It’s one of the most useful tools available to Canada’s new-car shoppers, and yet it was posted at the NRCan website without so much as a press release to advise the public.

Published since the 1970s, first by Transport Canada and then by NRCan, this annual guide compares the energy efficiency performance of all light-duty vehicles sold in the country (automobiles and trucks) by providing three measures of fuel consumption: city, highway and the average of the two.

It also includes each vehicle’s carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in grams per kilometre driven and provides ratings on a scale of 1 through 10 for that and for the emission of smog-forming pollutants.

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In the past, Natural Resources Canada organized a press conference to unveil the champions of fuel consumption to the press. As usual, there are champions this year, but no more press conferences.

The list of these champions appeared on the NRCan website at the time the Guide was published. These most fuel-efficient vehicles are those with the lowest combined fuel consumption rating; a rating based on 55 per cent city driving and 45 per cent highway driving.

The award-winning hybrid vehicles, regular and non-hybrid, according to NRCan in 2018 for the following categories are:

  • Two seaters: Fiat 124 Spider (4 cyl., 1.4-litre, six-speed manual)
  • Mini-Compact: Mini Cooper Convertible (3 cyl., 1.5-litre, six-speed manual)
  • Subcompact: Chevrolet Spark (4 cyl., 1.4-litre, five-speed manual and continuously variable automatic (CVT) transmissions)
  • Compact: Toyota Prius C (Hybrid, 4 cyl., 1.5-litre, CVT)
  • Intermediate: Toyota Prius (Hybrid, 4 cyl., 1.8-litre, CVT)
  • Large Sedan: Hyundai Ioniq Blue (Plug-in hybrid, 4 cyl., 1.6-litre, six-speed automatic)
  • Family (small): Kia Niro FE (Hybrid, 4 cyl., 1.6-litre, six-speed automatic)
  • Family (intermediate): Toyota Prius v (Hybrid, 4 cyl., 1.8-litre, CVT)
  • Van (small): Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon (4-cylinder turbodiesel, 2.8-litre, six-speed automatic)
  • Van (large): Ford F-150 (V6, 2.7-litre, 10-speed automatic)
  • Utility Vehicle (Small): Toyota RAV4 Hybrid (Hybrid, 4 cyl., 2.5-litre, CVT)
  • Commercial Vehicle (Large): Lexus RX 450h 4WD (Hybrid, V6, 3.5-litre, CVT)
  • Minivan (tie): Chrysler Pacifica (V6, 3.6-litre, nine-speed automatic) and Honda Odyssey (V6, 3.5-litre, 10-speed automatic)

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In addition, the most efficient plug-in electric and hybrid vehicle in 2018 in the following categories are as follows:

  • Two seaters: Smart Fortwo Electric Drive (electric, 60 kW)
  • Sub-compact: BMW i3 and i3 REx (electric, 125-135 kW, electric on-board generator, 125-135 kW, 2 cyl., 0.6-litre)
  • Compact: Ford Focus (electric, 107 kW)
  • Intermediate: Hyundai Ioniq EV (electric, 88 kW)
  • Large sedan: Tesla Model S 75D (electric, 386 kW)
  • Family (small): Chevrolet Bolt EV (electric, 150 kW)
  • Utility vehicle (small): Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid, 60 kW, 4 cyl., 2.0-litre)
  • Commercial vehicle (large): Tesla Model X 75D (electric, 386 kW)
  • Van: Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid (Rechargeable Hybrid, 89 kW, V6, 3.6-litre, CVT)

Download the 2018 Fuel Consumption Guide or search for ratings for individual vehicles.

(Translation by Chris Chase)