What is the most automotive fun you can have while getting 30+ MPG?

While it might be a desirable attribute in the car you drive every day, fuel economy is not usually one of the features that keep you up at night lusting after your dream car. In the wake of rising gas prices and the associated hysteria we want to know what you think is the most automotive fun you can have in a car capable of 30+ MPG?

Few people drool over a car because of the gas mileage it produces. Good fuel economy is sometimes a fortunate attribute of the cars we love but is rarely the reason we've considered putting a cash value on body parts to own one. Boasts of excellent fuel economy have a different place in the automotive world than impressive 0-60 times and beautiful exhaust notes. With rapidly increasing gas prices, we are left to wonder what car can easily put a smile on your face without causing a painful grimace when it's time to refuel.

My answer to this question should really be a 2011 V6 Ford Mustang, but it's not. While 300+ horsepower with a 31 MPG highway rating is a perfect choice, I'm not sure I would be able to choose a V6 over the 5.0 V8 (even hypothetically) and the Mustang is really far too obvious (and reasonable). My pick is a 1980 BMW 320i.

When gas prices started to rise last time, I turned in my fairly new and far too reliable Toyota Tundra and purchased a 320i. Although the E21 model is the ugly duckling of the BMW 3 series family and the car was painfully slow at highway speeds, I got a regular 30+ MPG and had a blast driving back roads for the price of about 4 Tundra payments. Although I will be riding out the high fuel prices with my fleet of gas guzzlers this time around, the idea of another 320i remains appealing and still very affordable.

I told you about the new Mustang old BMW I'd pick to put a smile on my face while passing the pump, what is the most automotive fun you can have while getting 30+ MPG?

(Photo Credit: Permanently Scatterbrained)