2011 Chevrolet Volt – The only plug-in hybrid on the list, the 2011 Chevrolet Volt (actually an extended-range electric vehicle), carries a $40,280 starting MSRP, but that decreases to $32,780 with federal tax savings of $7,500 – and lower with any available state tax credits. The mid-size Volt, using TrueCar’s figures, costs $1,424 annually for fuel at $3.52 per gallon and $2,022 with gas at $5.00 per gallon. The 37.1-mpg combined fuel economy is on gasoline only. The Volt can go up to 40 miles on pure electric before the gas-powered generator kicks in to provide enough electricity for the Volt to go up to an additional 340 miles on a single tank of gas.
2011 Lexus HS 250h – In the luxury category, the 2011 Lexus HS 250h, with an average purchase price of $34,872, gets combined fuel economy of 34.5 miles per gallon. It costs an estimated $1,529 at $3.52 per gallon and $2,171 with gas at $5.00 per gallon in annual fuel expenditures.
2011 Honda CR-Z – Another small car – many would say too small for family use, except as a second or even third family vehicle – the 2011 Honda CR-Z is a sporty choice for a fuel-efficient hybrid. Average purchase price of $19,731 isn’t bad for combined 33.4 miles per gallon. Annual fuel costs of $1,479/$2,243 (at $3.52/$5,00 per gallon) aren’t bad, either.
2011 Hyundai Elantra – The only non-hybrid on the TrueCar top 10 list, the 2011 Hyundai Elantra small car has a lot going for it: great styling, comfort, and nice performance. With its 33.1-mpg combined fuel economy and low purchase price (averaging $15,052 according to TrueCar calculations), annual fuel costs are $1,595/$2,266 with per-gallon prices of $3.52/$5.00.
2011 Toyota Camry Hybrid – Winding up the TrueCar top 10 list is the 2011 Toyota Camry Hybrid. The mid-size hybrid, which averages around $27,000 purchase price, achieves 32.7 combined fuel economy. Annual fuel costs are $1,616/$2,295 at the two cost-per-gallon price points TrueCar used.
Want to learn more about any of these vehicles? Check out TheCarConnection for in-depth reviews.