Toyota Prius tops 2011 EPA fuel economy ratings


The Environmental Protection Agency has just released its first Fuel Economy Guide for the new class of 2011. As in 2010, top mileage-maxing honors went to the virtually carryover 2011 Toyota Prius, which was awarded EPA city/highway marks of 51/48 mpg. Tied for second on the overall fuel-miser scale was the Honda Civic Hybrid and Insight, which each logged 40/43 mpg stats. On the guzzler front, the Bugatti Veyron also reprised its 2010 super-swiller performance by locking in 8/15 mpg numbers. As expected, the EPA continues to struggle with finding a suitable equivalency formula to use when rating the new Nissan LEAF EV and Chevrolet Volt E-REV, both of which remain in the netherworld of "NA."

The EPA's annual mileage compilation also cited various best-in-category winners. In addition to the Honda CR-Z (35/39 mpg with the CVT) in the two-seater class, the aforementioned Civic Hybrid/Insight in the compact realm and the Toyota Prius among the mid-size set, other victors on the car side included the Mini Cooper (28/37 mpg) in minicompact and Ford Fiesta SFE (29/40 mpg) in subcompact while the Hyundai Sonata (24/35 mpg) was the econo champ of the large cars.

In the in the small wagon category it was a two-way tie for top honors between turbodiesel versions of the Audi A3 and Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagon, both sharing 30/42 mpg numbers. Rolling off with laurels among mid-size wagons was the Kia Rondo (20/27 mpg). Three closely related models headed the EPA's sport utility vehicle category, with front-drive versions of the Ford Escape Hybrid, Mazda Tribute Hybrid and Mercury Mariner Hybrid each netting 34/31 mpg marks. The Ford Ranger RWD (22/27 mpg) earned the best ratings among all small pickup trucks while the Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid and its GMC Sierra Hybrid in both RWD/4WD (20/23 mpg) configurations topped the standard pickup truck class and the all-new Honda Odyssey (19/28 mpg) copped most fuel-efficient minivan honors.

To see a complete listing of EPA numbers for all new cars, trucks, SUV and vans, visit www.fueleconomy.gov .

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