Sport-utility vehicles and crossovers continue to be the hottest automotive segment in America. Their versatility makes them an attractive alternative to sedans, minivans and wagons. However, those who need an SUV or crossover don’t have to forget good fuel economy. With hybrids, electrics, diesels and even highly-efficient gas engines, the 2017 SUV lineup offers plenty of fuel-efficient choices.
Tesla Model X 75D AWD
The Model X is currently the only production electric SUV in the market, and this sleek vehicle offers more than just impressive fuel economy. According to Tesla, the 75D has a range of around 257 miles on a full charge and can reach 60 mph in just 4.8 seconds. It has seating arrangement for seven people, and access to the rear seats is via unique Falcon Wing doors. Without an internal combustion engine, the Model X actually offers a large front trunk in addition to the rear cargo area. Last year there was a six-month wait to be a Model X owner; now buyers should be able to take delivery within a couple weeks.
91 / 95 / 93 mpge
Nissan Rogue Hybrid AWD
The Nissan Rogue is redesigned for 2017, and for the first time a hybrid version is offered in both front, and all-wheel-drive configurations; it is scheduled to arrive at the end of 2016. The 2017 Rogue is updated inside and out, with a stronger V-Motion grille, new bumpers and taillights. The Rogue Hybrid is powered by a 2.0-liter gasoline engine combined with an electric motor and the Xtronic continuously variable transmission. The 2.0-liter gasoline engine produces 141 horsepower and 144 lb-ft of torque; the electric motor is rated at 40 horsepower, and the combination creates a net system output estimated at 176 horsepower. The Rogue Hybrid includes an Idle Start/Stop system and an Intelligent Regenerative Braking system. Although, EPA data is not available yet, fuel economy is expected to be 33 mpg city / 35 mpg highway / 34 mpg combined in front-drive format, and 31 mpg city / 34 mpg highway / 33 mpg combined for the all-wheel-drive powertrain.
31 / 34 / 33 mpg
Lexus NX 300h AWD
Lexus joined the growing compact luxury SUV segment with the addition of the all-new NX for 2015. Available with a turbocharged engine or hybrid powertrain, it is the most fuel-efficient hybrid version uptil now. The all-wheel-drive NX hybrid features a gas-electric powertrain that combines a 2.5-liter gasoline engine with an electric motor driving the front wheels and an electric motor powering the rear wheels for additional traction. The new NX is designed to provide sporty handling as well as impressive fuel economy.
34 / 30 / 32 mpg
BMW X3 xDrive28d
BMW SUVs have always been more about sport than utility, and in that vein this diesel-powered X3 certainly doesn’t disappoint. The twin-turbo engine delivers 181 horsepower and, more importantly — 280 lb-ft of torque, which means it feels very quick off the line. Equipped with an 8-speed automatic transmission, the X3 xDrive28d is very fuel efficient, claiming 33 mpg on the highway.
27 / 33 / 30 mpg
Lexus RX 450h AWD
One of the first luxury crossovers in the market, the RX is the best-selling Lexus model ever, and for 2016, it has got a complete makeover. Styling is all new; most noticeable is the brand’s large, bold spindle grille which dominates the front end. Performance for new RX is quite impressive, as well as the 450h hybrid powertrain puts out 308 horsepower while delivering a combined 30 mpg.
31 / 28 / 30 mpg
Subaru made a brilliant move a few years ago when it took the compact Impreza, and with few alterations converted it into the very popular XV Crosstrek, now it is known as Crosstrek. The small crossover is fun to drive, has good space for four as well as a usable cargo area. With 8.7 inches of ground clearance and full-time all-wheel drive, the Crosstrek remains very capable while delivering impressive fuel economy of 29 mpg combined.
26 / 33 / 29 mpg
The Subaru Outback was one of the original crossovers, combining SUV utility with the comfort and convenience of a wagon. Completely new for 2015, Subaru has stayed true to that original formula. Although it is larger with added high-tech features, capabilities and a 2.5-liter horizontally-opposed boxer engine combined with a CVT, Outback’s fuel economy remains impressive, especially for a large vehicle.
25 / 32 / 28 mpg