2012 Pickups With the Best MPGs

MPG pump nozzle II
The EPA has released its fuel economy numbers for all 2012 models, and for those shopping purely on fuel economy, there is a number of good choices.

Of course, most of the pickups are four-cylinder models, but V-8s and V-6s made the list, too. Likewise, this isn't just about smaller or midsize pickups, and we expect to see more full-size pickups to get onto this list in the future (especially with a new GM platform likely to be much lighter than the current model).

And if we're lucky enough to have one of these truck makers step out and bring in a small, strong, efficient four-, five- or six-cylinder turbo-diesel or turbo-diesel hybrid, who knows what kind of cool offerings we might see. All we need is that one company to take the risk, win the day, and you can bet others will follow

In the meantime, here's a list of 25 two- and four-wheel-drive models with their corresponding EPA mileage ratings. Although no specific details are given, you can bet these will have the lightest option packages, the highest (lowest numberically) ring-and-pinion ratio and usually the regular cab configuration (unless not offered).


10. 2WD Chevy Colorado

  • 2.9-liter I-4 / five-speed manual
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/combined/highway: 18/21/25 mpg

9. 2WD Chevy Colorado

  • 2.9-liter I-4 / four-speed automatic
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 18/25/21 mpg

MPG Suzuki
8. 2WD Suzuki Equator

  • 2.5-liter I-4 / five-speed manual
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 19/23/21 mpg

MPG Frontier

7. 2WD Nissan Frontier

  • 2.5-liter I-4 / five-speed manual
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 19 / 23 / 21 mpg

MPG Tacoma 2WD 1
6. 2WD Toyota Tacoma
(2011 pictured)

  • 2.7-liter I-4 / four-speed automatic
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 19/24/21 mpg

MPG 4x4 GMC Sierra

5. 4WD GMC Sierra 1500 Hybrid

  • 6.0-liter V-8 / Variable-ratio transmission
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 20/23/21 mpg

4. 2WD GMC Sierra 1500 Hybrid

  • 6.0-liter V-8 / variable-ratio transmission
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 20/23/21 mpg

MPG Silverado 4WD

3. 4WD Chevy Silverado 1500 Hybrid

  • 6.0-liter V-8 / variable-ratio transmission
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 20/23/21 mpg

2. 2WD Chevy Silverado 1500 Hybrid

  • 6.0-liter V-8 / variable-ratio transmission
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 423
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 20 /23/21 mpg

MPG Tacoma 2 II

1. 2WD Toyota Tacoma (2011 pictured)

  • 2.7-liter I-4 / five-speed manual
  • Grams per mile of CO2: 404
  • EPA city/highway/combined: 21/25/22 mpg


Here are the other pickup trucks on the top 25 list. (Note: where not designated, assume four-speed automatic transmission.)




2WD Ford F-150 3.7-liter V-6 (six-speed auto)



2WD Chevy Colorado Crew 3.7-liter I-5



4WD Chevy Colorado Crew 3.7-liter I-5



4WD Chevy Colorado 2.9-liter I-4 



2WD Chevy Colorado 3.7-liter I-5 



4WD Toyota Tacoma 2.7-liter I-4 (five-speed manual)



4WD Toyota Tacoma 2.7-liter I-4



4WD GMC Canyon 2.9-liter I-4 (five-speed manual)



4WD Chevy Colorado 2.9-liter I-4 (five-speed manual)



2WD GMC Canyon crew cab 2.9-liter I-4 (five-speed manual)



2WD GMC Canyon crew cab 2.9-liter I-4 



2WD GMC Canyon 2.9-liter I-4 (five-speed manual)



2WD GMC Canoyon 2.9-liter I-4



2WD Chevy Colorado 2.9-liter I-4 (five-speed manual)



2WD Chevy Colorado 2.9-liter I-4



Do we really need to list the Frontier/Equator and the respective Chevrolet/GMC trucks separately? Kind of sad, that the smaller GMT355 cant match the Tacoma for fuel economy.

