October 12, 2004

Most fuel-efficient cars announced by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Washington, D.C. – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released their 2005 fuel economy ratings last week, and the overall winner for the sixth straight year is the gasoline/electric hybrid Honda Insight. The manual transmission Insight gets (U.S.) 61 mpg city and 66 mpg highway (3.9 and 3.6 l/100 km), while the automatic version gets slightly lower gas mileage (57 city/56 highway)(4.1 and 4.2 l/100 km).

Hybrid vehicles take the top spots in the Two Seater (Honda Insight), Compact Car (Honda Civic Hybrid), Midsize Car (Toyota Prius), and SUV (Ford Escape HEV) classes. Volkswagen’s diesels also score well in 2005, claiming the top spots for fuel efficiency in the Subcompact Car (New Beetle), Small Station Wagon (Jetta Wagon), and Midsize Station Wagon (Passat Wagon) classes.

Recent news stories have raised questions about how EPA develops its fuel economy ratings and the accuracy of those ratings. To help answer these questions, the EPA has added a new page “EPA Fuel Economy Ratings” at www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/ratings_description.shtml. This new page features sections on which vehicles are tested, how vehicles are tested, fuel economy test schedules, and laboratory vs. real-world mpg.

For a complete list of “Best and Worst in Class” vehicles, see www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/bestworst.shtml.

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