Although there aren’t a lot of minivans available in the new or used vehicle market today, the few that are have proven to be the best fuel efficient minivans. Consumers who want something other than a wagon or an SUV still gravitate toward spacious and versatile minivans. That’s a good thing. Take a look at these best fuel efficient minivans for a start. Note that the fuel economy numbers come straight from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
- 2011 Toyota Sienna – Two engines in the 2011 two-wheel drive offer fuel-efficient gas mileage: the 2.7-liter 4-cylinder and 3.5-liter V6. Both are mated to a 6-speed electronically-controlled automatic transmission. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 19 mpg city/24 mpg highway and 18 mpg city/24 mpg highway, respectively. Sienna, available in 7- and 8-passenger models, whose main competition has for years been the , is also a Top Safety Pick from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
- 2009 Hyundai Entourage – Hyundai’s first minivan, the 7-passenger Entourage – the mechanical clone of the second-generation , was offered from 2007-2009. While it lasted, the front-wheel drive Entourage offered consumers a lot of convenience and space (although the third row was cramped), and EPA-estimated fuel economy numbers of 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway from the 3.8-liter V6 engine mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission. Consumer Guide gave Entourage (and similar Kia Sedona) a Recommended nod for “size, utility and standard safety features.” Furthermore, say CG editors, “Warranty coverage is impressive and they beat every comparably equipped rival on price.”
- 2011 Kia Sedona – Entourage is gone, but the 7-passenger Kia Sedona is thriving. For 2011, Sedona is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine mated to a 6-speedautomatic and delivers EPA-estimated 18 mpg city/25 mpg highway. Edmunds comments on the 2010 model (2011 is mostly unchanged): “Sedona is all about bang-for-the-buck, delivering virtually all the comfort, convenience, and safety features of its high-profile competitors for a lot less dough.”
Other best fuel efficient minivans include the 2010 Mazda 5, with EPA-estimated 22 mpg city/28 mpg highway (5-speed manual) and 21/27 numbers for the 5-speed automatic with the 2.3-liter 4-cylinder engine. Also, the 2011 Honda Odyssey is all-new, so expect some good numbers for the V6-powered up-to-eight-passenger minivan. The 2010 Odyssey posted EPA-estimated 17/25 mpg numbers in EX-L and Touring models and 16/23 in LX and EX, all with the 3.5-liter V6 engine.