1 truck gets 22mpg, 15 trucks get 21 mpg, 3 get 20 mpg, and 6 get 19mpg. So of all the trucks, 24 of the top 25 only have a 2 mpg spread. Amazing.

Nice to see the Colorado/Canyon is good for something! There is no bang for the extra bucks with those hybrids! It's interesting that the only truck that shows their builders put some thought into the future is a full size non-hybrid with a 6 speed auto and a V6 that puts out over 300 hp without direct injection and a turbo and still hangs in there with the mpg's...this truck is ahead of the rest and will stay there until the other builders get it together. I hope they all keep pushing each other to be better!

Where's the EcoBoost?

" All we need is that one company to take the risk, win the day, and you can bet others will follow "

That won't happen. Ford, (and to a lessor extent chevy and dodge 'Ram' ) is/are cowards. Yes cowards, I mean that sincerely. They have been hiding behind the "chicken tax" since 1963. This has allowed the 'big three' to squeeze the American consumer [ specifically pickup buyers ] more than any other vehicle segement. It stifled inovation, witness the capable but orphaned Ford Ranger. It has lead to 'creampuff' machines that are capable but not really very useful. Why the heck is there a platium trim? Lariot, outdoorsman, ........ the point i'm trying to make is that crew cab pickups with 5.5ft beds and GAS engines are NOT for working. I recently ran into an ad for a crew cab long bed pickup where the pickup bed was 6.5 ft long. When I called the sales staff on fact that a long bed was 8ft they looked at me as if I had two heads.
I'm so ticked off I could scream. There is no crew cab 4-wheel drive long bed diesel with a single rear wheel for less than $52,000 within 600 miles of me. They are all 'loaded' trims. Want to order a stripped down 'work truck' ? That will be a 'special order' and so tacks on and extra $10,000. So now your paying for and expensive/high-end trim and getting a stripped down model????????
Ford's new 6.7 has great potential and the duramax and cummins engines are tried and true. But we have heard/been promised over and over, again and again, that a 1/2 ton high mileage diesel was coming. Only to have it curtailed by bad management of the worst sort. " The economy excuse won't work here. " They have been reniging on promises since long before the GOP let the banks run the economy into the ditch.
These companies have no soul, no ethics, and no incentive to change. How much profit can they squeeze out THIS quarter? How big can I make MY bonus? The entire concept of a board of directors is right out the window here. A collection of experienced people to keep an eye on corporate governance, has been replaced. It is now a collection of wise-guys who are only concerned with how much they are getting.
Gorden Gecko would be proud.

The real Americans are turning their heads in shame.

By-the-by before you slam me for my statements being over-the-top. I strongly suggest you CAREFULLY read Fords shareholders report. That $52,000-56,000 pickup your drooling over? It only cost about $22,500 to actually make it.

So they must have done something to the 2012 Colorado I-5 crew cab 4wd, as the 2011 gets 21 on the highway and this shows the 2012 gets 23?????
4WD Chevy Colorado Crew 3.7-liter I-5 17/19/23

The Ford F150 with a 3.7 is the only non-hybrid full size truck on this list.

Well there is the Proof in the pudding ford girly men and NOBODY gets better fuel economy than GM trucks. and for the ford girly men bragging about the 3.5 liter Eco-Boost engine that is rated at 22 miles per gallon that is only on their TWO WHEEL DRIVE MODEL. In FOUR WHEEL DRIVE, the Eco-Boost is only rated at 15 city and 21 Highway the exact same amount as GM'S 5.3 liter V-8 engine.

When towing with the Eco-Boost engine, the fuel economy is disappointing to say the least. Several tests prove that when towing with the Eco-Boost the engine has to rev higher and sometimes the Turbo's kick in and there goes your fuel economy. I am pointing this out because several test magazines that have tested the Eco-Boost engine stated they were disappointed in the fuel economy when towing.

