Let’s face it petrol prices aren’t going to come down drastically over time. The increased driving distance leading to mounting fuel bills aren’t helping either. At the end of the day, it is a depleting resource and will get more expensive with each day that passes by. There isn’t much you can do about bringing down the fuel prices apart from making sure you consume the smallest amount possible to keep your tank and wallet filled up at the end of the month.
Saving fuel starts from the car you choose to drive and then to your driving habits. Fuel efficiency coupled with maintenance costs should be the deciding factor when purchasing a car. Even changing to an alternate fuel option might sound lucrative but be certain that it justifies your needs. There’s no point spending exorbitant amounts on servicing and spares in place of fuel; while getting a return on your investment would take longer than you actually thought it would.
That leaves you with petrol as the only option. However, manufacturers have been listening and we present you the 5 most fuel efficient petrol cars in India that you need to know.
1. Tata Nano
Taking the top spot with its cute looks, compact size and shoddy build quality is the Tata Nano. Manufactured as the dream car for most of India, the Nano comes with a 624cc, twin cylinder engine producing 37 BHP of power and 55 Nm of torque, weighing just 600 kgs. The small size makes it a breeze to drive in the city with bumper to bumper traffic and on congested roads; which is excellent, compared to other cars in the list. It is also a breeze when it comes to maintenance and won’t give you lengthy bills for repairs. The cabin accommodates four full sizes adults easily and is easy to park and manoeuvre in tight spaces in the city.
However for the price starting at Rs. 1.50 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi), all you get is average build quality and lack of equipment, not to mention the dismal amount of safety available on the car. Also the lack of luggage space, low performance figures and a small fuel tank make it worse for long distance driving. If fuel efficiency is your priority with mostly city usage, the Nano should be an ideal choice.
ARAI Certified Mileage – 25 km/l
Realistic mileage – 18 – 22 km/l
2. Maruti Suzuki Alto 800
If the Nano is too cheap for you, the Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 comes in second as the preferred choice for most car buyers. Buyers look at it as the ideal car for graduating from 2 wheelers or for owning a car for the first time. Decent interior space, modern looks and a reliable engine work in the favour of the Alto 800, while it also provides decent boot space and a fully proportioned car compared to the Nano. Powered by a 800cc 3-cylinder engine, the Alto 800 produces 48 BHP of power and 69 Nm of torque decent enough for city and highway usage. The tall boy design has also freed up more headroom making the cabin spacious than its predecessor. Favouring the Alto 800 is the strong service back up from Maruti, which should keep this ideal family car’s maintenance bills to a minimum.
The Alto 800 however still lacks a lot of equipment and NVH levels; it is the safety features that seem like a distant dream. With prices starting at Rs. 2.46 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi) for the base variant, the Alto 800 is a good choice for the ones looking for fuel efficiency and a decent overall package.
ARAI Certified Mileage – 22.74 km/l
Realistic mileage – 16 – 19 km/l
3. Hyundai Eon
Hyundai’s answer to the Alto, the Eon is good looking young chap with a peppy engine and decent amounts of equipment levels making it a compelling package. Compared to Alto’s conservative looks, Hyundai has used the fluidic design on the Eon as well and look quite likable with all its flare. Powering the Eon is a 814cc 3-cylinder engine, producing 55 BHP of power and 75 Nm of torque. Hyundai has also loaded the Eon with lots of goodies like the drive side Airbag, gear-shift indicator, power windows, music system with AUX and USB port connectivity along with a decent boot space of 215 litres. On paper the Eon definitely seems like a far better proposition than the Alto.
However when compared to the Alto, the prices for Hyundai Eon starts at Rs. 2.80 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi), while the more equipped version is priced at around Rs. 3.30 lakhs. If modern looks and a peppy engine is what you are looking for, the Eon is a fuel efficient offering you can choose.
ARAI Certified Mileage – 21.1 km/l
Realistic Mileage – 15 – 18 km/l
4. Hyundai i10
The i10 has been the blue eyed boy Hyundai and has been selling as a favourite of the masses. The i10 comes with two engine options, being the 1.1-litre iRDE engine and the more potent 1.2-litre Kappa mill; however the Kappa is now available on the Grand i10 only. The i10 is powered by an 1100cc engine producing 69 BHP of power and 99 Nm of torque. What also work in favour of i10 are the expansive equipment list, good space and decent overall build quality provided by Hyundai.
With prices starting at around Rs. 4 lakhs for the 1.1-litre mill, the i10 gives you a host of variants and the Grand i10 series with the 1.2-litre engine as well to choose from. The i10 provides an excellent combination of performance and equipment levels, while also returning excellent fuel economy.
ARAI Certified Mileage – 18.1 km/l
Realistic Mileage – 13 – 17 km/l
5. Honda Brio
Honda entered in the mass segment with the Brio bringing quality and refinement to the table. The Brio looks good, feels great and comes with Honda’s reliability. Its compact looks come with good interior space and decent ride quality. As a city car, the Brio performs excellently, while the high power makes it fun on the highways. The Brio comes with a 1200cc engine producing 88 BHP of power and 109 Nm of torque. The Brio is a peaceful car to live with, no need to expect the service bills to hit the roof. Also the H-badge in front brings in a certain class to your garage.
Honda has provided the Brio with decent equipment, however we wish there could have been more added to the list. With prices starting at Rs. 4.20 lakhs, the Brio gives good competition to i10.
ARAI Certified Mileage – 18.4 km/l
Realistic Mileage – 14 – 17 km/l
Other honourable names include the Nissan Micra, the Maruti Suzuki Swift, the Wagon R, Chevrolet Beat that provide good fuel efficiency, but cost comparatively higher to maintain. Let us know your thoughts and the fuel efficiency figures that your vehicles have managed to achieve in the comments box below.