Fuel-Efficient Exotics

© Ferrari S.p.AHigh-Performance Efficiency
As any auto aficionado knows, exotic sports-car adulation usually focuses on power, performance and prestige — not fuel economy, which falls short of zero-to-60-mph times and pure driving pleasure. But high performance results in a heavy thirst at the pump, and exotics from Ferrari, Bugatti and Lamborghini post some of the lowest EPA fuel-economy ratings. However, some exotics and ultra-luxury cars achieve respectable fuel economy when cruising at highway speeds — not the same level as a compact hybrid, but good enough to put a few extra miles between fuel stops during a road trip. The following exotic sports cars and ultra-luxury models are EPA rated at or above 20 mpg on the highway, but keep in mind that actual results may vary — usually depending on the amount of lead in a driver’s right foot. Vehicles are listed by EPA highway fuel-economy ratings.

© General MotorsChevrolet Camaro ZL1
12 mpg city / 20 mpg hwy / 15 mpg combined
Although not typically classified with exotic sports cars, Chevrolet’s powerful Camaro ZL1 takes things to a totally new level. The ZL1 gets motivation from a 6.2-liter supercharged V8 engine that puts out an incredible 640 horsepower and 640 lb-ft of torque. This big engine is teamed with either a 6-speed manual gearbox or a new 10-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters. Performance stats are impressive — a sprint to 60 mph takes a mere 3.5 seconds. The new ZL1 has a lower grille opening, a new hood, a larger front splitter, wider fenders, a wing-style rear spoiler and 20-inch forged aluminum wheels. The Camaro ZL1 achieves an EPA rating of 20 mpg highway; with the 6-speed manual transmission, the city rating jumps to 14 mpg and the combined rating to 16 mpg.

© Aston MartinAston Martin Rapide S
14 mpg city / 21 mpg hwy / 17 mpg combined
The Aston Martin Rapide S is a fast, luxurious sedan with an incredibly sleek profile. Recent updates included a more aerodynamic rear decklid and a new single-piece aluminum grille. The 6.0-liter V12 engine now produces 552 horsepower and is combined with the new Touchtronic III ZP 8-speed automatic transmission. The Rapide S will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4.2 seconds and reach a top track speed of 203 mph. Rapide S combines sports car performance with a smooth ride and a luxuriously handcrafted interior with seating for four. All that and the potential for 21 mpg highway — call it exotically elegant efficiency.

© Aston MartinAston Martin Vanquish S
13 mpg city / 21 mpg hwy / 16 mpg combined
The second-generation Aston Martin Vanquish S is powered by 6.0-liter V12 engine that produces 568 horsepower and is combined with the new Touchtronic III ZP 8-speed automatic transmission. The Vanquish S features a new aerodynamic package that includes an exposed carbon-fiber front splitter and exposed carbon-fiber rear diffuser. New quad exhaust outlets are added and options include carbon-fiber hood louvers, forged 5-spoke diamond turned wheels and a choice of painted graphics packages. The suspension has been retuned with new spring rates, new dampers and anti-roll bar bushings. Inside, the Vanquish S can be personalized with ‘Filograph’ quilted leather and a choice of new materials such as Satin Chopped Carbon Fiber.

© Ferrari S.p.AFerrari GTC4Lusso T
15 mpg city / 21 mpg hwy / 17 mpg combined
For 2018 Ferrari introduces the GTC4Lusso T, the first-ever Ferrari 4-seater powered by a V8 engine. The rear-wheel-drive GTC4Lusso T gets motivation from a twin-turbocharged 3.9-liter V8 engine that produces 600 horsepower and 560 lb-ft of torque. Highway fuel economy jumps to 21 mpg — an increase of 4 mpg over the previous GTC4Lusso, which was powered by a 680-horsepower 6.3-liter normally-aspirated V12 engine delivering power through a high-tech all-wheel-drive system.

