Sports cars often have big engines and impressive performance figures to ensure a thrilling ride and exciting acceleration. Because of this, they use a lot of fuel, making the vehicles not exactly known for their superior fuel economy ratings. However, there are a few outliers, like the 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata, the only sports car on the market with a fuel economy of 30 mpg or higher.
Fuel economy ratings for some of the most popular sports cars
The Volkswagen Golf GTI has been a fan favorite for a long time. According to Volkswagen, its $29,880 starting price makes it practical and exciting. All trims, including the S, SE, and Autobahn, for the 2022 year model come with a 2.0 L four-cylinder turbocharged engine as standard.
The Toyota Supra is another popular sports car in the market and is often a prominent feature in tuner car shows. As for the 2022 model year, the GR Supra is available in two engine options, a 2.0 L inline-four and a 3.0 L inline-six. The 2.0 L variant outputs 255 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque, while its 3.0 L counterpart produces 382 hp and 368 lb-ft torque.
As you’d expect, the smaller engine offers better fuel economy and has an identical overall gas mileage rating to the Golf GTI at 28 mpg. On the other hand, the more powerful 3.0 L engine offers 25 mpg averaged from 22 mpg city driving fuel efficiency and 30 mpg on the highway.
Lastly, there’s the Chevrolet Corvette, dubbed America’s sports car by some. The Corvette’s 6.2 L V8 is one of the most powerful engines in its price bracket, producing 490 hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. As such, it should be no surprise that it’s not very fuel-efficient and is rated at 19 mpg by Edmunds. It does 24 mpg on the highway and 16 mpg in city driving.
The 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata’s fuel economy
Like other sports cars mentioned above, the MX-5 Miata comes in only one engine option: the 2.0 L inline-four. Its performance figures at 181 hp and 151 lb-ft torque may not seem like much, but given the car’s overall weight, this is enough for punchy acceleration. In fact, Car and Driver clocked the Mazda’s 0 to 60 mph acceleration at 5.7 seconds.
The relatively small engine is as fuel-efficient as it gets for a sports car. Edmunds lists the EPA gas mileage statistics for the 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata at 34 mpg on the highway. It drops to 26 mpg in the city for a combined 29 mpg.
Nevertheless, the sports car got an entirely different gas mileage rating in Consumer Reports testing. In city driving, fuel efficiency was 25 mpg, while highway mileage stood at 42 mpg. Consequently, the average was 34 mpg, although buyers must use premium fuel. The sports car with the next best fuel economy rating is the 2022 BMW Z4 which achieved 29 mpg overall.
How electrification in the car industry will affect the Mazda MX-5 Miata
The MX-5 Miata is unlikely to be the only sports car with fuel economy over 30 mpg for much longer. This is due to the electrification of the entire vehicle industry, which is bound to include even the sports car class. There’s also the chance it could lose its fuel economy top-dog status since Mazda reportedly wants to keep the internal combustion Miata around forever.