Congrats to GM for making the best fuel economy trucks on the road today period. Ford does make the best "Man Step" though. You can't argue with the facts so don't even try. another win for GM. Good day.


Why there is no global Ranger. Too expensive and this...


2WD Ford F-150 3.7-liter V-6 (six-speed auto)


2WD Chevy Colorado Crew 3.7-liter I-5


i would still take the Eco-boost over the gutless 5.3 Gm, way more power and torque than the 5.3 and get the same if not better FE real world driving not off some stat sheet from the phucking EPA, power wise you could put the Eco boost up against the 6.0 Gm and it blows that away in Fe

Ford F-150 EcoBoost
16 city 18 combined 22 highway

Chevy Silverado 5.3
15 city 17 combined 21 highway

source: fueleconomy.gov

Anybody notice that 15 of the 25 were a version of the Colorado? Of the remaining 10, 4 are Silverado hybrids, which btw, why does the 2wd and 4wd get the same economy? Of the remaining 6, 4 are versions of the Tacoma!


GM FTW ford is on the side line dreaming about being as good as GM. When the next gen Chevy and GMC come out people will go eco boost whats that? Because they be buying GM as they simply blow ford out of the water all day and year after year long! go to yah GM dealer and trade in for some great trucks by a GM today!

Now if only Ford could put the 3.7L V6 in something the size of a Colorado/Tacoma. It would likely get similar fuel economy to competitor's 4cyl trucks, but with significantly more power.

And another note, has anyone calculated how many decades and hundreds of thousands of miles it would take to just break even on the extra money spent on a Silverado Hybrid over a regular 5.3 Silverado?

whats funny as Ford touts best MPG...#25...far from best...

This list just goes to show how ford is the leader in innovative and creative products. Ford has the only non-hybrid full size truck on this list. Whats more amusing is that the 4wd and 2wd hybrid silverado/sierras attain the same mileage.
To the consumer who complain about high prices, well what do you expect? so want to buy a product at the lowest possible price and producers wnat to sell at the highest possible price. The industry for pickups is similar to oligopoly, so that each firm has considerable control over price. what they do is reduce the supply so that price goes up and advertise heavily to promote product differentiation. This is why chevy and gm need to step it up, playing catch-up all the time equals to lost profit, theo nly way to judge a best company is to see the sales, and for 34 years, Ford continues to outsell the ocmpetition. At the end of the day its who sold the most and made the most money because the extra profits yield more research and development. If your not in it to make money your watsing resources and will inevitabley go out of business. Gee, that sounds familiar, didnt gm go bankrupt? I wonder why bob loves gm so much, does he like to support failing companies? Lol that would explain his logic.

Using the below calculator and the MSRP and fueleconomy at fuleconomy.gov and gas at $3.28 per gallon (AAA fuel price report) computes the following.

Using the high MSRP's of the Silverado 5.3 and Hybrid, the breakeven point would be 183,000+ miles on the hybrid.

Using the low MSRP's, the break even would be 468,864 miles.

So breakeven would be anywhere from 183,000 to 468,864 miles depending on configurations.

If you travel 15,000 miles, break even point in terms of years will be from 12 to 31 years.


Hey Mike you Ship In High Transit for brains you. Yes the Eco-boost is rated at 16 city and 22 highway in TWO FRIGGIN WHEEL DRIVE. Who in Gods green earth buys TWO WHEEL DRIVE TRUCKS. Who?????

I would dare say 90% of the pickuptrucks.com owners own FOUR WHEEL DRIVE TRUCKS.

So four wheel drive the Eco-Boost is 15 city and 21 highway.

Source. www.fueleconomy.gov

It will depend on the area, but overall most trucks are sold as 2wd. TX, FL, Calif are mostly all 2wd and the biggest markets.

Congratz to ford! They are the only non-Hybrid full size pickup that made it on the list!

@Tom - Thanks for running the numbers. If you consider that you will need to replace the hybrid battery pack well before the 183,000 mile mark, the Silverado Hybrid is just a waste of money. That's why Ford went the eco-boost route. When you do the math it's the better choice from an economic and green standpoint.