© Ford Motor CompanyFord Shelby GT350
14 mpg city/ 21 mpg hwy/ 16 mpg combined
The original Shelby GT350 dates to the racing version of the Mustang in 1965, and the new Ford Shelby GT350 shows the level of performance possible with the application of racing technology that builds on the current Mustang. This new version is basically a track car made street legal, featuring a MagneRide suspension, lightweight aluminum hood, stiff alloy wheels and a driver-oriented cockpit. At the heart of the GT350 is the most powerful normally-aspirated Ford production engine ever — a 5.2-liter V8 putting out 526 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque. The fact that this powerful Mustang can achieve more than 21 mpg is nothing less than remarkable.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLamborghini Huracan
14 mpg city / 21 mpg hwy/ 17 mpg combined
The Huracan may be at the entry point of the Lamborghini lineup, but it is a vehicle worthy of this legendary marque. In keeping with Lamborghini tradition, the Huracan is a 2-seat sports car with the engine located behind the driver. While the Huracan can hold its own at the track, like its predecessors it is designed as a road car. Simply because it’s easy to drive and offers reasonable fuel economy doesn’t mean it makes sacrifices in performance. Huracan features a 5.2-liter V10 engine putting out 610 horsepower to all four wheels — good enough to reach 60 mph in around three seconds, with a top speed in excess of 200 mph.

© MaseratiMaserati GranTurismo
13 mpg city/ 21 mpg hwy/ 16 mpg combined
Nothing compares to driving an Italian sports car, and the Maserati GranTurismo certainly doesn’t disappoint. This 4-seat coupe will turn heads with its elegant lines and — if the beautiful styling doesn’t attract — passersby will definitely notice the sound. The exhaust note on this Maserati is one of the best sounds in the auto industry, emanating from the Ferrari-built 4.7-liter V8 engine. The GranTurismo’s 454 horses are enough to reach 60 mph in about 4.5 seconds while returning more than adequate fuel economy for machinery of this magnitude.

© Mercedes-Benz USAMercedes-Maybach S600
13 mpg city / 21 mpg hwy / 16 mpg combined
The flagship of the S-Class line, the Mercedes-Maybach S600 is so luxurious the owner might as easily be found in the back seat as in the driver’s seat. When equipped with the Executive Rear Seat Package, the Maybach S600 offers lounge seats with padded footrests, pillowed head restraints, multiple massage functions, and heating or cooling. The Maybach S600 is powered by a twin-turbo 6.0-liter V12 engine producing 523 horsepower and 612 lb-ft of torque combined with a 7-speed automatic transmission; it will accelerate from zero to 60 mph is 5 seconds with a top track speed of 155 mph. Given all that power and 21 mpg highway, owners will likely opt for the driver’s seat.

© Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLCRolls-Royce Dawn
13 mpg city/ 21 mpg hwy/ 15 mpg combined
A super-luxury 4-seat convertible, Dawn joined the Rolls-Royce lineup as the seventh-generation Phantom was phased out. Many people may imagine a typical Rolls-Royce experience consisting of a hired driver behind the wheel as an owner sits sequestered in the vast luxury of the rear seat negotiating billion-dollar business transactions, or hiding from the paparazzi behind designer sunglasses. But Rolls-Royce reps envision the Dawn as a more “social” ownership experience, with the owner behind the wheel and room for not only a front-seat passenger, but also a rear seat that delivers a no-compromises luxury experience for two additional adult passengers. Powered by Rolls-Royce’s twin-turbo 6.6-liter V12 engine producing 563 horsepower and 575 lb-ft of torque at 1500 rpm, Dawn is Rolls-Royce’s most powerful full 4-seat drophead offered to date.

© Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLCRolls-Royce Wraith
13 mpg city/ 21 mpg hwy/ 15 mpg combined
Historically the name Rolls-Royce has been associated with luxuriously large sedans piloted by snooty chauffeurs. The brand has evolved over the years, and recently debuted the all-new Wraith. This uniquely-styled fastback is the most powerful car ever from Rolls-Royce, sporting a 6.6-liter V12 engine that produces 624 horsepower. Weighing in at more than 5,000 pounds, the Wraith can still reach 60 mph in a mere 4.4 seconds. The 8-speed automatic transmission helps with fuel efficiency, which explains how this cruiser can achieve up to 21 mpg.

© Audi of AmericaAudi R8 V10
14 mpg city / 22 mpg hwy / 17 mpg combined
The 2-seat, mid-engine Audi R8 flagship sports car reigns supreme atop Audi’s lineup of high-performance machines. Previously offered with the choice of V8 or V10 engines, the 2017 Audi R8 is offered exclusively with a normally-aspirated 5.2-liter V10 producing 540 horsepower and 398 lb-ft of torque, combined with a 7-speed S-tronic dual-clutch transmission. Power gets directed to all four wheels via Audi’s legendary quattro all-wheel-drive system, which provides excellent traction even in adverse weather conditions. Even with all this motive force, the R8 still manages an EPA-rated 22 mpg highway. The new R8 V10 has a low, wide stance accentuated by a large honeycomb grille. Audi’s headlights provide a signature look at night, and laser lighting is available for maximum visibility and range — identified by a blue anodized strip in the headlights.

