Aerodynamics are key to electric vehicle (EV) efficiency and driving range. The basic principle is simple; the lower the coefficient of drag (cD), the further you can travel per charge. The slickest cars follow nature. A bird that’s shaped like a brick cannot fly. Unfortunately, electric vehicle aerodynamics have taken a back seat to the whims of the market. In the quarter century since the introduction of the General Motors EV1, it’s 0.19 cD remains unrivaled.
There’s a new leader on top of the pickup truck gas mileage charts for 2022 and it’s a solid deal, straight off the lot … if you can find one.
This post takes a run through the most fuel-efficient trucks with internal combustion engines, listing the highest scoring drivetrains for each model first, followed by the less-efficient configurations. It’s worth noting that there are still two pickups offered with manual transmissions in America.
Ford Maverick Pickup
When Ford rolled out the Maverick Hybrid they didn’t just catch the world by surprise. The company proved a point that the industry didn’t want to admit (publicly). There really is a market for small capable pickup trucks with excellent gas mileage! If your family can only own one vehicle, an affordable and economical pickup is a solid choice.
Vehicle subscription services offer a compelling alternative to traditional ownership, leasing, and rental. They are useful in situations that prevent long-term commitment. Think of it as an in-betweener for those times when a traditional rental is too expensive and a lease is too burdensome. Need a car for a month or two (maybe six)? A subscription might be right for you. The primary differentiators between car subscription plans include service areas, monthly costs, upfront fees, mileage limits, flexibility, and vehicles offered. A slew of companies have launched in recent years and the marketplace is evolving rapidly.
Deciding which cheap new car to purchase can be a daunting task. It’s crucial to take your time, do your research, and look at the big picture. While we are largely focused on fuel economy here at MPGomatic, your purchase decision will include a range of considerations. The process can be highly emotional. The car you like best, might not make the most financial sense, for any number of reasons. If the car you fall in love with turns into a money pit, the honeymoon won’t last long.
Kelly Blue Book (KBB) crunched the numbers to determine 2018’s least expensive new cars “based on a full buy-drive-sell ownership cycle” (not just the purchased price). While some folks are most concerned with the monthly payment, the most important factors in KBB’s calculations include initial cost, finance rates, and five-year depreciation, as well as fuel costs. These are KBB’s picks’ not our favorites.
All of the vehicles on the list use conventional gasoline engines. Some worthy compacts and subcompacts oddly didn’t land on the list (including the Corolla, Yaris, Civic, Mazda3, Focus, and Fiesta) and there are no hybrid or diesel models due to the higher sticker prices. It comes as no surprise that all of the vehicles are front-wheel-drive. We’ll run through the list by order of fuel economy and include KBB’s listing order at the end of the article.
Once upon a time, exceptional fuel economy and all-wheel-drive (AWD) were mutually exclusive automotive attributes. But with today’s highly efficient hybrid, turbo-diesel, and conventional drivetrains it’s a whole new ballgame. As the song goes, the times, they are a changing, and forty miles per gallon (MPG) on the highway is a reality if you choose a diesel-powered vehicle.
Let’s take a look at the ten most fuel-efficient AWD vehicles of 2018.