Ranked

Ranked: 20 SUVs with the best gas mileage

A wide variety of vehicles makes up the list of the most fuel-efficient SUVs sold in the U.S.

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Shopping for a new SUV can be a chore. There's a lot to consider. Two or three rows? Small, medium, midsize, large? Hybrid or traditional powertrain?

When searching for a new SUV, buyers will often compare their fuel efficiency. The models on this list have the best combined gas mileage of any SUVs on the market today. The list consists of traditional internal combustion engine vehicles and hybrids. No plug-in hyrbids or all-electric models were considered. Scroll down to see all 20.

Click here to learn more about fuel efficiency.

2020 Ford EcoSport

2020 Ford EcoSport

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company‚Äč

27 mpg in the city/29 mpg on the highway
Most consider the Ford EcoSport to be underpowered for the American market but, that helps with its fuel efficiency. It comes standard with a 123-horsepower turbocharged 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine.

2020 Nissan Rogue Sport

2020 Nissan Rogue Sport

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

25 mpg in the city/32 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Nissan Rogue Sport is celebrating just its third year in the U.S. As an international offering, it doesn't have the type of horsepower that will excite speedy U.S. drivers, but makes sense for markets with lower speed limits. It gets its power from a 141-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with a continuously variable transmission.

2020 Mazda CX-30

2020 Mazda CX-30

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

25 mpg in the city/33 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Mazda CX-30 is the newest member of the Japanese automaker's family. The model comes standard with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 186 horsepower and 186 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired with an automatic transmission. The model is most fuel-efficient as a front-wheel drive crossover. All-wheel drive is available and when equipped it's competent off-road.

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLA

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

24 mpg in the city/34 mpg in the city
In its last year before a complete redesign, the Mercedes-Benz GLA continues to return good fuel economy numbers. It is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and achieves 208 horsepower.

2020 Toyota CH-R

2020 Toyota CH-R

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

27 mpg in the city/31 mpg on the highway
The front-wheel drive 2020 Toyota CH-R is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 144 horsepower and 139 pound-feet of torque.

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman

Photo courtesy of MINI

26 mpg in the city/33 mpg on the highway
With its unmistakable Mini looks, the 2020 Cooper Countryman is instantly recognizable as being from the House that Cooper Built. The model's most fuel efficient engine is its standard turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder that produces 134 horsepower.

2020 Subaru Crosstrek

2020 Subaru Crosstrek

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

27 mpg in the city/33 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek is known for its competence. Despite having standard all-wheel drive, the model is one of the most fuel-efficient SUVs out there. It gets its power from a 152-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. The Crosstrek comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission. Upgrade to the continuously variable transmission for more fuel efficiency.

2020 Hyundai Kona

2020 Hyundai Kona

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

27 mpg in the city/33 mpg on the highway
The two power plants buyers can get in the 2020 Hyundai Kona have nearly the same fuel economy numbers. The car comes standard with a 147-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder that is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. Buyers can choose to upgrade to a 175-horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

2020 Toyota RAV4

2020 Toyota RAV4

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

26 mpg in the city/35 mpg on the highway
Even without its hybrid powertrain, the 2020 Toyota RAV4 is fuel-efficient. It comes standard with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 203 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. The SUV's powertrain is complete with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

2020 Honda HR-V

2020 Honda HR-V

American Honda Motor Co., Inc

28 mpg in the city/34 mpg on the highway
The front-wheel drive version of the 2020 Honda HR-V is most fuel-efficient. Each HR-V is powered by a 141 horsepower 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with continuously variable automatic transmission.

2020 Mazda CX-3

2020 Mazda CX-3

Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

29 mpg in the city/34 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Mazda CX-3 has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine under its hood. The engine is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and achieves 148 horsepower.

2020 Hyundai Venue

30 mpg in the city/34 mpg on the highway/32 combined
The 2020 Hyundai Venue is the newest model inn the automaker's lineup and it's one of the most fuel-efficient. The zippy Venue has a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that achieves 121 horsepower and 113 pound-feet of torque. It comes standard with a six-speed manual transmission but is more fuel-efficient with a continuously variable transmission.

2020 Lexus UX

2020 Lexus UX

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

29 mpg in the city/37 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Lexus UX is nearly as fuel efficient as the UX Hybrid. It gets down the road thanks to a 169-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.