© General MotorsChevrolet Corvette Z06
15 mpg city/ 22 mpg hwy/ 18 mpg combined
Corvette has been the flagship sports car of the Chevrolet lineup since its introduction in 1953, so to say that this Corvette Z06 is the most capable production ‘Vette ever is pretty significant. The Z06 has performance stats and specs that put it in leagues with some of the most exotic sports cars on the planet. Power comes from a 6.2-liter supercharged V8 engine producing 650 horsepower. Sixty mph comes up in less than 3 seconds, the quarter mile is dispatched in less than 11 seconds and the Z06 can stop from 60 mph in less than 100 feet. Add to that a highway fuel economy rating of 22 mpg and it becomes a very impressive package. With the automatic transmission, highway rating jumps to 23 mpg, but city drops to 13 mpg and combined to 16 mpg.

© FCA USDodge Charger SRT Hellcat
13 mpg city/ 22 mpg hwy/ 16 mpg combined
A Dodge Charger is another unexpected addition to this list of exotic sports cars, but the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat is an awe-inspiring machine from SRT. Powered by a supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI Hellcat engine that produces 707 horsepower and 650 lb-ft of torque, combined with a new TorqueFlite 8-speed automatic transmission designed to handle all that grunt, the Charger SRT Hellcat achieved 11.0 second NHRA-certified elapsed time in the quarter mile and is capable of a top speed of 204 mph. The suspension is specially-tuned with adaptive shocks, and the front-brake package is the largest ever offered by Chrysler Group with 15.4-inch Brembo two-piece rotors and 6-piston Brembo calipers.

© Ferrari S.p.AFerrari 488 GTB / Spider
15 mpg city / 22 mpg hwy / 18 mpg combined
A direct descendant from the first mid-engine V8-powered Ferrari 308 GTB that debuted more than 40 years ago, the 488 GTB executes on that simple formula to the extreme. Powered by a turbocharged 3.9-liter V8 that puts out 660 horsepower and 560 lb-ft of torque at just 3000 rpm, the 488 GTB will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in less than 3 seconds and reach 125 mph in just over 8 seconds on its way to a top track speed of 205 mph. The design is aggressive but extremely clean. Out on the highway, the 488 GTB will cruise at 22 mpg — a number never dreamed of with the original 308 GTB.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-AMG GT S
16 mpg city / 22 mpg hwy / 18 mpg combined
AMG has been the specialty arm of Mercedes-Benz for years, building high-performance versions of the brand’s luxury models. But in the last few years AMG has been building standalone models such as the current AMG GT S. With classic sports car styling in a modern design, the AMG GT S is ready for the road or track with a powerful 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 putting out more than 500 horsepower. The quick-shifting 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox delivers excellent performance as well as more-than-respectable fuel economy. Driver and passenger ride in a beautiful but functional cabin, complete with Nappa leather trimmed sport seats, a high-end Burmester sound system, and an available panorama sunroof.

© Mike Meredith, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-AMG SL65
13 mpg city / 22 mpg hwy / 16 mpg combined
For more than 60 years, the Mercedes-Benz SL roadster has been one of the most admired and sought-after convertibles on the road, and today’s high-performance Mercedes-AMG versions push the SL straight into supercar territory. At the top of the line is the AMG SL65, powered by a hand-built 6.0-liter AMG biturbo V12 that produces 621 horsepower and 738 lb-ft of torque, combined with the AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS 7G-TRONIC transmission designed to handle that massive grunt. The AMG SL65 will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds with top track speed limited to 186 mph. Remarkably, the AMG SL65 will cruise at 22 mpg on the highway — and if 577 horsepower is enough, the AMG SL63 powered by the 5.5-liter AMG biturbo V8 is rated at 25 mpg highway.

Newspress LtdFerrari California T
16 mpg city/ 23 mpg hwy / 19 mpg combined
With pricing at $198,973, the California T is the least expensive entry into Ferrari ownership — in fact, it is the only new Ferrari with a base price below $200,000. But a “base” Ferrari is still worlds above most other sports cars. Named for the open-top Ferraris from the 1950s, the California T features a retractable hardtop that opens in 14 seconds. The California reaches 60 mph in considerably less time — about 3.5 seconds — thanks to the 3.9-liter turbocharged V8 putting out 553 horsepower.

