When shopping for a sports coupe, most buyers focus on the car’s handling, power, and price. However, considering the high price of gas nowadays, fuel economy could be an important factor as well. In that case, here are five sports coupes under $40,000 that get the best gas mileage.
1. Mazda MX-5 Miata – 30 mpg combined, Starting Price: $27,650
Anyone looking for an affordable sports coupe should know that the answer is always “Miata.” And why wouldn’t it be? The 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata is the embodiment of what a lightweight convertible that’s fun to toss in the corners should be. It also has a starting price that’s below $30,000, and it’s fuel-efficient as well.
According to the EPA, the MX-5 Miata can achieve up to 26 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway with an automatic transmission. Shifting with a manual transmission will equate to 1 less mile per gallon on the highway, but that’s a small price to pay for more fun.
2. BMW 230i – 29 mpg combined, Starting Price: $37,400
Our own Allison Barfield recently reviewed the 2022 BMW 230i saying that “it’s hard not to smile when driving BMW 2 Series.” Barfield notes that the 230i “corners well and feels well-planted around sharp curves.” That type of athleticism, coupled with an eager 250-hp four-cylinder engine, equates to a lot of fun on the road and the track.
But the performance and handling aren’t the BMW 230i’s only strong suits. With a starting price under $40,000 and a highway mpg estimate of 35 mpg, the 230i is one of the most affordable and efficient coupes you buy as well.
3. Ford Mustang EcoBoost – 25 mpg combined, Starting Price: $27,470
Many muscle car purists scoff at the Ford Mustang EcoBoost’s turbocharged 2.3-liter engine, but we applaud it. It produces a whopping 310 hp and 350 lb-ft of torque, which matches well with the car’s agility thanks to its double-wishbone suspension. Best of all, that small engine can achieve up to 21 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway, according to the EPA. Road trip, anyone?
4. Chevrolet Camaro Turbo – 25 mpg combined, Starting Price: $26,100
Just like the Ford Mustang EcoBoost, a turbocharged four-cylinder Chevrolet Camaro sounds like blasphemy. However, its power output is nothing to sneeze at. The turbo 2.0-liter puts out 275 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque, which equates to a 5.6-second 0-60 mph according to MotorTrend’s testing.
In addition to that surprising amount of performance, the Camaro Turbo also manages up to an EPA-estimated 22 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway with an automatic transmission. Opting for a manual transmission leads to three fewer miles in the city and one less on the highway.
5. Toyota GR86 – 25 mpg combined, Starting Price: $27,900
The 2023 Toyota GR86 is one of our favorite sports cars, and easy to see why. Its agile handling characteristics, daily driving comfort, and high-revving 2.4-liter Boxer engine make the GR86 a pure joy to drive. It may only have 228 hp, but that’s enough power to have fun on any long or short drive without getting into too much trouble.
Additionally, the Toyota GR86 is fuel efficient. The EPA rates the automatic version at 21 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the highway, and the manual gets one and three mpg less, respectively.
Cheap coupes with the best gas mileage for 2022
Power and handling are great attributes to focus on when shopping for a sports coupe, but they’re not the only factors. The aforementioned five coupes are affordable and achieve excellent fuel economy numbers. In that case, coupe buyers can have their cake and eat it too with these prime examples.