efficiency won't solve our energy problems. We need alternatives. Plug-ins routinely get hundreds of miles per gallon.

  18. What alternative energy does your plug-in use? I know it isn't "alternative". 95% of electricity does not come from "alternative" sources. Why do we NEED alternatives?

  19. Randall Smith says: "Why do we NEED alternatives?"

    Because peak oil is real.

  20. Yes, but when it happens depends on who you ask. Again...your plug-in is NOT using alternative resources.

  21. Alternatives sources can be installed by the individual. I installed solar and I charge my Volt on it. At work, my employer installed 1MW solar and we charge on that... So, you can do something to offset that.

    Even if it is from fossil fuel, it is far easily to clean up a concentrated source such as powerplants than a million cars. 1 million EVs driving 40 miles per day will only add about 0.38% load to the existing grid. That can be easily offset by "alternative" energy sources.

  22. Alternatives from oil, absolutely:

    And in 2013 that is more renewables, more nat. gas, and less coal.


  24. There are more comments in this thread
  25. Our 2009 Prius gets from 45 to 50 MPG depending on gas quality.
    I found one fuel brand that is dependable and always provides 50 MPG. The brand is Country Mark refined in Mt Vernon Indiana.
    I don't think the fuel that we get local ever hits the pipeline. Direct from refinery to the station via tanker. That may be the reason it gives a constant MPG.

  26. Shouldn't Civic Hybrid be number 8, bumping the Camry from the list?

  27. *7

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