© Jaguar Land Rover North AmericaJaguar F-TYPE SVR
15 mpg city / 23 mpg hwy / 18 mpg combined
For 2017 Jaguar adds the F-TYPE SVR at the top of the F-TYPE lineup, powered by a 575-horsepower supercharged 5.0-liter V8 engine capable of a top track speed of 200 mph. The F-TYPE SVR delivers power to the ground through an all-wheel-drive system and will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. The F-TYPE is already one of the most beautiful cars on the road today and the F-TYPE SVR pushes the performance envelope further with a 50-horsepower increase over the F-TYPE R, as well as additional aerodynamic enhancements.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMcLaren 570GT
16 mpg city / 23 mpg hwy / 19 mpg combined
The McLaren 570GT is the latest model to join the McLaren Sport Series, designed to be more of a sports car than a supercar and more usable day-to-day than previous McLaren models. That said, the 570GT still incorporates race car technologies and supercar levels of performance. The 570S is powered by a new version of its 3.8-liter twin turbocharged V8 engine — with 30 percent new components — that has a 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 putting out 562 horsepower and 443 lb-ft of torque. Power gets directed to the rear wheels via a quick-shifting 7-speed gearbox. Performance numbers are in line with some of the fastest production cars on the road: 60 mph comes up in just 3.3 seconds and 100 mph in 6.6 seconds. The lightweight carbon fiber MonoCell II chassis keeps the overall weight low, and the interior has more of an emphasis on usability with improved access, a higher level of refinement than other models and more storage space.

© Nissan North America, Inc.Nissan GT-R NISMO
16 mpg city / 23 mpg hwy / 19 mpg combined
The current Nissan GT-R arrived in the States in 2008, but the car was already legendary among enthusiasts, who had put many virtual miles on “Godzilla” via Gran Turismo on Sony PlayStation. And while it can be difficult to live up to a virtual legend, the GT-R accomplishes that — and more. The GT-R NISMO was added as a 2015 model, bumping the grunt up to an even 600 horsepower delivered through a 6-speed dual-clutch transmission and sophisticated all-wheel-drive system. Handling and acceleration are in line with exotics costing several times the price, and the GT-R NISMO will return 23 mpg highway during an extended road trip.

© Porsche Cars North AmericaPorsche 911 Turbo S
19 mpg city / 24 mpg hwy / 21 mpg combined
One of the most legendary sports cars of all time on the street or the track, the Porsche 911 continues to push the performance envelope. The first 911 Turbo debuted in the 1970s and today all 911 trim levels are powered by turbocharged engines, with the 911 Turbo S sits at the top of the model range. The Turbo S is powered by a 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged horizontally-opposed 6-cylinder unit producing 580 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque or 553 lb-ft of torque on overboost. Power is delivered through a 7-speed PDK transmission and active all-wheel drive, with zero to 60 mph achieved in only 2.8 seconds on the way to a top track speed of 205 mph. On the highway the 911 Turbo S will cruise at 24 mpg.

© Bentley MotorsBentley Continental GT V8 S
15 mpg city / 25 mpg hwy / 19 mpg combined
The Bentley Continental GT is an ultra-luxury coupe that really started the resurgence of Bentley when it debuted 15 years ago as a 2003 model. Massaged and refined over the years, the Continental GT has retained its distinctive styling and in 2013 the 500-horsepower V8 version joined the lineup alongside the 567-horsepower W12. Today the Continental GT V8 S is powered by 521-horsepower turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine combined with an 8-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive. With 502 lb-ft of torque on tap, the Continental GT V8 S will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds and achieve a top track speed of 192 mph. Perhaps most impressive, this 5,000-pound car is rated at 25 mpg highway.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBMW i8
28 mpg city / 29 mpg hwy / 28 mpg combined / 76 mpge
BMW’s high-performance plug-in hybrid sports car, the i8 looks like a futuristic concept car but still delivers the performance to challenge other sports cars. The rear wheels are powered by a 228-horsepower 3-cylinder turbocharged engine, while the front wheels get motivation from a 129-horsepower electric motor. Combined output of 357 horsepower and 420 lb-ft of torque moves the AWD i8 to 60 mph in around 4 seconds. The i8 doesn’t look like anything else on the road with its sleek silhouette, big wheels, narrow grille and crazy aerodynamic angles at the rear. The unique scissor doors lift and pivot upward toward the front, and the doors don’t swing out much farther than standard car doors. On the highway the i8 is rated at 29 mpg, but the city rating is equally impressive at 28 mpg.


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