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Best High-MPG Used Trucks for 2023


Michelle Bogle
Michelle Bogle | Senior Contributor
December 12, 2023
Young person with curly blonde hair in a yellow t-shirt hops off of the bed of a red truck. A red mountain bike sits in the truck bed and a second person in a red shirt stands in the foreground holding another mountain bike.

Fuel-sipping trucks that don't skimp on power.

Searching for the perfect used truck in 2023 goes beyond horsepower, torque, and towing capacity. It's a pursuit of hidden gems that fuse power, utility, and fuel economy into a robust package that can go further between fill-ups. While some trucks are made for demanding tasks and can be fuel-thirsty, not all fall into that category. Amidst the huge selection of used pickup trucks, specific configurations stand out for their impressive mpg figures, showcasing an impressive range of powertrains that balance power with efficiency.

To help you with your search, we've compiled a list of the 10 most popular high mpg used trucks with CarMax customers. You'll also notice that all vehicles on our list are 2018 models. When we crunched the numbers, this model year came up as the largest sample size in our inventory for the vehicle category. Learn more about how our lists work.

Best High-MPG Used Trucks for 2023

1. Ford F-150

2. Chevrolet Colorado

3. GMC Canyon

4. Ram 1500

5. Toyota Tacoma

6. Nissan Frontier

7. Chevrolet Silverado 1500

8. GMC Sierra 1500

9. Nissan Titan

10. Toyota Tundra

1. Ford F-150

Blue 2018 Ford F-150 Raptor

Topping our list of the best gas mileage trucks for 2023 shoppers is the 2018 Ford F-150. This pickup has graced previous best-of lists for its impressive fuel-sipping performance, and this year is no different.

If you're shopping for a used truck that combines power with fuel economy, look for models with the turbocharged 3.0L diesel-powered V6 introduced in mid-2018. With 250 hp and 440 lb-ft of torque, the 2018 F150's Power Stroke Diesel® is ideal if you do a lot of heavy hauling, with an estimated 11,300-lb towing capacity when properly equipped.

But where the turbocharged 3.0L diesel-powered V6 and 10-speed automatic transmission will also wow you is its EPA-estimated 25 mpg combined with 2WD.
With figures like that, you can focus more on the job than your gas gauge.

The 2018 Ford F150 also stands out with its robust, military-grade aluminum-alloy body and cargo box, designed to tackle demanding tasks without adding extra weight to the truck.

Research the Ford F150.

2. Chevrolet Colorado

Dark green 2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2

The 2018 Chevrolet Colorado tied for first place thanks to its balanced performance. This midsize pickup redefines the norms of gas mileage and delivers a punch in terms of performance. Powering the 2018 model is a robust 2.8L turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine, delivering 181 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. Paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and 2WD, this configuration achieves an EPA-estimated 25 mpg combined.

Additionally, the Colorado's nimble size and carlike maneuverability contribute to its exceptional performance, making it an ideal choice for urban dwellers and outdoor enthusiasts. Plus, utility isn't compromised for gas mileage. The 2018 Chevrolet Colorado's Duramax® 2.8L turbocharged four-cylinder diesel can tow an estimated 7,700 lbs when properly equipped, offering full-size capability in a maneuverable, fuel-sipping package.

Research the Chevrolet Colorado.

3. GMC Canyon

Red 2019 GMC Canyon All Terrain

Zooming into our selection of high-mpg trucks for 2023 shoppers is the GMC Canyon – a standout midsize truck tying for first place. Look for 2018 models with the available turbocharged 2.8L four-cylinder diesel engine (SLE and SLT models) with 181 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. Connected to a six-speed automatic transmission and 2WD, this truck gets an EPA-estimated 25 mpg combined, helping you go longer between fills.

The 2018 Canyon doesn't sacrifice capability despite its impressive gas mileage. Boasting an estimated towing capacity of 7,700 lbs when properly equipped with the available turbo 2.8L four-cylinder diesel, this midsize pickup is a versatile option for tackling demanding tasks while minimizing stops at the pumps.

The interior is also meticulously crafted for comfort and functionality, making the Canyon a great companion for daily commuting and weekend projects.

Research the GMC Canyon.