Ford is the only non-hybrid full size pickup on the list. The problem is that it is a Ford! From talking to some owners, they are money pits.

Who in their right mind would want to buy a; stripped down I-4 Equator/Frontier, Tacoma, or I-5 Canyon/Colorado versus a Ford F-150 3.7L V-6? With the F-150 you get a usable size and usable power all without a penalty in fuel economy. Plus, by buying the Ford F-150 you get the king of all pickups. Proof that buying a Ford is a win, win, win situation.


apparently bob thinks anyone that likes a ford is a girly man. That is something a 13 year old would say

Oh and by the way. When you buy the Ford F-150 -you are buying an All-American product from an All-American company!

Not the case when you buy a Nissan, Suzuki, or Toyota!

Auto Trader shows about 40,000 2012 Chevy Silverado 1500 pickups in 4wd. There are about 35,000 in 2wd. So it's very close. Lots of people buy 2wd.

Tom you are so full of crap, just because people down south may not need a four wheel drive truck doesn't mean that most trucks sold in tx, florida and California are not 4 wheel drive. So don't give me you b.s. about trucks sold in warm weather states. Here in the midwest, if it's not a 4 wheel drive truck you don't own a real truck.

and you can stick your b.s. numbers about GM'S hybrid trucks up your donkey rear end. The Hybrid GM trucks are superior on fuel economy and your just trying to say otherwise. Just take a poll of Pickuptruck.com owners and ask if they own a 4 wheel drive or a girly man two wheel drive truck? it won't even be close.


This is why I bought Ford stock back in late 2008 when it was under 2 bucks a share.

It's up over 450% as of today and what with the sh!tty economy and resultant low price of fuel and the pent up demand for new vehicles after so many years of having a sh!tty economy, Ford stock is going to much higher if the economy catches any traction whatsoever.

Barring a lottery win or somesuch, I don't see myself ever buying a new Ford (or any new truck) because the value just isn't there. Hell, my truck is 11 years old and rusted to dust. However, I will do what I can to take advantage of the obvious trends.

Can't beat 'em, join em.

@Michigan Bob - fine, poll time... I'm from Texas, I've owned a 5.0 powered 4x4 Ranger and 4x4 Land Rover Discovery. I currently have a 2wd F150 and 2wd Dodge Ram, and a 4x4 Suzuki Samurai. Does that make me a Manly Man or A Girly Man?

whats that i hear? oh thats ford girls crying, i should be use to hearing that by now. GM's old motors are still leading mpg wars and still have power to please most owners for what they normally use there trucks for go GM!!

@johnny doe - The GM 5.3 can't touch the Ford 3.7 V6 in mpg, which also has enough power for what most owners normally use their trucks for. What's your point?

I wondered when numb nuts blob was going to start bitchin!
Heaven forbid you type something negative about his truck company. Hey Tom...blob doesn't like numbers...you have the facts, he has his opinion. Hey beebe...you're talkin a 13 year old 5th grader...

I swear that Mark could write about kittens playing with string and it would turn into Ford vs. GM and anti anything else.

Do you guys really think your diatribe actually amounts to anything or will help you "win" your cause?

Back to the article, I do think it is sad that the mid-size and compacts can only must 22 mpg at best and this is in the least user friendly versions. I would hope that some newer tech and not having the profile of a clothes dryer will help the next gen trucks break these continually poor cycles.

The GM hybrids are likely to get a big shot in the arm for round 2 and I have some hopes that they improve enough in MPG's, increase capabilities and drop in costs to really make them a viable alternative on a large scale.

(For those thinking the battery has to be replaced constantly this is patently false. Automotive hybrid batteries are lasting around 250-350k miles and are running about $500 per kWh of capacity to replace {installed price} and these hybrids are typically running less than 2 kWh capacity batteries. I can think of probably 6-8 things off the top of my head that will cost at least $1000 that will have to be done well before 300k miles and probably 2 or 3 times before those kind of miles are hit.)

