Mazda Named Most Fuel-Efficient Car Manufacturer In the United States by the EPA

With ever-stringent emission standards, automakers found themselves in a position where turbocharging and downsizing seemed to be the best way to go forward. While turbocharging technology is fine and all, especially due to the added torque, the downsizing trend never quite cut the mustard.
Mazda U.S. lineup 6 photos
Photo: Mazda
Mazda SkyActiv TechnologyMazda SkyActiv TechnologyMazda SkyActiv TechnologyMazda SkyActiv TechnologyMazda SkyActiv Technology
Take each and every 1.0-liter three-banger turbo out there as a case in point. In a car such as the Fiesta or Corsa, the performance is superior if we are to compare downsizing’s darling to a 1.4-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder mill. But as far as reliability and fuel economy are concerned, N/A seems to be the better bet. In an ironic twist of fate, real-world emission testing could reverse the downsizing trend in the near future. But among automakers who embraced downsizing in the last years, Mazda veered away from this trend.

In Europe, for example, Mazda has two naturally aspirated powerplants: a 1.5-liter SkyActiv-G (75, 90, 101, 115 or 131 PS) and a 2.0-liter mill with 120, 145, 160 or 165 PS. In the United States, the Japanese brand has 2.0- and 2.5-liter variants of the SkyActiv-G engine with up to 184 horsepower on tap. Rated by the EPA as much as 37 mpg highway, it is extremely clear that Mazda gave naturally aspirated powerplants another chance while the rest of the automotive industry continues to consign them to the history books.

And for the fourth year running, Mazda reaps what it had sown by betting big on natural aspiration. According to the EPA’s most recent light-duty fuel economy trends report, Mazda is the most fuel-efficient auto manufacturer in the U.S. Just how efficient? 29.6 mpg for the Japanese company’s fleet-wide adjusted fuel economy, thus leading the ranking for the 2015 model year.

“Using our unique SkyActiv Technology, Mazda has been able to achieve class-leading fuel efficiency in nearly every segment it competes in while remaining true to its core mission that Driving Matters,“
explained Masahiro Moro, chief executive officer of Mazda North American Operations.

So there you have it, boys and girls. No hybrid or electric vehicle in its lineup (save for the Toyota Prius-enhanced Axela Hybrid in Japan), yet the most fuel-efficient manufacturer in the United States. How about that?

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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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