4. Ram 1500

Black 2021 RAM 1500 Classic Warlock

Revving into the spotlight of high-mpg trucks for 2023 shoppers, the Ram 1500 makes an undeniable mark as a best gas mileage truck. When seeking a used model, cast your eyes on the 2018 Ram 1500 equipped with the 3.0L diesel V6 boasting 240 hp and 420 lb-ft torque (available on all trims except the Express, Night, and Rebel). Paired with the eight-speed transmission and 2WD, this configuration stands out for its commendable gas mileage, achieving an EPA-estimated 23 mpg combined.

This not only empowers you to tackle long journeys head-on but also minimizes visits to the gas station.

Beyond its high mpg estimate, the 2018 Ram 1500 is renowned for its unique coil-spring rear suspension, ensuring a smooth ride without limiting hauling capability. When properly equipped, the 2018 Ram 1500's 3.0L EcoDiesel V6 can tow an estimated 9,210 lbs, solidifying it as a standout option among high-mpg trucks for its performance and capability.

Research the Ram 1500.

5. Toyota Tacoma

Blue 2018 Toyota Tacoma TRD Sport

Steering into the lineup of high-mpg trucks is the Toyota Tacoma – a name synonymous with rugged capability and off-road prowess. If you're eyeing a used Tacoma and craving a fuel-sipping configuration, the 2018 model's 3.5L V6, delivering 278 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque (standard on TRD Sport and higher trims), has you covered. Paired seamlessly with a six-speed automatic transmission and 2WD, this 2018 Tacoma achieves an EPA-estimated 21 mpg combined, ensuring gas mileage without compromising power.

Beyond its impressive EPA estimates, the 2018 Tacoma distinguishes itself with its muscle. All 2018 models feature high-strength steel in the frame and hot-stamped, ultra-high-strength steel in the body for extra toughness at work and play. The 2018 model also has a double wishbone coil-spring front suspension and a leaf spring rear suspension with staggered outboard-mounted gas shocks, elevating the Tacoma's off-road capability.

Research the Toyota Tacoma.

6. Nissan Frontier

Silver 2019 Nissan Frontier

Revving into our list of trucks with the best mpg, the Nissan Frontier emerges as a beacon for truck enthusiasts seeking a manual transmission. The 2018 model, equipped with the 152-hp 2.5L four-cylinder engine, a manual five-speed transmission, and 2WD, not only promises an engaging driving experience but also boasts an impressive EPA-estimated 21 mpg combined.

In addition to its fuel-sipping prowess, the 2018 Frontier is a practical choice for everyday hauling and DIY projects. This midsize pickup is an ideal companion if you need a truck that works as hard as you do. When properly equipped, the 2018 Frontier can tow an estimated 6,640 lbs with its 2.5L four-cylinder and manual transmission configuration, further adding to its utility.

Research the Nissan Frontier.

7. Chevrolet Silverado 1500

Silver 2018 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LT

On the hunt for a used full-size truck that seamlessly marries brawn with gas mileage? Check out the Chevrolet Silverado 1500. The 2018 model, featuring the base 4.3L V6 engine, stands out as a high-mpg champion with an EPA-estimated 20 mpg combined when paired with a six-speed automatic transmission and 2WD.

In addition to its fuel-sipping accolades, the 2018 Silverado 1500's base V6, boasting 285 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque, ensures that it's not just a truck but a well-equipped partner ready to embrace the demands of work and the joys of play. Explore further, and you can find 2018 models with a versatile range of configurations, from the two-door regular cab to the four-door extended cab and the crew cab, offering a standard 6.5-foot bed or an optional eight-foot bed for added utility.

Research the Chevrolet Silverado 1500.

8. GMC Sierra 1500

Dark Blue 2022 GMC Sierra 1500

The GMC Sierra 1500 offers an array of engine options, but if you're looking for a high-mpg performer, the base 4.3L V6 engine does the trick. When paired with the six-speed automatic transmission and 2WD, the 2018 Sierra 1500 returns an EPA-estimated 20 mpg combined, allowing you to focus on your to-do list, not the nearest gas station.

With an impressive 285 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque, the 4.3L V6 effortlessly handles hauling tasks, boasting an estimated towing capacity of 7,600 lbs when properly equipped.

