The Essentials

Road Trip on One Tank of Gas

I’m still a big fan of the one tank great American road trip — a fun journey you could make from any city — and return — using just one tank of gas. It’s the concept of getting off the main freeways and interstates, using the two lane state and county roads, and rediscovering America on manageable two and three day trips.


My first one tank trip was back in college, in an old VW bug, which went from zero to 60 in about 10 minutes. It was a struggle, but I still remember it fondly. I was reminded of that trip recently, because this year, VW is halting production of the iconic Beetle. That is truly the end of an era.


At the same time, Ford and GM are no longer making many of their mid-size sedans.


And so, after all these years, the one affordable car that remains for that one tank trip, and it’s actually been around for quite some time — is the Toyota Corolla. Its new hatchback model has a 460 mile range, which makes the one tank trip easily, safer, and a lot more comfortable.


So, the one tank trip is, thankfully, still alive.