Top 25 Used Fuel-Efficient Cars

Gas mileage is important to car shoppers, so we've selected 25 used cars from the 2004-08 model years that are very fuel-efficient. They're ranked by highway gas mileage estimates, which have been adjusted using the EPA's current testing procedures.

Rank Model
1.
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Toyota Prius (2004-2008)

Highway MPG: 45
The Prius was redesigned for 2004 and has remained relatively unchanged since. Note the eight-year/100,000-mile warranty for the hybrid system. Safety-conscious shoppers should look for side curtain airbags.
2.
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Honda Civic Hybrid (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 42-45
The Civic was redesigned for 2006, when the hybrid's manual transmission was discontinued. Note the eight-year/80,000-mile warranty for the hybrid system. Since the 2006 model year, the Civic Hybrid has had standard side curtain airbags.
3.
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Honda Civic (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 34-39
Completely redesigned for 2006, the Civic is offered in coupe and sedan forms with identical mileage estimates, excluding the sporty Si trim level. Since the 2006 model year, the Civic has had standard side curtain airbags.
4.
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Toyota Corolla (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 34-37
Choose the manual transmission for the best mileage, excluding the sporty XRS trim level. Safety-conscious shoppers should consider models with side curtain airbags.
5.
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Toyota Camry Hybrid (2007-2008)

Highway MPG: 34
Both models are nearly identical, so there's no reason not to go with a 2007. Still one of the most comfortable hybrids on the road.
6.
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Honda Fit (2007-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 33-35
Manual and automatic versions get nearly identical gas mileage, but the manual is more fun to drive.
7.
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Scion xD (2008)

Highway MPG Range: 32-33
Manual version gets 1 mpg better mileage. This is the first year of the xD, which replaces the xA.
8.
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Nissan Versa (2007-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 31-33
The hatchback and sedan get identical mileage, with the continuously variable automatic transmission returning the best fuel economy.
9.
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Scion xB (2004-2006)

Highway MPG Range: 30-32
Manual and automatic versions get nearly identical mileage. A standard stability system is a safety plus, but side curtain airbags aren't offered.
10.
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Mini Cooper (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 29-37
Mini changed the four-cylinder engine in the Cooper hardtop for 2007, which improved gas mileage. Older base models are still very efficient with either an automatic or manual transmission.
11.
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Pontiac Vibe (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 29-33
Base models get the best mileage, versus all-wheel-drive and GT models.
12.
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Toyota Matrix (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 29-33
All-wheel-drive and sportier XRS models are offered, but base models get the best mileage.
13.
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Ford Focus (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 28-35
There have been various body styles for the Focus over the years, but most get identical mileage — excluding sporty SVT versions.
14.
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Acura RSX (2004-2006)

Highway MPG Range: 28-31
This efficient luxury coupe boasts Acura reliability and torso protection from side-impact airbags for the front seats. Choose the base model over the Type-S to get the best mileage.
15.
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Toyota Avalon (2005-2007)

Highway MPG: 28
The only full-size car to meet the minimum mileage criterion, the Avalon is a comfortable, reliable sedan with standard side curtain airbags.
16.
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Hyundai Sonata (2006-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 27-31
The Sonata has historically been well-equipped for the money, and its generous warranty should entice used-car buyers. The four-cylinder has a significant mileage advantage over the V-6.
17.
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Acura TSX (2004-2007)

Highway MPG Range: 27-29
The first-generation TSX combines sportiness with good mileage and standard safety gear like side curtain airbags and a stability system.
18.
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Scion tC (2007)

Highway MPG Range: 27-29
The two-door Scion tC offers the pluses for which parent company Toyota is known in a sportier form than the Corolla compact. Automatic models get better mileage.
19.
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Volkswagen GTI (2004-2007)

Highway MPG Range: 27-29
The GTI is a pocket rocket — a small car tuned for performance. Combining its great driving with efficiency, it's the only car of its kind to make this list.
20.
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Mazda3 (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 26-32
In the affordable compact car class, the Mazda3 may be the most fun to drive. The top mileage comes with the base 2.0-liter engine and a manual transmission, but the automatic is only 1 mpg behind.
21.
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Honda Accord (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 26-31
Four-cylinder, manual-transmission Accords offer the best mileage. Side curtain airbags became standard for 2005 but were optional for 2004.
22.
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Toyota Camry (2004-2008)

Highway MPG Range: 26-31
An especially well-rounded car, the four-cylinder Camry's gas mileage is similar with either the manual or automatic transmission. Side airbags were optional until 2007.
23.
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Ford Escape Hybrid (2005-2007)

Highway MPG Range: 26-29
Thanks to its exceptional mileage, the Escape Hybrid is the only SUV to make this list. Safety-conscious buyers should look for models with side curtain airbags, which were optional from 2005 to 2007.
24.
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Volkswagen Eos (2007)

Highway MPG Range: 26-29
The retractable-hardtop Eos is the only convertible to meet our mileage criterion, when equipped with its base four-cylinder engine. It's also a fun car with standard side airbags and good crash-test ratings.
25.
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Audi A3 (2006-2007)

Highway MPG Range: 25-29
The diminutive A3 hatchback combines sportiness, luxury and efficiency into a single package. Skip the Quattro all-wheel-drive system to get better mileage.
© Cars.com 11/14/08