What also sets the 2018 Sierra 1500 apart is its on-road experience. The truck offers a smooth ride and exceptional handling thanks to its suspension system, which soaks up road imperfections. Additionally, the cabin is a peaceful haven, shielded from tire and wind noise, even on the roughest terrains.

Research the GMC Sierra 1500.

9. Nissan Titan

White 2019 Nissan Titan XD

In the realm of powerful yet fuel-sipping full-size trucks, the Nissan Titan stands tall with its standard 5.6L V8 engine. When paired with its seven-speed automatic transmission and 2WD configuration, the 2018 Titan returns an EPA-estimated 18 mpg combined, offering an ideal balance of performance and gas mileage.

Plus, with 390 hp and 394 lb-ft of torque, the 2018 Titan's 5.6L V8 effortlessly delivers on any task, boasting an estimated 9,370-lb towing capacity when properly equipped.

What also sets the 2018 Titan apart is its adaptability. Featuring three distinct cab styles and bed lengths, including a crew cab with a five-foot bed, a single cab with an eight-foot bed, and an extended cab with a six-foot bed, the Titan is a versatile workhorse with practical utility. Whether navigating a bustling job site or embracing the serenity of a campground, the high-mpg Titan is ready for any challenge.

Research the Nissan Titan.

10. Toyota Tundra

Blue 2019 Toyota Tundra TRD

Rounding out our list of the trucks with the best mpg estimates is the Toyota Tundra – a full-size powerhouse equipped with a standard 4.6L V8 engine. The 2018 Tundra, featuring 2WD and an eight-speed automatic transmission, achieves an EPA-estimated 16 mpg combined, showcasing its combination of power and gas mileage.

With a commanding 310 hp and 327 lb-ft of torque, the 2018 Tundra's 4.6L V8 also delivers robust performance with an estimated towing capacity of 6,800 lbs when properly equipped.

Whether you need a spacious cab for your family or crew or a long bed to haul big loads, the Tundra has a configuration that works as hard as you do. The 2018 model is available in Double Cab and Crewmax body styles with three-bed lengths, including a 5.5-foot short bed (Crewmax models), a 6.5-foot standard bed (Double Cab models), and an 8.1-foot-long bed (Double Cab models). SR and SR5 Double Cab and Crewmax models feature six-passenger seating, while the 2018 Toyota Tundra Limited and higher trims with the Double Cab and Crewmax seat five to meet your passenger carrying needs.

Research the Toyota Tundra.

When searching for the most fuel-efficient trucks, you don't have to choose between power and mileage – many models balance both with finesse. From the fuel-sipping capabilities of the Ford F150 to the elegant performance of the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon to the robust powerhouses like the Ram 1500, Nissan Titan, and Toyota Tundra, each truck on our list offers a unique blend of features to match your needs. So, whether you're conquering demanding job sites or enjoying the open road with a trailer in tow, these best gas mileage trucks redefine what it means to get the job done.

Want to learn more? Check out these related articles:

Most Reliable Trucks

Best Used Pickup Trucks

Truck Cab Styles Explained: What's the Difference?

Ask the Expert: Toyota Tacoma vs. Toyota Tundra

Who We Are

At CarMax, we've been buying and selling cars since 1993, and we've made it our business to pay close attention to which cars customers like—and buy—the most. As the largest used car auto retailer in the United States, our overall sample size is large and reflective of the variety of years, makes, and models that we sell.

How We Rank Our Lists

To create this list of CarMax's most popular trucks with the best gas mileage, our analysts looked at CarMax's vehicle and sales data over a six-month period—March 2023 through August 2023—to determine the 10 top-selling trucks. From there, we ranked these results by their trims with the highest EPA-estimated combined MPG. Looking back over a six-month period allows for the highest sample size possible while also providing up-to-date pricing information. Specifically, this list includes only 2018 models, as this was our largest sample size for this category.

Michelle Bogle
Michelle Bogle | Senior Contributor

Michelle Bogle started her career in the car industry nearly two decades ago as a writer for an American multinational automobile manufacturer. Since then, she has expanded her expertise as an automotive journalist, covering vehicle reviews, news, and buying advice to help consumers feel informed and excited about the car-buying process.

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