By on December 2, 2009

hyundai girls

In another example of Hyundai’s ability to meet goals it sets for itself, one year after announcing its intention to become the most fuel efficient manufacturer in the land, it has done so. The EPA has released its latest U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fuel economy report, and Hyundai passed all major manufacturers in Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) including traditional leaders like Honda and Toyota. And that’s for Model Year 2009, without the aid of new and expensive technology like hybrids and direct injection. A chart of of all the leading manufacturers’ CAFE numbers follows:

Environmental Protection Agency Fuel Economy Reports


Fuel Economy (mpg)

MY 2009 EPA Lab 55/45* (projected)


Overall (Cars/Trucks)

















General Motors




Hyundai will also be adding DI, turbocharging and hybrid technology, beginning with the 2011 Sonata. Of course, not having any pickups and other trucks in the lineup doesn’t exactly hurt either. But it sure makes that onerous 2016 CAFE standard of 35.5 miles per gallon look like one of Hyundai’s easier to attain goals.

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17 Comments on “Hyundai Tops Honda As Most Fuel Efficient Automaker...”

  • avatar

    Why do I have the sudden urge to visit a Hyundai dealership???

  • avatar

    they don’t make a truck, or a large SUV.  Nothing wrong with that I think its great, but it makes me wonder why they weren’t #1 for years.

    • 0 avatar
      John Holt

      Neither does Honda, unless you consider the Ridgeline minivan-pickup.

    • 0 avatar

      Honda sells the following larger type vehicles:
      MDX / ZDX
      Whereas Hyundai sells the following large vehicles:
      Santa Fe

      So the original poster has a valid point.  However Toyota sells many more larger vehicles and is only 3 tenths behind Honda so Honda’s not doing all that well.  In fact I feel that Honda has really fallen behind the competition in the efficiency of their cars focusing more on hybrids, fuel cells cars, robots, ugly duckling styling rather than making their cars lighter and more efficient through materials and technology of the engines and chassis.

  • avatar

    Why the discrepency between Kia & Hyundai.  I’ll admit that I don’t study the product line of either, but my impression is that Kias are essentially Hyundais dressed down a bit, with Hyundais offering greater luxury and power.  Why is the Kia fleet average 2.1 MPG lower than Hyundai?

  • avatar

    Why is this for the 2009 MY? Because they had to weight it by sales?

    Probably doesn’t hurt that they sold very few of the now-discontinued Entourage minivan.

  • avatar

    I’m with Brandon, no trucks makes it a bit easier for them to attain such a goal. I think Toyota’s number is more impressive because even with vehicles like the Tundra, Sequoia, and Tacoma, they’re within striking distance of the top spot.

  • avatar

    Good for Hyundai.  Imagine how difficult it will be for the Big 3 to meet the 2016 requirement.  They have 2-3x as much ground to make up as Hyundai.

  • avatar

    Hyundai is certainly doing better, worth serious consideration.

    That said, when I look at road tests that are head to head, either same day or consistent method of testing, model for model Honda tends to spank Hyundai on mpg.
    Not always, but perhaps 4 out of 5 times.
    Toyota also does well that way, esp. their 3.5 V 6, which delivers class leading real-world mpg in almost every class it appears in (interesting example in the new CR issue, tested large sedans most got 20 mpg overall,including the 3.6 DI LaCrosse, the Avalon got 24 mpg, 20% more. In fact the Av’s numbers were identical to the last Cobalt CR tested).


  • avatar
    Mark MacInnis

    Niedermeyer….don’t know who is running the visuals department these days, but he deserves a raise…..

  • avatar

    Hmmm…..nope the Genesis coupe is still hideous.
    On topic, Hyundai’s doing it without a “full model range” which diminishes it slightly, same with VW.  At least Honda attempted a pickup.  That being said, that ruins Honda’s advertising for a while.  If only the Insight hadn’t been a complete flop……

  • avatar

    The way those thongs angle up over those girls hips is very inconsistent. In the interests of Hyundai’s quality control, someone needs to make suitable adjustments. I am eminently qualified, and am willing to start immediately.

  • avatar

    So the award for most underpowered engines go to Hyundai. Big whoop.

  • avatar

    Hyundai has best corporate CAFE numbers?  I’m underwhelmed.  My question is,
    if you want a reliable, fuel efficient, fun-to-drive vehicle, what are you gonna buy?
    I’m buying a Honda.  Or rather, I’m keeping the one I have, which gets 22+ mpg
    city and 30+ highway (and btw, it’s an Accord V6, yes V6).

    CAFE numbers indicate nothing, which is why I wonder why anyone ever brings up
    the subject.

    • 0 avatar

      My question is, if you want a reliable, fuel efficient, fun-to-drive vehicle, what are you gonna buy?
      Honestly?    Hyundai, Hyundai, and Hyundai.    Okay, I have to give a slight nod to my old Civic Si and Altima SE in the “fun to drive” category, but the trade-off with those cars was flimsier construction, cheaper interiors and noisier powertrains.
      You have a point about the CAFE  numbers.  My Santa Fe’s fuel efficiency is okay for a 242-horsepower brick, but nothing to write home about.  The company’s new DI engines might change that, however.

  • avatar

    Hyundai has done a great job at increasing gas mileage, but meanwhile back in South Korea, they company is drowning  in scandal, corruption, embezzlement and a very serious economic relationship with North Korea.

    Hyundai’s big dogs – four, to be specific –  have been found guilty of everything from bribing government officials to funneling over $100 million to Kim Jong Il, the guy that doesn’t like us very much.   South Korea’s slaps on all kinds of tariffs and taxes on cars from American manufacturers, thus blocking American cars to be sold in their market.
    There’s more to the story than the MPG, and we should pull back the curtain before we  decide if we want to contribute to the Hyundai parent’s poor corporate behavior.

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