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A red 2020 Chevy Malibu is shown from the front at an angle.

The Most Fuel-Efficient Used GM Vehicles

Shopping for a vehicle can be a time-consuming process, not to mention stress-inducing in attempting to find the right choice. For many consumers, it’s important that a vehicle be cost-effective, that is, not costing too much when the paperwork is signed and the assurance that they won’t be paying too much at the pump. For many, both of these features are found by purchasing a used vehicle of above-average quality, and when it comes to brands that more consumers trust, look no further than GM. For those on the way to visit their local used car dealer, take a look at the list we put together of some standout GM models that are great for those looking to make fewer stops at the gas station and keep more money in their wallets.

The 2020 Chevy Malibu

Just because the SUV has cornered the automotive marketplace doesn’t mean that the four-door sedan has gone the way of pet rocks and bell bottoms. On the contrary, the Chevy Malibu is one of the most reliable choices for those content with four doors and agreeable fuel economy. In 2020, the Malibu came with two distinctive powertrain options, one built for performance and the other for practicality. For those who were interested in saving a few extra pennies at the pump, a 1.5L four-cylinder engine equipped with a CVT allowed consumers to achieve 29 MPG in the city and 36 MPG on the highway for a combined average of 32 MPG. The EPA estimated savings of $1,000 over a period of five years when compared to the industry average.

The 2018 Buick Encore

What happens when you have a preference for the finer things in life but find yourself adhering to a budget? Simple, you go, Buick! In recent years, the brand has offered the same luxurious attributes normally associated with brands from across the Atlantic. The key difference is that Buick makes these virtues affordable to the average income. If you’re looking for a family-friendly vehicle that won’t break the bank in terms of fill-ups, we suggest the 2018 Encore. With 25 MPG in the city and 33 MPG on the highway, it’s the ideal choice for city dwellers and suburbanites alike.

A blue 2017 Chevy Bolt EV is shown from the front at an angle.

The 2017 Chevy Bolt EV

In recent years, the electric vehicle (EV) has been the single most exciting aspect of the automotive industry to keep tabs on. In the span of a little more than a decade, we’ve seen the concept go from hybrid-electric powertrains that propelled small and compact vehicles to SUVs and larger vehicles being given the benefit of an all-electric propulsion system. The ideal compromise between these two schools of thought can be found in the 2017 Chevy Bolt EV. We chose this year, the same one in which it first arrived, because of the high marks it received from several industry critics, including Car and Driver. The Bolt EV, which took the form of a versatile hatchback, has an electric-only range of 238 miles between each charge. This accounted for savings of well over $5,000 in fuel costs over a period of five years. Plus, a potential tax rebate for purchasing one is the proverbial icing on the cake.

The 2020 GMC Terrain

If one were to describe GMC properly, it would be a combination of the practicality and reliability of Chevy and the refined taste of Cadillac. While many GMC vehicles have long been described as fancy equivalents to their Chevy siblings, the brand has long stood on its own as a trusted wing of the GM family. For consumers who need an SUV with capability and conservative fuel consumption, look no further than the 2020 Terrain.

A five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration means peace of mind for today’s modern family, and a maximum towing capacity of 3,500 lbs meant that versatility was deeply rooted in its design. The inclusion of the Terrain on this list is to demonstrate the diversity and efficiency of the GM brand. This year, in particular, saw the vehicle achieve 26 MPG in the city, a number that increased to 30 MPG when on the highway. For comfort, fewer trips to the gas pump, and family-friendly security, this offering from GMC covers all the terrain.

The 2018 Chevy Spark

A big part of fuel efficiency boils down to the environment in which you operate your vehicle. For those who live in the city, driving can be a daily struggle of stop-and-go traffic and weaving through dangerous traffic patterns and parking lots. Luckily, a vehicle exists that can accommodate both of these perils. The Chevy Spark, which was discontinued after the 2022 model year, combined a small size with a powertrain that was perfect for city dwellers. For 2018, this powertrain consisted of a 1.4L four-cylinder engine and a CVT, which turned out to be very advantageous. It got up to 30 MPG in the city and 38 MPG on the highway for a combined total of 33 MPG. Finding a used Spark isn’t difficult, and thanks to its depreciation, getting one for a low price is certainly a possibility.

The 2019 Chevy Cruze (Diesel)

One of the most successful comebacks to occur in recent years has been the diesel-fueled engine. While many of them once had a reputation for being small, loud, and boisterous, Duramax and GM have once again implemented them and given them a rebirth as one of the best fuel-efficient options on the market. And while they’ve made a name for themselves as part of the Silverado, the 2019 Chevy Cruze proved that diesel power and a four-door sedan could still be an excellent match. With 31 MPG in the city and an astonishing 48 on the highway, the diesel-fueled Cruze had a combined total MPG of 37 and a total average range of 500 miles between fill-ups. In an age where the industry is constantly evolving, diesel still has a lot to offer.

The 2019 Chevy Volt

When it came to 2019, the king of the EV mountaintop was the Chevy Volt. A PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle), the Volt had more range than any other vehicle in its class. A total range of 420 miles, with 53 of those being electric-only, the Volt offered a combined MPG of 42 on gas alone. Finding a Volt isn’t just taking advantage of the strides in technology that have made the EV such a success, but it can almost be seen as a unique piece of history. The Volt proved to be a harbinger of what the EV would eventually strive for year after year, and with its 8-inch infotainment screen and unique interior design, it’s certainly worth acquiring.

A blue 2018 Chevy Volt EV is shown from the front at an angle after leaving a used car dealer.

Times Change, but a Fuel-Efficient Vehicle Is Always a Good Investment

Thank you for taking the time to look at the research we’ve presented here today. As you can see, the term “used” has no impact on a vehicle’s quality, and when it’s a part of GM’s fleet, you know that you’re getting a product of unsurpassed quality. By taking advantage of depreciation and the many used car lots in your local area, you can snag an impressive deal for a lower price that will save you some much-needed pennies at the pump. With so many vehicles produced over the course of so many years, it’s no wonder why GM is the brand that Americans trust most.