Okay, we know most people are thinking "style" more so than "efficiency" when they’re looking at a Coupe. After all, the very nature of a coupe kind of pegs its driver as someone free of familial responsibilities. When you add in the fact that most coupes are pretty strong on the performance side of the equation, you have to start wondering if maybe the phrase “best fuel efficient coupes” isn’t something of an oxymoron. We’re pretty certain once you finish perusing this list of the best fuel-efficient coupes, however, you will agree that style, performance, and efficiency can be had all in one ride. In fact, those three can actually be had in way more rides than maybe you realized. Read on...
Alfa Romeo 4C
Everybody knows the new Alfa Romeo 4C has a heritage dating back to the earliest days of motor racing. Its carbon fiber tub is especially lightweight and rigid; its power comes from a 237-horsepower 1.7-liter turbocharged inline four with 258 ft-lbs of torque—matching Alfa’s traditional 1750 cc displacement. Further, it drives like the racing car it looks like it is. Granted, you’ll probably want to avoid using the Alfa as a daily driver, but here’s the kicker; with all of its performance potential, the Alfa Romeo 4C returns an estimated 24 miles per gallon in the city, 34 on the highway, and 28 combined. Pricing starts at $53,900.
Audi’s handsome and sophisticated A5 coupe pretty much singlehandedly made driving a 4-cylinder luxury car palatable to a large swath of the luxury car driving public. One of the best fuel-efficient coupes on the market today, you’d never know the A5 housed a 4-cylinder engine to look at it. However, because of its 220-horsepwower turbocharged 2.0-liter inline four, the Audi A5 returns 22 miles per gallon in the city, 32 on the highway, and 26 combined. This, with all-wheel drive, and a raft of luxury features rivaling the most prestigious rides on the road. Pricing starts at $40,000.
The stylish Audi TT proves driving an economical car doesn’t have to be about putting up with mind-numbing boredom. In fact, the Audi TT is one of the most interesting fuel-efficient coupes on the road. Thanks to its parent corporation’s penchant for getting more than reasonable output from a small-displacement powerplant, the Audi TT is blessed with more than adequate performance potential and surprisingly good fuel economy. According to the EPA, you can expect an Audi TT to return 22 miles per gallon in the city, 31 on the highway, and 26 combined. Pricing starts at $40,350.
Another of the best fuel efficient coupes, the BMW 228i leverages a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine with 240 horsepower and 255 ft-lbs of torque, an eight-speed automatic transmission, and rear wheel drive—to return outstanding driving pleasure coupled with highly laudable fuel economy. Yes, we’ll freely admit when you’re at the wheel of the entry-level BMW coupe you’re likely to be thinking of everything but fuel economy. That’s OK though, the 228i is. The EPA says the BMW is good for 23 mpg in the city, 36 on the highway, and 28 combined. Pricing starts at $32,100.
Some might consider running a BMW 4 Series with a 4-cylinder engine an exercise in underpowered frustration. Few things are farther from the truth. Consider this; the roundly praised 1999 BMW M3 made 240 horsepower from an inline six-cylinder engine. Today’s BMW 428i makes—yep—241 horsepower, from a turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine. Further, driving it, if nobody told you it was four, you’d never know it. It runs just that smoothly. The best part, with it, the BMW 4 Series coupe handily makes our list of the best fuel-efficient coupes. The EPA says 23-city, 35-highway, and 27 combined. Pricing starts at $40,300.
Surprised to see the BMW 6 Series on a list of the best fuel-efficient coupes? We’re surprised to be putting it here. But the fact is the BMW 640i returned 21 mpg in the city, 32 on the highway, and 25 combined in EPA fuel economy tests. That a palatially appointed luxury coupe with outstanding ride and handling, alluringly sleek styling, and a serious performance reputation could pull all of this off is beyond remarkable. In other words, one of the most highly coveted coupes in the world is also one of the most fuel-efficient. Nice. Pricing starts at $76,600.