2020 Nissan Kicks

2020 Nissan Kicks

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

31 mpg in the city/36 mpg on the highway
The Nissan Kicks has had the next-gen version of its engine (shared with the Versa) installed for the 2020 model year. Its better off the line now but still has just 122-horsepower coming from its four-cylinder power plant. The engine is paired with a continuously variable transmission.

2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid

Photo courtesy of Toyota

36 mpg in the city/35 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with two electric mothers and a battery pack. A continuously variable transmission completes the powertrain. It comes standard with front-wheel drive.

2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid

2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

35 mpg in the city/40 mpg on the highway
New for the 2020 model year, the 2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with a four-cylinder engine that produces 212 horsepower and 232 pound-feet of torque.

2020 Lexus UX Hybrid

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

38 mpg in the city/41 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Lexus UX Hybrid has more horsepower than its non-hybrid counterpart. It has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine under the hood and two electric motors that are good for 181 horsepower combined.

2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., Inc.

41 mpg in the city/38 mpg on the highway
The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is designed to be peppier and more fuel-efficient than that non-Hybrid RAV4. It has a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and two electric motors that together produce 219 horsepower. A continuously variable transmission rounds out its powertrain.

2020 Ford Escape Hybrid

2020 Ford Escape Hybrid

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

44 mpg in the city/37 mpg on the highway
The 2020 Ford Escape Hybrid edges out much of the SUV field as one of the most fuel-efficient SUV out there. Completely redesigned for the new model year, the Escape Hybrid is powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gas engine and electric motor that combine to produce 198 horsepower.

2020 Kia Niro

2020 Kia Niro

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

52 mpg in the city/49 mpg on the highway
The Kia Niro's powertrain wasn't designed to blow anyone's doors off. It's made up of a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that is paired with an electric motor. A six-speed dual-clutch transmission completes the powertrain, which achieves 139 horsepower.

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The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder is an off-road ready family hauler.

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The Nissan Pathfinder is the company's three-row crossover, sitting below the Armada and above the Rogue in the company's lineup. It's a rival to the Hyundai Palisade, Kia Telluride, Toyota Highlander, and Honda Pilot. Check out the Nissan's most compelling features by scrolling down.

Every Pathfinder comes loaded with safety technology.

The Nissan Safety Shield 360 suite of safety and driver assist technology comes standard on the Rogue. It includes automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, land departure warning, high beam assist, and rear automatic braking.

Additionally, the company's Intelligent Driver Alertness and Rear Door Alert technologies are standard.

ProPilot Assist takes the wheel.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Nissan's ProPilot Assist technology doesn't allow for hands-free driving and it's not self-driving, but it does fuse together many functionalities that make daily drive functions easier, especially when your children are doing their best to distract you.

ProPILOT Assist combines steering assist and Intelligent Cruise Control to help control acceleration. It can be used in heavy traffic and on open highways.

For 2021, ProPilot Assist has been enhanced. It has next-generation radar and camera technology that is designed to allow for smoother braking, better steering assist, and improved detection performance when vehicles cut into the lane.

There's a removable second-row center console.

Between the second-row captain's chairs in the seven-passenger Pathfinder, there's a thin center console (enough storage space for two cupholders and some small items) that is removable without using any tools. Removing this console allows for easier access in/out of the third-row for small children and adults. With the console in place, the seats can still be tipped and moved forward for quick ingress/egress to/from the third row.

The second row is spacious.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Sitting in the second-row captain's chairs is very much like sitting in those that you'd find in a full-size SUV. Adults will find that hip-room is plenty big enough while children will relish the opportunity to feel like they're being treated to upscale accommodations.

Three people fit across the back seat.

Second-row captain's chairs are being offered for the first time on Pathfinder with this new model. Nissan has added rear seating flexibility with the ability to fit three across the back seat. While three adults are a tight fit in the third row, children, tweens, and some teens that don't have long legs won't likely have a problem with it.

Pathfinder's drive modes are designed to inspire confidence.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Nissan has made the Rogue available with all-wheel drive. Those models also get five drive modes: Off-road, Snow, Standard, Eco, and Sport. The modes are engaged using the drive-mode selector mounted on the center console. The all-wheel drive system uses new technology that is designed to respond quicker when slippage is detected.

It has a 6,000-pound towing capability.

Nissan boasts that the 2022 Pathfinder has best-in-lass available 6,000-pound maximum towing capacity. That's enough to allow boats, ATVs, camp tents, or trailers to be connected out back. Trailer Sway Control is standard on the Pathfinder and allows for more towing confidence, especially when winds pick up.

