• <h4 class="dechead">On One Hand: Gas versus Hybrid

    Contrary to popular belief, there are fuel efficient SUV's that are both strictly gasoline and hybrid-gasoline. All of these are four cylinder models. Hybrids typically offer better miles per gallon (MPG) than gasoline models. Currently, the Ford Escape Hybrid, Mazda Tribute Hybrid, and Mercury Mariner Hybrid all have a fuel estimate of 34 MPG city/31 MPG highway. These three vehicles are all based on the same platform. The Lexus RX450h hybrid is the next most fuel-efficient car, with 32 city/28 highway MPG. The Jeep Compass is the most fuel-efficient non-hybrid car offered today. It achieves 23 city/29 highway MPG.

    On the Other: Performance versus Economy

    The bigger the engine size, or the greater the number of cylinders, means an increase in performance, with a decrease in fuel economy. The Ford, Mazda, Mercury, and Jeep have four cylinder engines. The Lexus has six cylinders. Currently, the most fuel efficient eight cylinder SUV is the Cadillac Escalade Hybrid, Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid, or GMC Yukon Hybrid.

    Bottom Line

    There are fuel efficient SUV's on the market today that will not break the bank at the gas pump. However, a consumer must decide if the added fuel efficiency is worth the decrease in performance.


    2010 Most and Least Fuel Efficient Trucks,Vans and SUVs EPA Size Classes

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