Great website. Been looking it over. Sounds like a CRX HF or Civic VX is the best way to go. Although, I may have a line on a cheap 87 CRX Si. Not sure if I should go this route or not. Lots of posts on different engines. Not sure what they mean for engine codes although I have heard of the B16. I was curious is swapping a CRX HF tranny would help MPG in the Si or even the HF motor with the Si fuel injection. Any thoughts? Thanks.
An 87 is the 1st generation CRX, which swaps from the 2nd gen (88-91) are not bolt in. You could put a VX or 2nd Gen HF engine and transmission in it, but it will require some fabrication on the engine mounts, different axles, and a lot of wiring.
The other car I would consider would be a 3cyl, 5 speed Geo Metro. They did make an XFi version in the early 90s that was a very high mileage car, but good luck finding one.
If I were shopping for a high FE car, I'd look into a 96+ Geo metro. You won't be paying the Honda premium price and you probably could get a clean one with less then 100K miles for around $2500 or less. A 96+ is also OBDII, so a scanguage would work on it.
I have two friends who clame to get up to 40mpg with the CRX SI.
I'd sell you my 1985 CRX HF, with a compleat 2nd engine with a new timing belt and water pump, for $2,000, it's about as light weight as you are going to get.