Moving the second-row seat is as easy as the push of one button.

Nissan has equipped the second-row bench seat in the Pathfinder with EZ-Flex one-touch mechanics. It takes just one press of a button to activate fold and slide functionalities for the second-row seats. The button can be reached from both the driver and passenger sides of the vehicle for ease.

The cargo area is plenty spacious.

2022 Nissan Pathfinder

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America


Behind the SUV's third-row seats Pathfinder can fit a 120-quart cooler or four golf bags - all with the third row full of occupants. The interior can also accommodate 4x8-foot plywood sheets.

The ride is sublimely quiet.

Nissan has equipped the Pathfinder with acoustic laminated front glass, thicker second-row glass, increased door and floor isolation, and a 60-percent increase in engine noise absorption materials. The result is a vehicle that provides a quieter ride, meaning less likelihood parents will have to should to be heard by third-row passengers.

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The Kia Sorento Hybrid offers a lot to like for families looking to save on fuel.

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The redesigned Kia Sorento looks good. Kia has given the three-row SUV new life, not as a substitute for the Telluride SUV but instead as its own crossover, with plenty of differences to give them their own identity.

The 2021 Sorento comes in two variants, the Sorento and Sorento Hybrid. Each is offered in its own set of trim levels. The Sorento base model is powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder internal combustion engine that delivers 191 horsepower and 182 pound-feet of torque. Higher grades get a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that is rated at 281 horsepower and 311 pound-feet of torque.

Sorento Hybrid comes in two trim leaves, S and EX. Both are powered by the company's turbocharged 1.6-liter hybrid powertrain that offers up 177 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. The SUV prioritizes fuel efficiency over performance, an important distinction that sets the Sorento Hybrid apart from other hybrid variants, including the Toyota RAV4 Prime, a plug-in hybrid that delivers an energetic boost to the RAV4 lineup.

2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid The Sorento Hybrid is the type of vehicle that can get you to a trailhead, but isn't built to go beyond that.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The power output is fine if you plan on sticking to in-town driving and aren't looking to load up the Sorento Hybrid for a long road trip. In the default Eco drive mode, the car responds to the throttle the most comfortably. Under traditional and harder acceleration, the Sorento Hyrbid's powertrain is noisy and ill-mannered. It's almost like the SUV is telling you, "I'm built for efficiency, not speed". Message received.

Kia's done a good job making the Sorento agile and it drives nicely and makes for a pleasant daily runaround. Unlike what Toyota has done with the Highlander, all-wheel drive is not available on the Sorento Hybrid.

The 2021 Sorento Hybrid comes standard as a six-seater with captain's chairs in the second row. The seats, leatherette in the upmarket trim level, are comfortable enough. There's a decent amount of cargo space with the third row erect or stowed.

2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid The cabin of the Sorento Hybrid is plush enough for its price point.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The well-thought out cabin design delvers exactly what customers need and in the EX trim level, the car's appointments are near-premium. The SUV has the usual list of standard and available features, but nothing is too fancy: Bluetooth, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, voice recognition, satellite radio, push button start, keyless entry, a rearview camera, wireless smartphone charger. Nothing looks, feels, or operates like it's cutting edge, but it doesn't have to - this isn't a luxury vehicle.

There is one very nice design touch in the cabin. On either side of the infotainment touch screen are vents that service the front row of the auto. Their output is divided into two each with the bottom vent able to serve the midsection of front passengers' bodies while the upper part goes higher. More automakers should design vents this way.

The Hybrid EX model that was delivered for testing had its lane keeping and centering system not as honed in on lane lines as is optimal, which resulted in crossing over the lines without any alert going off or corrective action being taken by the vehicle's computer.

2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid Cargo space is always tight in three-row SUVs, but Kia has given the Sorento a good balance between cargo space and third-row legroom.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The 2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid starts at $33,590. That's a thousand-and-a-half over the starting price of the Telluride and $4,000 more than the traditional 2021 Sorento.

There are currently only two other three-row hybrid SUVs on the market, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid and the Ford Expedition Hybrid. The three models and their varied price tags and third-row layouts service very different customers but they generally all get lumped together. The Sorento Hybrid is, by far, the lowest priced model of the three, and it feels like it when you're inside. There's nothing wrong with that. Dodge sold a lot of Journeys despite the fact that it wasn't the best or most expensive SUV out there.

Think of the Kia Sorento Hybrid as the Dodge Journey of three-row hybrid crossovers and you won't be disappointed.

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