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Shopping for a fuel-efficient used car

Posted on Friday, November 2, 2012 at 4:11:04 PM

Consumers on the market to purchase a car may want to consider buying vehicles secondhand. Used car financing may be utilized to complete the transaction and can be more affordable than buying a new automobile.

However, before a buyer settles on a used vehicle, they should do a little homework to figure out what additional costs they might have once they own the car. In addition to payments toward their auto financing, they should also incorporate the cost of insurance, gasoline and potential repair bills.

Comparing the gas mileage of used vehicles  
The price of gasoline increased significantly so far this year. While some states offer more affordable costs than other, a gas-guzzling car can be expensive to maintain wherever a driver lives. To curb this issue, they should research the fuel efficiency of a vehicle before they decide to buy it.

Shoppers on a used car lot may notice advertisements displaying the mpg of a car. There are often two numbers displaying highway and city mileage. Because vehicles often travel much faster on highways, this number is almost always higher.

However, according to, the most accurate way to understand the real gas mileage is to figure the average of both numbers. This is especially important if a driver often operates a vehicles in a wide range of environments.  

Take advantage of online sources
If a used car dealership or an individual seller is unsure of a vehicle's fuel efficiency, there are a number of outlets to obtain this information.

Perhaps the most reputable is the U.S. Department of Energy's website Through this outlet, consumers can look up and compare the fuel efficiency of vehicles dating back to 1984. Additionally, drivers can personalize the website so the fuel efficiency meter incorporates their driving habits and where they often operate their vehicle for more accurate results.

Consult the carmaker
Another good way to determine the fuel efficiency of a vehicle is to consult the manufacturer. However, consumers should be careful. A few carmakers have been known to only promote the mpg highway of a vehicle, since it's the higher number and, therefore, more appealing to shoppers.ADNFCR-16001052-ID-800899036-ADNFCR