The outstanding fuel economy of Honda’s hatchbacks has been verified after the Japanese car maker scooped three awards in the annual MPG Marathon.

Honda’s Civic diesel hatchback claimed the overall winner’s prize in this year’s event, as well as best mpg percentage improvement, while a 17-year-old first-gen Honda Insight topped the heritage category after coming second place overall.

Held in the middle of October, the two-day eco-driving challenge pushes real-world fuel economy to the limit with drivers tasked with working out the most economical route between a number of waypoints across Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Shropshire, Northants and Warwickshire, starting and ending at the Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel near Coventry.

This year’s event saw the fuel-sipping 1.6 i-DTEC Civic record an impressive 87.53mpg over 331 miles – an uplift of 8.5 per cent on its officially-quoted combined NEDC figure of 80.7mpg.

Meanwhile, the 2001 Insight achieved 84.8mpg over 360 miles.

Behind the wheel of the Civic was BBC transport correspondent Paul Clifton, who has become a habitual participant over the years.

Paul comments: “Amazing result for the Civic diesel, and for me personally; I’ve won two years on the trot, and taken at least a class win seven years out of nine. It was a difficult and hugely entertaining event to do.

“There’s no secret trick to this – the aim is to travel in the highest gear at the most economical speed, using energy as efficiently as possible.”

Alex Grant, editor of Fleet World magazine, which organises the event, said both cars performed exceptionally well despite tough conditions on both days.

“It proves that Hondas old and new can still set high benchmarks for the competition, no matter what the journey throws your way,” he added.

Visit www.thempgmarathon.co.uk for more detail on the event.

Heather Stark, brand manager at The Fuelcard People, said: “Honda has always had a reputation for delivering super-economical cars and this event highlights this strength yet again.”

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