Motoring Experts Reveal the Best Cars for Fuel-Efficiency and How to Drive More for Less

As the cost of fuel continues to rise, many drivers across the country will be looking for ways to trim the cost of fuel consumption.

To help you navigate fuel efficiency as a car owner, Lucy Sherliker, head of customer at B-Corp accredited Zuto car finance, and Matthew Briggs, CEO at fuel card provider Right Fuel Card provide their recommendations.

Matthew explains: “Fuel costs are suffering the highest increase so far this year, so it’s more important than ever to ensure that you’re getting the best price for your fuel. By using tools such as a petrol station finder, you can plan your route in advance, which will help you identify cheaper fuel stations along your journey. Drivers can also use a cost-effective fuel card to pay for their fuel.”

What are the best car models for fuel efficiency?

Lucy says: “As a general rule of thumb, a MPG of 40–50 is considered good, but the higher the number, the better. To calculate the MPG of your current car, set your trip counter to zero and start driving. Once you’ve completed the journey, divide the miles by the amount of fuel used, and then multiply this result by 4.546 (the number of litres in a gallon).

“If you’re on the market for a more economical vehicle, as a classic option, the Toyota Prius 1.8 VVT-I Active Auto has a very impressive 63 mpg for its range. This makes the Toyota Prius one of the most efficient cars on the market. Another good choice is the Citroen C2 1.6 BlueHDi Feel 100hp, which does 62 mpg. Other good options include the classic Peugeot 108, Citroen C1 and Fiat 500, thanks to their compact design.” 

Switching your current car through car finance to a more fuel-efficient model can be a good option, but there are simple ways to improve your MPG in the meantime.

How to be more a fuel-efficient car owner?

Drive as smoothly as possible

Lucy says: “Smooth driving is the number one tip for improved fuel-efficiency. This means avoiding any sudden or rapid acceleration and braking wherever possible. General speed is also important. The more pressure you apply to the pedals, the more fuel you’re using. Driving at a steady pace will help improve your overall MGP.”

Matthew adds: “The most fuel-efficient and cost-effective way to tackle fluctuating fuel costs  is ‘hypermiling’, also known as eco-driving. This method can be used in gasoline and diesel vehicles and can also improve the efficiency of hybrid and electric vehicles.

“Put simply, hypermiling is achieved by maintaining the momentum of your vehicle by choosing direct routes that require the least amount of acceleration and braking possible. It’s been reported that this technique could save drivers up to 40%, a very appealing tactic for drivers looking to cut fuel costs.”

Remove any unnecessary items from your car

Lucy explains: “Lightening the load of your vehicle is another effective way to increase your MPG. By keeping your car full of unneeded items or always having a roof rack attached, your car engine is forced to work harder, resulting in fuel being burned at a quicker rate.”

Keep the heating and air conditioning to a minimum

Lucy adds: “Try to avoid unnecessary use of the air conditioning and heating system when driving, opting for an extra layer where appropriate. Air conditioning puts an added strain on the engine, which can easily be avoided. However, if you’re driving at faster speeds and need to reduce car temperature, keep the windows closed and turn the air conditioning on, helping to reduce drag of the vehicle.”

Check your tyres

Lucy advises: “Having the right tyre pressure is key for road safety, but also plays a role when it comes to fuel-efficiency. The lower your tyre pressure, the more fuel your car requires to keep them turning. So if your tyres are feeling slightly deflated, make sure to give them a quick pump next time you use your car.”