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Jeremycw1's avatar

All-time most efficient cars?

Asked by Jeremycw1 (1357 points ) May 19th, 2011

Ok so I know that there are older cars out there that can definitely beat newer hybrids in the efficiency category. For example, my buddy’s 1981 Volkswagen Rabbit Diesel gets around 50 MPG… way better than most “hybrids” on the road today. Do you know of any older vehicle that can beat today’s hybrids in efficiency? I’m very interested to hear your responses!

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11 Answers

WestRiverrat's avatar

I had a 3 cylinder Sprint that got about 55 mpg. Best trip I did with it was 316 miles on 3.9 gal of gas, but I had a good tail wind that day.

ragingloli's avatar

The Volkswagen XL1 with 313 mpg (according to VW). It is not out yet, but they plan to do a limited production run in 2013.

It is quite pretty, too.

lillycoyote's avatar

My 1997 totally non-hybrid Nissan Sentra averaged 35mpg which is better than or comparable to some of the hybrids I’ve seen on the market, without the advanced technology, the price tag and the hype.

ETpro's avatar

It’s gotta be this. Infinite MPG. The only limit is how long your legs last. :-)

ETpro's avatar

@RocketGuy Ha! Same idea. Proves we’ve been going backwards in fuel efficiency.

King_Pariah's avatar

My Dad can pull off 28–30 mpg in his F-250, I haven’t seen another truck of the same class that can pull off anything similar to that.

King_Pariah's avatar

@ragingloli but it looks so… puny.

jerv's avatar

I think that early-80s VWs (those based on the A1 chassis) in general do well. My buddy had a non-diesel Jetta that got around 50MPG when he didn’t drive like a jackass or around 37 when he drove normally. Sadly, that all changed with the A2 :(

The Japanese Kei cars do better than many things you see outside of Japan, though the export versions often get larger engines and never make it to the US where we all must drive around in a 7-seater with built-in DVD players and a 6-inch lift kit.

And then there are rigs like the White Zombie that can run ¼-mile in under 10.3 seconds, do 0–60 in under 2, and don’t use a drop of gas to do so.

Jeremycw1's avatar

@ragingloli I was just reading about that in motor trend! It looks like a pretty neat car.

john65pennington's avatar

My 2000 Toyota Solara constantly gets 31 mpg. It has 275,000 miles on it and its just getting started. I am shooting for 500,000 miles.

Your question asked “most efficent vehicle”. So, I am assuming you also mean from a mechanical standpoint, also.

My Solara has only had its timing belt changed and 6 sets of tires. I change the oil every 7,000 miles and use only Castrol oil, since day one. I never buy cheap gasoline, like Swifty or some other unknown brand.

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