The Most Fuel Efficient SUV's of 2011: 6 Models with High MPG

March 18, 2013

The most fuel efficient SUV list includes some hybrids, as well as some gasoline models. Hybrid technology is just starting to infiltrate the SUV market, and it has produced some great results so far. SUVs used to barely get above 20 miles per gallon, and now hybrid technology has been able to increase those numbers by more than 50 percent. Here are some of the top models with the highest SUV gas mileage.

Ford Escape Hybrid and Mazda Tribute

These two models are all very similar. They happen to be the most fuel efficient SUVs out there, with the best MPG for SUVs. Each model comes with a 4 cylinder 2.5 liter engine, which is not the best for an SUV. However, for the increased fuel efficiency benefits, you have to give a little to get something. There isn't too much power lost with these engines though, since there is also an electric motor to add some extra power. These models can get 34 miles per gallon on the highway and 31 miles per gallon in the city, for a combined rating of 32 mpg. These models have the lowest average fuel cost of $1,277 per year. The next closest model is more than $100 more, meaning you save two to three tanks of gas per year at a minimum. The carbon footprint of these models are 5.8 tons of carbon dioxide, which is about half as much as typical gasoline SUVs. The models that get the highest ratings are the 2WD transmissions, but they also come with 4WD. They do get a little lower ratings, but would still be on top with 30 miles per gallon on the highway and 27 miles per gallon in the city, for a combined rating of 29 mpg.

Toyota Highlander

The next SUV on the list is the Toyota Highlander. It can get 28 miles per gallon on the highway and in the city. It has a fuel cost of approximately $1,460 dollars in a year. It's carbon footprint is still a respectable 6.7 tons of carbon dioxide. The more impressive part is that it comes with a 3.5 liter V6 engine. Those numbers are based on the 4WD model.

Mitsubishi Outlander

The Outlander is also a newcomer to this list for 2011. It comes in 2WD and 4WD formats. The 2WD model gets 31 miles per gallon on the highway and 25 miles per gallon in the city, for a combined rating of 27 mpg. The 4WD model gets 29 miles per gallon on the highway and 24 miles per gallon in the city, for a combined rating of 26 mpg. Fuel costs jump into the $1,550 range, and the Outlander has a carbon footprint of 7.2 tons of carbon dioxide.

Hyundai Tucson

The Hyundai Tucson just beats out the top 3 models listed above (Escape and Tribute) in their non hybrid forms. The Tucson gets 31 miles per gallon on the highway, but only 23 miles per gallon in the city for a combined rating of 26 mpg.

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