With fuel costs reaching record highs, our attention naturally turns to fuel efficiency, especially if you’re in the market for a new car.
If you’re not yet convinced that electric is the way to go, buying the most frugal car you can is the next best thing.
Fortunately, there’s plenty of choice.
A wide range of models from leading manufacturers that deliver good value, a balance between power and efficiency and enough practicality for most uses.
Plus, you don’t have to buy a small car to buy an economical car. There are other options, as our list demonstrates.
That list includes:
The Peugeot 208 is one of the best looking cars on the road. It has a genuine road presence with a bold front end, that signature Peugeot grille, LED lighting and some nice design flourishes.
It’s a stylish small car with a nice interior, well equipped dashboard, a smart 3D display and lots of safety tech. Space isn’t bad either, with room for four and some luggage in back.
The 1.5 BlueHDi 100PS probably isn’t your first choice of engine, but if it’s fuel efficiency you’re looking for, this will get you a claimed 71.4 MPG.
The Renault Clio is another small car with a big presence. One of the longest running small cars on the market, this has been around since forever.
The design has moved with the times though. The new model looks current and offers a great look. Interiors are high quality and well put together and offer decent levels of technology too.
The 1.5-litre dCi engine is the one to go for if efficiency is your priority. With its claimed 67.2 MPG. It’s no slouch either, which definitely helps.
The Citroën C3 is a mainstay of the lineup and delivers a safe, predictable drive without being boring. The styling is great, quality top notch and you’ll never be embarrassed to be seen in one either.
Build quality is first rate with some nice flourishes within the cabin. It can seat four in comfort and can be specified with plenty of technology too.
You’ll want the 1.5-litre BlueHDi engine for maximum mileage, which should give you 67 MPG. It’s the same engine as in the Peugeot 208 and is a great little motor.
The Dacia Sandero is not only cheap to buy, it’s also cheap to run. Cheap insurance, frugal engines and low cost servicing are exactly what we need right now when everything is increasing in price.
The new design Sandero looks the part with the new grille and lights. The overall design is much nicer to look at and be looked at in. The interior has gone up a notch or two as well, which just adds to the experience.
While not as frugal as some of these others at 53 MPG for the TCe 90, the combination of low cost everything makes this a must-try.
The Ford Fiesta is an excellent small car that delivers everything you could possibly need. It’s a classic for good reason and whether you’re a new driver or much more established, it will never leave you wanting.
The design is modern and friendly with practical dimensions and a surprisingly spacious boot. While the interior may be a little stark, it’s put together well and delivers a satisfying experience.
For maximum mileage, go for the Fiesta 1.5 TDCi 85PS. It delivers 60.1 MPG without having to compromise on fun factor too much.
The Kia Niro is closer to a standard family car size, yet achieves up to 60 MPG. The design is rounded and friendly, with the tiger nose grille and angled lights giving it a very approachable look.
Inside, there’s room for four and luggage. Finishing is of a high quality with comfortable seats, soft touch materials, practical storage options and lots of tech.
Buyers will want to aim for the 1.6 GDI Hybrid model for maximum mileage. That will give you the 58.9 MPG you’re looking for.
There’s a good reason you see so many Toyota Prius working as taxis. Because they are so reliable and so very, very efficient.
Despite being the butt of many eco-jokes, you’ll have the last laugh in one of these.
The design is still quirky, but more mainstream than it used to be. Interior quality is high, the cabin is comfortable and spacious and delivers on technology too.
Thanks to a very efficient petrol-hybrid drivetrain, you’ll get around 68.35 MPG, which isn’t a bad return.
Economical motoring in 2022
Not everyone wants, or can practically own, an electric car. Yet we all want to still do our bit for the planet while minimising running costs as much as possible.
That’s where these economical cars come in. Standard or hybrid engines that don’t need charging points are still very practical and won’t give you range anxiety.
Just what you need in uncertain times, don’t you think?