In today’s market, fuel efficiency is one of the main deciding factors when thinking about making a vehicle purchase. Gas guzzlers are a thing of the past, and more automakers are moving into hybrid and EV territory to appease the eco-friendly movement. However, this was not always the case. There are plenty of used cars out there that have the worst gas mileage in history. Let’s go over which ones they are so that you’ll know to avoid them (unless you’re a collector, of course).
10. 1995 Saab 9000
Widely accepted as the worst compact car for gas mileage, the 1995 Saab 9000 only got about 18 mpg city. That’s insanely low for a compact sedan. That’s the kind of fuel economy you would expect to see on a full-size pickup truck or maybe even an older muscle car, not a petite car like this. Alas, the 2.3L four-cylinder engine under its hood, drank gasoline like a fish.
9. 1960 Chevrolet Corvette
The vintage Chevy Corvette is an American classic and legend. However, in all honesty, it was horrible on gas. Its robust V8 engine got between 13 and 14 mpg on average, but since this is such a highly sought after model, we won’t talk too badly about it. It is a collector, after all.
8. 1985 Dodge Diplomat
A decade earlier, the 1985 Dodge Diplomat also managed to get a worse gas mileage rating at 12 mpg. This mid-size sedan was powered by a robust 5.2L V8 engine, but that was seen as quite excessive for a sedan in the 80s. It was so bad, in fact, that this particular model was subjected to the Gas Guzzler Tax. A $550 penalty was added for passenger cars rating under 13 mpg. In 1986, the penalty was raised to $3,850 for cars rating under 12.5 mpg. Bad news for the Diplomat!
7. 2007 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG
Similarly, the sedan with the worst gas mileage from this century is the 2007 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG. It only gets 14 mpg, which is on-par with the 2006 Dodge Charger that is equipped with a massive 6.1L V8 engine. Who would have thought that a luxury sedan would get the same gas mileage as a muscle car? Granted it does handle more like a wagon than a conventional sedan, and it has a top speed of 155 mph. It can also accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4 seconds flat. How’s that for a daily driver?
6. 1988 Pontiac Bonneville
Released in 1957, the Pontiac Bonneville was never a gasoline-friendly car. Due to the embargo on gas in the 1970s, Pontiac had to revisit the engine to make it more fuel-efficient. Do you know what they came up with? An engine with a rating of 11.5 mpg. Granted, this was one of the largest Pontiac models ever built stretching to 230 inches (over 19 feet), and it weighed about 5,000 pounds.
5. 1992 Dodge Viper
In 1992, Dodge produced 155 Vipers to be sold for $50,000. This sleek sports car had a fuel economy set at 14 mpg combined (11 city/20 highway). It had no door handles or air conditioning, but the engine weighed 711 lbs and put out 400 horsepower and 465 lb-ft of torque, which is comparable to many modern sports cars today. Its tubular steel frame was built with resin-transfer molding fiberglass panels to decrease the overall weight to 3,284 pounds. It could also accelerate from zero to 60 mph unjust 4.2 seconds, which is quite impressive for the early 90s.
4. 1984 Ford Bronco
If you were thinking that things couldn’t get worse, we’ve got some surprising news. The 1984 Ford Bronco makes the previously mentioned models seems like hybrids compared to its measly 10 mpg. Powered by a 5.8L V8 engine, this gas-guzzler put out 201 horsepower, which was pretty impressive for the 80s. However, due to the massive size of its body frame and the fact that it had absolutely zero curves to enhance aerodynamics, this beast just couldn’t do well with fuel. The 1984 version was in the midst of its third generation and was constructed mostly out of sheet metal. Its body style was more recognizable as a truck than as today’s modern SUVs. Although the vehicle was discontinued in 1996, there are rumors that this ride will be returning to Ford’s lineup in 2021.
3. 1970 Dodge Challenger
It should come as no surprise that the classic American muscle car known as the Dodge Charger is in the top three for used cars with the worst gas mileage. Released to compete against the Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro, this beast was powered by one of five engine options. The standard was the 5.2L V8, but it was also available with 5.6L, 6.3L, 7.0L, and 7.2L V8 engines. Most were equipped with a basic 3-speed manual transmission, and owners reported that the ride only got about 8 mpg. This large car has a wheelbase measured at 110-inches (just over 9 feet), and it was constructed mostly out of sheet metal. As a coupe, buyers could purchase a hardtop or a convertible.
2. 1986 Lamborghini Countach
As far as exotic used sports cars go, the 1986 Lamborghini Countach is, by far, the worst on gas. Growling under the hood is a 5.2L V12 engine that had a terrible fuel economy set at 7 mpg. That’s so bad that is made the EPA’s list of worst cars. As a two-door coupe with scissor-style doors and a massive rear spoiler, this ride was just too cool to pass on. Even with its horrible fuel efficiency rating and the Gas Guzzler tax, folks still flocked to dealerships to buy them. Chances are if you could afford the hefty Lamborghini price tag, the added $3,850 tax wasn’t going to phase you. Conceptualized by Italian designer Marcello Gandini, this sleek model exudes sophistication, athleticism, and elegance with its sleek lines and eye-catching style.
1. 1967 Chevrolet Camaro
Released by General Motors as a solid competitor to the Ford Mustang, the 1966 Chevy Camaro a 3.8L I6 engine that generated 140 horsepower. Equipped with a Saginaw three-speed manual transmission, it had a fuel economy set at 5.4 mpg. You read that right. This two-door muscle car could seat four passengers and was available as a hardtop or convertible. It was unveiled in 1966 for the following year and was available in three packages, including RS, the SS, and the Z/28. The RS was more of an appearance package. It came with hidden headlights, taillamps, RS badging, and brightly colored exterior accents. The SS was more of a performance package, and it came with a bigger engine (your choice of 5.7L or 6.5L V8s), SS badging, unique striping, and non-function air inlets located on the hood. The Z/28 was also a performance package with a different engine (4.9L V8), power disc brakes, a 4-speed transmission, and two broad stripes down the hood and trunk lid. You’ve probably seen these in films or classic car magazines.