Most Fuel Efficient Petrol Cars in SA (2019)

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Fuel consumption is an important factor to consider when buying a new car and if you are looking for the most fuel efficient (non-hybrid) petrol cars currently on sale in South Africa, then this list is for you...

The recent fuel price increases have South African motorists cringing at the pumps but if you are in the market for a new car, you'd be wise to choose a car that will consume as little fuel as possible in an effort to save money over time. This list highlights the most fuel efficient petrol cars currently available in South Africa.

It's worth remembering that the amount of fuel you save while driving will depend on a number of critical factors including your driving style, road conditions and mechanical condition of the car, to name a few. The list below is compiled based on manufacturer claimed fuel consumption figures and figures will vary in real-world driving scenarios, the figures are, however, achieved on the same test, so it's a level playing field for all the manufacturers. Note that hybrids have not been included in this list. Prices are accurate as of July 2019.  

Most Fuel Efficient Petrol Cars in South Africa

1. Fiat 500 63kW - 3.8 L/100 km

The charming Fiat 500 is offered as a hard-top or convertible. The 63 kW/145 Nm 0.9-litre, 2-cylinder turbopetrol engine is particularly efficient with a claimed fuel consumption figure of 3.8 L/100km and it can be had in either manual or automatic guise. There are also 3 trim levels to choose from including Pop, Pop Star and Lounge. 

Pricing for the Fiat 500 starts at R206 900.

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2. Smart ForTwo - 4.1 L/100 km

For something a little different, you may want to consider the Smart ForTwo city car. It's offered in 3 trim levels (Base, Passion and Prime) and is powered by a  3-cylinder 1.0-litre petrol engine with 52 kW and 91 Nm of torque and mated with a 5-speed manual transmission as standard. Fuel consumption is claimed at 4.1 L/100km. If you are looking for a more spacious Smart car, then the ForFour is also offered with fuel consumption claimed at 4.2 L/100km. The ForFour also offers a bit more punch with 66 kW and 135 Nm produced by its A 0.9-litre, 3-cylinder turbopetrol engine.

Pricing for the Smart ForTwo starts at R176 434 while the ForFour is priced from R181 478.  

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3. Audi A1 1.0 TFSI S Sportback - 4.2 L/100 km

The Audi A1 is the most premium car to feature on this list. The entry-level, manual A1 Sportback is the most frugal, with a claimed fuel consumption figure of 4.2 L/100 km. Power comes courtesy of a turbocharged 1.0-litre petrol engine offering 70 kW and 160 Nm of torque. 

The Audi A1 Sportback is priced from R333 500.  

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4. Fiat Panda - 4.2 L/100 km

The quirky Fiat Panda made a comeback in 2017 with 4 derivatives on offer (including two 4x4 versions) but it's the non-4x4 derivatives that boast the lowest claimed fuel consumption figures at 4.2 L/100 km. The Panda is powered by the same engine found in the Fiat 500, a 2-cylinder, 0.9-litre turbopetrol engine with outputs of 63 kW and 145 Nm of torque. A 5-speed manual transmission is standard. 

The Fiat Panda is priced from R204 900

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5. Ford Fiesta 1.0T Manual - 4.3 L/100km 

The new Ford Fiesta came to market in 2018 and the 1.0-litre turbopetrol engine mated with a 6-speed manual transmission returns a respectable fuel consumption figure of 4.3 L/100km. This engine is offered with either 74 kW or 92 kW and 170 Nm of torque.

Pricing starts from R278 200 for the Fiesta 1.0T Trend while the Fiesta 1.0T Titanium is priced from R314 400

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6. Peugeot 208 1.2 Active - 4.3 L/100km

The Peugeot 208 1.2 Active is the most frugal in the 208 range with a claimed fuel consumption figure of 4.3 L/100 km. This derivative is powered by a naturally aspirated 1.2-litre petrol engine with 60 kW and 118 Nm and is mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. 

Pricing for the 208 1.2 Active starts at R224 900

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7. Toyota Aygo - 4.3 L/100km 

The quirky Toyota Aygo is a popular budget car that also happens to offer good fuel consumption figures with Toyota claiming 4.3 L/100km. The Aygo range makes use of a 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder petrol engine with 53 kW and 93 Nm of torque. All Aygo derivatives are fitted with a 5-speed manual transmission as standard. 

Pricing for the Aygo starts at R174 900 and goes up to R201 900 for the range-topping X-Cite derivative. 

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8. Opel Astra 1.0T -  4.4 L/100km 

The Opel Astra with its 1.0-litre turbopetrol engine carries a claimed fuel consumption figure of 4.4 L/100km while offering 77 kW and 170 Nm of torque. This engine is mated with a 5-speed manual transmission as standard. 

Pricing starts from R301 049 while the higher-spec Astra 1.0T Enjoy is priced from R329 409

9. Renault Kwid 1.0 Dynamique Auto - 4.4 L/100km 

The Renault Kwid, which was updated earlier this year with ABS, is a popular choice in the budget car segment and the automated manual Dynamique derivative is the most frugal derivative in the range with a claimed figure of 4.4 L/100km. The 1.0-litre petrol engine offers outputs of 50 kW and 91 Nm. 

The Kwid Dynamique auto is priced from R157 900

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10. Audi A3 30 TFSI Sedan - 4.5 L/100km 

This entry-level A3 sedan is powered by a perky 1.0-litre turbopetrol engine with 85 kW and 200 Nm of torque on offer while claiming a fuel consumption return of 4.5 L/100 km. A 7-speed dual clutch transmission is standard and pricing starts at R442 000

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11. Volkswagen Polo 1.0 TSI Trendline/Comfortline - 4.5 L/100km 

The Volkswagen Polo is a popular choice in the compact hatchback segment and in Trendline and Comfortline guise, the Polo 1.0 TSI returns a claimed fuel consumption figure of 4.5 L/100km. It's 3-cylinder, 1.0-litre turbopetrol engine offers 70 kW and 175 Nm of torque and is mated with a 5-speed manual transmission. 

Pricing for the Polo 1.0 TSI Trendline starts at R252 400 while the Polo Comfortline derivative is priced from R282 500

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