As gas prices continue to rise to the moon, there is going to be a new standard for automakers to meet. If you’re like most of us these days, you’re probably on an extremely tight budget and looking for a vehicle that’s both fuel-friendly and affordable.

After searching through our extensive catalog of reviews, we’ve identified five brand- new vehicles to steer your way. To make our list, we only had three qualifications. The vehicle had to be no more than $20,000, it had to achieve 40-mpg (miles per gallon) in the city or highway based on the government’s measurements and it needed to seat a minimum of four occupants.

Well, this meant that a number of those premium priced hybrids and two-seater vehicles like the smart car didn’t make the cut. Yet, we managed to find four vehicles to fit the bill and one that we squeezed in, since it almost hit all three of our targets.


Hyundai Veloster

It’s the latest Hyundai to join the ranks. This three-door Hyundai is not only sporty, but fuel-efficient too. It’s actually number one on our list due to the funky styling. Pricing starts at around $18,000 and in-car technology includes a Pandora streaming radio and Bluetooth connectivity. You can throw-in a panoramic sunroof , fog lights, a premium 6-speaker sound system and a sunroof for just a hare over $20,000. Oh yes and the vehicle has a world-class warranty, too.

Honda Civic HF, (pictured above)

Honda’s HF Civic lists for $20,245. This no fills vehicle provides an extremely roomy interior along with all the basic functions one has come to expect in a Honda. Don’t expect a roof or satellite radio in this vehicle. There are no factory options to add to this vehicle.

Toyota Prius C

Toyota’s Prius C, a five-door subcompact, is the only hybrid to make our list and it’s the newest five-door addition to join the brand’s line up. The vehicle has a starting price of $19,710. In addition to offering the 53 miles in the city and 46 on the highway, the vehicle has Bluetooth connectivity and USB outlets. The vehicle will arrive in showrooms next month.

Kia Rio5 hatchback

The Rio5 is the first Kia to offer Idle Stop and Go, which shuts down the engine when the car is idling and restart the vehicle when the brake pedal is released, improving the fuel-economy. Base price starts at $14,350. However, for an additional $4,000 you can upgrade to LX trim, which offers an-house system for text messages, a rear view camera, automatic headlights and 15-inch tires.

Chevy Cruze Eco

This is the only four-door in the group. The Chevy Cruze Eco model barely made the cut. At a price of $21,020, it’s just 1-mile shy of achieving the 40 mpg highway stipulation. The front seats are roomy and the Cruze is the only vehicle is the only vehicle that includes a 6-month subscription for turn-by-turn radio and a 3-month subscription to satellite radio.

Jeff Fortson is an auto analyst and editor of a car-buying website for women and minorities. To learn more about his popular car-buying workshop and/or to price a new-vehicle, drive on over to Follow him!/JeffCars/.