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Used Midsized Sedans with the Best Fuel Economy

These seven fuel-efficient 5-year-old nonhybrid midsized sedans are a smart and satisfying buy according to a new Consumer Reports analysis.

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Perks of 5-Year-Old Cars

One of the main benefits of buying a used 5-year-old model is that they have already gone through the most significant part of their depreciation cycle. Furthermore, if there were any kinks or problems in the models when they were new, typically most of the problems have already been taken care of by the previous owner’s warranty protection.

Furthermore, another important perk lies in that by now CR analysts know which models have average or better reliability, rather than a “predicted reliability” based on a similar model from the previous year of manufacture.

When Midsize is the Right Size

Larger vehicles like SUVs are not for everyone. However, when it comes to other choices―like midsized sedans―the fact is that they do get the same level of marketing effort by manufacturers and dealerships. In other words, there’s some marginalization in automotive sales for vehicles that offer a narrower profit margin.

To meet this underserved market, CR analysts have been data digging into their consumer surveys to identify which models have proven to be exceptional choices made by their owners. Doing so allowed them to weed out models that consumers were not satisfied with and find those models of less-expensive, mid-sized sedans that proved to be relatively dependable, fuel-efficient, and possess safety features car shoppers desire in their car.

To help steer you to the best choice, we’ve assembled a list of the most fuel-efficient 5-year-old nonhybrid midsized sedans. All performed well enough in our tests to be recommended when new. And all have average or better reliability, according to CR’s Annual Auto Surveys, where we ask CR members to tell us about what went wrong with the cars they own,” stated CR analysts in their recent newsletter.

That said, here is a summary of the seven models you should consider when looking for an affordable, dependable, and fuel-efficient used sedan.

Related article: Learn to Inspect That Used Car Like a Car Care Nut

USED MIDSIZED SEDANS WITH THE BEST FUEL ECONOMY

1. Toyota Camry 2019

Price Range:  $17,400 - $22,425

Owner Reported MPG:  31 mpg

Reliability Score: 73/100

Owner Satisfaction Score: 3/5

Safety Features: Standard safety equipment included FCW and AEB with pedestrian detection, while BSW and RCTW were available on certain models.

 

2. Honda Accord 2019

Price Range:  $17,400 - $23,900

Owner Reported MPG:  30 mpg

Reliability Score: 56/100

Owner Satisfaction Score: 4/5

Safety Features: Standard safety equipment included FCW and AEB, while BSW and RCTW were standard on the EX trim and above.

 

3. Nissan Altima 2019

Price Range:  $15,400 - $20,525

Owner Reported MPG:  30 mpg

Reliability Score: 45/100

Owner Satisfaction Score: 2/5

Safety Features: Safety systems including FCW, AEB, and BSW.

 

4. Kia Optima 2019

Price Range:  $13,750 - $17,525

Owner Reported MPG:  28 mpg

Reliability Score: 42/100

Owner Satisfaction Score: 2/5

Safety Features: Standard advanced safety features that include FCW, BSW, and RCTW.

 

5. Mazda 6 2019

Price Range:  $15,175 - $21,950

Owner Reported MPG:  25 mpg

Reliability Score: not available

Owner Satisfaction Score: 3/5

Safety Features: Standard advanced safety features include FCW, BSW, and RCTW.

 

6. Subaru Legacy 2019

Price Range:  $16,625 - $22,575

Owner Reported MPG:  28 mpg

Reliability Score: 64/100

Owner Satisfaction Score: 4/5

Safety Features: If possible, find a Premium trim or above that was built with Subaru’s EyeSight system of active safety features.

 

7. Ford Fusion 2019

Price Range:  $13,900 - $23,950

Owner Reported MPG:  25 mpg

Reliability Score: 64/100

Owner Satisfaction Score: 4/5

Safety Features:  FCW, AEB, and BSW were optional.

 

For additional used car or truck recommendations, be sure to check out these other recent CR-recommended vehicles:

Timothy Boyer is an automotive reporter based in Cincinnati. Experienced with early car restorations, he regularly restores older vehicles with engine modifications for improved performance. Follow Tim on  “Zen and the Art of DIY Car Repair” website, the Zen Mechanic blog and on Twitter at @TimBoyerWrites  and Facebook for daily news and topics related to new and used cars and trucks.

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Image source: Deposit Photos

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