New for 2015, the Cadillac ATS is yet another shot fired in Cadillac’s battle to win the hearts and minds of luxury car buyers. The entry-luxury sport coupe kills ‘em with style, practicality, and luxury all in one captivating package. The Cadillac small coupe also has the goods to be a righteously competitive presence in its peer group. Power for the 4-cylinder version of the coupe comes from a turbocharged engine displacing 2.0-liters and producing 272 horsepower, along with a rather healthy 295 ft-lbs of torque. And yet, it also delivers 21 miles per gallon in the city, 30 on the highway, and 24 combined. Pricing starts at $37,995.
Clothed in what is easily the most successful deployment of Cadillac’s Art & Science design language to date, the plug-in hybrid Cadillac ELR is absolutely stunning to behold. Perhaps owing to its appearance, people expect it to be fast rather than frugal. But therein lies the beauty of the Cadillac ELR. Outrageously stylish, sinfully luxurious, and wholly advanced, the Cadillac ELR is also capable of driving some 37 miles on electricity alone—no gasoline burned at all. When the gasoline engine fires, (primarily to generate electricity), it returns 33 miles per gallon overall. Pricing starts at $75,000.
Honda Civic Coupe
Boasting outstanding build quality and renowned reliability, you’d think Honda would be satisfied with what it has wrought. But no; the overachieving Honda Civic Coupe goes above and beyond these attributes with a high quality interior treatment as well as a premium attitude. In fact, if you didn’t know the Honda was an economy car, its smoothness and sharp road manners might have you believing its price is considerably steeper than it turns out to be. On top of everything else, the Honda Civic Coupe is easily one of the best fuel-efficient coupes offered today. The brilliant little Honda returns 30 mpg in the city, 39 on the highway, and 33 combined. Those are practically hybrid numbers. Pricing starts at $18,290.
Good looks notwithstanding, Honda’s CR-Z is also one of the best fuel-efficient coupes available. The product of a company well known for technologically advanced, lightweight, fuel-efficient, fun to drive cars, when the CR-Z was introduced back in 2011, the little Honda was the first truly sporty hybrid two-seater. A taut suspension system, quick steering, and the first six-speed manual transmission ever fitted to a hybrid automobile defined the package. While many decry the Honda CR-Z for not achieving even better fuel economy, it’s still one of the best fuel-efficient coupes. Offering a choice blend of sportiness and frugality, the Honda returns 31-city, 39-highway, and 37 miles per gallon combined. Pricing starts at $20,145.
Kia Forte Koup
Most missives concerning the sharp little Kia Forte Koup focus on how reasonably priced it is and what a remarkable slate of standard features the model offers. These are both very relevant points—the little Kia two-door is most definitely all that. It’s also designed by a team led by one of the pre-eminent automotive designers working today, Peter Schreyer, formerly of Audi. This, too, is a more than adequate reason to heap praise upon the Kia Forte Koup. But even without all of those factors going for it, the Forte would still be noteworthy as a coupe returning 26 mpg in the city, 39 on the highway, and 29 mpg combined. Pricing starts at $18,590.
Upon its launch back in 2012, the Mercedes-Benz C250 was the only 4-cylinder Mercedes-Benz offered in the US. Today, with turbocharged 4-cylinder power becoming a norm in the luxury category, 4-cylinder models proudly wearing the three-pointed star surround the C250. However, it remains the only 4-cylinder two-door coupe in the brand’s product portfolio, as well as one of the best fuel-efficient coupes from any manufacturer. Offering the style and grace of a Mercedes coupe in a more economical package, the C250 is good for 22 mpg in the city, 31 on the highway, and 25 combined. Pricing starts at $39,400.
Scion FR-S/Subaru BRZ
The Scion/Subaru twins are delightful entries in the small car marketplace. Back to basics performance cars, the fuel-efficient coupes deliver an enjoyable driving experience along with a comfortably spacious interior and a roomy trunk. The rear drive cars use a 200-horsepower, 2.0-liter horizontally opposed "boxer" four-cylinder engine capable of producing 151 ft.-lbs. of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard (delivering 22-city/30 hwy), while a six-speed automatic transmission (good for 25-city/34-highway) with shift paddles on the steering wheel and rev-matched downshifts is the optional pick. Pricing starts at $25,670 for the Scion and $25,695 for the Subaru.