April 4, 2011
2011 Honda CR-Z; 2011 Ford Fiesta; Honda Civic Hybrid; Toyota Prius; Honda Accord; Hyundai Sonata; photos by Chris Chase. Click image to enlarge
By Paul Williams
A handy resource for Canadian drivers looking for a more fuel-efficient vehicle comes courtesy of the federal “EcoENERGY” program which has tested vehicles for fuel efficiency since 1999. Its data is available at their web site (with its consumer unfriendly URL http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca) for each of those years. Consumers can consult their research to get reliable comparative information when selecting a new or used vehicle.
For 2011, vehicles are divided into ten categories, and an amount is estimated that represents an owner’s annual fuel cost based on an expected 20,000 kilometres with a mix of 55 per cent city driving and 45 per cent highway driving. Unfortunately, the price of fuel is not consumer-selectable on the government website, currently underestimating fuel costs by 15 per cent (and climbing!).
Something else to note is that an Excise Tax is applied to fuel inefficient vehicles that ranges from $1,000 to $4,000. Most of these vehicles, however are in the luxury or sports performance categories, and wouldn’t apply to purchases by mainstream Canadian consumers.
Each year, the EcoENERGY program identifies Canada’s most fuel efficient vehicles, and announces awards at the Toronto auto show. Based on these awards, Canada’s most fuel-efficient vehicles for 2011 are as follows:
Power: 1.5L gasoline electric hybrid
Fuel consumption: 5.6L/100km city – 5.0L/100km highway
All-new for 2011, the Honda CR-Z is a sporty two-seat hatchback available with a six-speed manual or continuously variable automatic transmission.
Power: 1.6L gasoline
Fuel consumption: 6.8L/100km city – 4.9L/100km highway
All-new for 2011, the Ford Fiesta is a four-door sedan or hatchback available with a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission.
Honda Civic Hybrid
Power: 1.3L gasoline electric hybrid
Fuel consumption: 4.7L/100km city – 4.3L/100km highway
The 2011 Honda Civic Hybrid is a four-door sedan that first introduced in 2003, with an all-new model debuting in 2006. It features a continuously variable automatic transmission.
Power: 1.8L, gasoline electric hybrid
Fuel consumption: 3.7L/100km city – 4.0L/100km highway
The 2011 Toyota Prius is unchanged from 2010, when it was redesigned into its third generation. It’s a five-seat hatchback with useful cargo capacity. The transmission is a continuously variable automatic.
Honda Accord Sedan
Power: 2.4L gasoline
Fuel consumption: 8.8/100km city – 5.8L/100km highway
Generously equipped even in base SE form, and mildly face-lifted for 2011, the Honda Accord Sedan arrives with a five-speed manual transmission or five-speed automatic.