I'd like to see some modest diesels in the half tons and mid-sizers to help MPG's but I really don't think we'd see as big of an improvement as people are thinking and they'll likely cost at least as much as a hybrid and have higher running costs. That doesn't make much economic sense and we can all play armchair CEO's but they are actually getting massive studies and engineering efforts to see just which models are going to be best in the near and long term future and the diesels are NOT winning the money battle.

my point is most these motors could be bought since 1999 5.3 6.0 and colorado early 2000s and are still whoop ass on ford hard core and i find that funny

stop feeding the trolls shesh

Tacoma is #1 for fuel economy...

1. 2WD Toyota Tacoma (2011 pictured)...

•2.7-liter I-4 / five-speed manual...

•Grams per mile of CO2: 404...

•EPA city/highway/combined: 21/25/22 mpg...

Thank you Toyota!

@Dan the man,

Did you mean, stop feeding bob?

They left out 2011 Ranger with ancient 2.3L I-4 gets 22/27mpg. What does the Tacoma have to say now? I guess it doesn't matter since Ford put a bullet in the back of the Rangers head.

yea thats what i meant, these trucks we talk about on this site are no better that the next, we all just make ourselves believe they are, they are all junk or they are the best look at it however you want i know i do, these manufactures could give two shits about me, bob, frank, lou, or who else writes in the stories, the bottem line is i like to come here and see what is new and not about read about some jackass who sees it one way


The topic is 2012 Pickups With the Best MPGs!

The Ranger is a 2011! There is no 2012...

It looks like FORD left out the Ranger... not they!

Too bad Ford could care less about the U.S. market anymore and chooses to shut plants in the U.S. and build new plants abroad!

As oxi wisely said....

Just like GE, Ford will make billions in profits from FOREIGN operations and not pay a single dime in federal taxes!

I am so glad I buy my U.S. built Tacoma, I at least support U.S. workers with my Tacoma purchase!

FACT! GM produces the only V8 engine that makes over 300 horsepower and get's over 20 miles per gallong and that is a cold hard FACT! you want another fact you ford girly men? well here it is, you need a V-6 in a ford to get the milage of GM'S V8 engines. That's right I said it and you know it's true even if you won't admit it.

The EPA doesn't lie and neither do I, 5.3 liter V8 engine is rated at 15 city and 21 HIGHWAY and that is the only V8 engine to be rated that high and in 4 friggen Wheel Drive!!!

ford girly merries, you know you lose to GM AGAIN!

@ Pete - Everyone knows you are another alias for Oxi so stop agreeing with yourself!!! It ruins your otherwise decent posts.

@Mark Williams Paul Flewitt from here posted this on the last Global Ranger thread.
"I just bought the diesel 4X4 SXT supercab ranger, I think it's probaly as close I will get to owning an F150 with out paying 120g to have one imported to aus, it's really good on fuel cruising at 110km it will do 7.4L/100km and it's bigger than my 09 hilux sr5 I traded, only wsh they would put the US style rear sliding window in them"

Converted to US Gallons. That is 31.7 MPG at 70mph.

@Robert Ryan - 31.7mpg just seems a bit too fantastic to believe. Although the old 7.3L diesel was capable of 20+mpg highway so perhaps without the ridiculous EPA emission garbage the Ranger could indeed get such high numbers.

Has anyone seen an analysis of the true reduction in diesel emissions? If the new regulations cut emissions by 25% yet also cut FE by 25% then it's a net losing game.

hahaha....GM wins again and egoboost loses again. now how long will it take for Frank to start crying?

calling all Bob's i just want you guys to know how much i despise GM and Chevys and it is all because of you guys trolling Thanks again for helping me make my next truck purchase PS and it will not be a GM or Chevy

@kansas bob,

Meh! I really don't care about you or any other troll anymore.


what about a Cummins equipped Dodge Ram?

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