Best Hybrid Cars For Commuting – Top 10 Best Plug-in Hybrids to Buy in 2023 The plug-in hybrid market has grown rapidly in recent years. These are our electrified favorites
Not everyone is ready to take the plunge with a fully electric vehicle, which makes a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) a great ‘stepping stone’. What’s more, with more manufacturers joining the PHEV arms race, there’s now a wide variety of models to choose from – whether you want an SUV, sedan, wagon or hatchback, there’s an option for you. A list of the best plug-in hybrids to buy will confirm this.
Best Hybrid Cars For Commuting
There are many reasons to switch from a combustion engine car to a hybrid, whether you want to reduce your carbon footprint, take advantage of government incentives, lower tax rates or simply prefer plug-in power. A hybrid car.
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A wide range of vehicles now offer the option of plug-in hybrids, meaning there are PHEV options to suit buyers from a range of markets. This also means that buyers will have more difficulty choosing the best plug-in hybrid car for them. Our goal on this site is to help by describing the market and giving you an opinion on the best plug-in hybrids you can buy.
So which PHEV do we recommend? Now that there are so many on offer we can give you our top 10 picks, scroll down to see our favourites.
The Mercedes C-Class is an excellent executive sedan that combines comfort, refinement and sophistication. It may not be as sporty as some of its rivals like the BMW 3 Series and Jaguar XE, but it feels more exclusive inside. This is especially true of the PHEV, which is refined when powered by a 127 hp electric motor.
And to answer those naysayers who don’t go far enough with plug-in hybrid charging, Mercedes installed a 25.4 kWh battery – larger than the battery in the original Nissan Leaf. That’s enough to give the C 300 e an official EV range of over 60 miles, making 40-50 miles of emission-free driving realistic in most conditions. In fact, not only is it suitable for most people’s daily driving, but it can also hold a good bite on long journeys.
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The electric motor is mated to a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine, which produces 201 hp for a total of 308 hp. It’s quite quick, accelerating from 0 to 100 km/h in 6.1 seconds, but the C 300 e feels really sporty on a straight line. The engine is quiet when it starts and is easily drowned out by the Burmester hi-fi.
One of the few downsides is the price – which, like most Mercedes models, has risen significantly recently, meaning you’ll be paying around £50,000 before options and/or packages are added.
Since the BMW 3 Series was already the top choice among families and company car drivers, a plug-in hybrid version was always a logical step. BMW intended to launch the current generation car as a plug-in from the start, so the platform was developed with the powertrain in mind.
As a result, passenger space is less affected, but boot capacity drops to 375 liters compared to the standard saloon’s 480 litres. If you want more space, it’s worth noting that unlike the previous generation, the 330e is now available as a Touring Estate for the first time. Plus, the recent facelift means the 330e looks better than ever, even if it’s a little annoying to see the climate controls switch to the new touchscreen infotainment system.
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As has been the case throughout the life of the current-generation version, the key to the BMW’s appeal is its excellent chassis. Sure, the PHEV powertrain adds extra weight, but the 3 Series still handles well and the ride is smooth.
Company car buyers enjoy lower costs thanks to emissions of 37 g/km. BMW claims that it is possible to cover 36 miles on electric power alone, and it takes five and a half hours to charge from a three-pole socket.
Spending more than £40,000 on a Kia might seem ridiculous, but the Sportage PHEV really lives up to its price tag with plenty of refinement, a strong tech offering and a dash of style. However, for those opting for company cars, the electrified Sportage will prove a more affordable option with its 43-mile electric-only range and 25g/km CO2 emissions at 8 per cent in-kind tax. Band, a close Hyundai Tuscon PHEV couldn’t make it.
The electric motor, 13.8kWh battery pack and 1.6-litre in-line four-cylinder petrol engine combine nicely but deliver very quick performance, with a power output of 261bhp taking the relatively powerful Sportage from 0 to 100km/h in 8. , 2 seconds.
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As with all versions of the Sportage, the interior is one of the real highlights of the car. The two 12.3-inch screens – one for the stunning infotainment system, the other for the digital instrument panel – are placed side by side to give the impression of a single unit, but the content quality is excellent.
With more space than the competition, lots of thoughtful features and a comfortable interior, the Škoda Octavia is our favorite car. For the first time, this generation is also available with plug-in power, thanks to the powertrain familiar to Volkswagen Golf GTE owners.
The 1.4-liter turbo gasoline engine and small electric motor together produce 201 hp and 350 Nm of torque. That’s enough for a respectable 0-62mph time of 7.8 seconds, but the Octavia iV’s EV range of 34 miles is even more remarkable. This means that the Škoda can drive four adults and all their luggage in and out of the city without any exhaust emissions.
Official figures are 282mpg and 22-33g/km CO2, which is sure to appeal to company car drivers looking for less compensation in kind. The 1.5-liter petrol will cost half as much as the Octavia’s equivalent.
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We found 30 miles to be easily achieved in all but cold weather, and it only took three hours to charge the battery using the wall box. This makes it easy for many owners to start the day with a full range EV or even a top-up at work for the drive home.
One thing we should note is that Škoda has temporarily withdrawn this car from sale due to a backlog at the time of writing, so if you want one, it may take some patience.
BMW already has a PHEV version of its excellent 5 Series, under the 530e badge, but the arrival of a six-cylinder petrol engine in its 545e xDrive plug-in makes for an even more impressive machine. Not only is it more powerful – with a combined 387bhp and 600Nm of torque – but the silky smooth 3.0-litre petrol makes the transition between electric and combustion power seamless.
The 11.6 kWh battery is smaller than the one offered by the C 300 e, but it’s enough to give the BMW 33 miles of electric power. This increases its fuel efficiency to 166mpg and, for the Executive class, reduces CO2 emissions to around 40g/km.
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One benefit of the smaller battery is the weight savings, because unlike most PHEVs, the 545e xDrive is still an impressive car to drive. It feels like a balanced, agile sedan, with damping carefully tuned to ensure excellent body control without an overly firm ride. There is also a manic growl from the engine under acceleration.
It’s tempting to put the plug-in hybrid version of the revolutionary new Range Rover Sport on this list, but its Range Rover Sport sibling is more luxurious, while being cheaper and slightly sharper to drive.
Similar to the full-size PHEV range, the plug-in Range Rover Sport pairs a 3.0-litre straight-six petrol engine with a 38.2kWh battery (31.8kWh useful). It offers an impressive theoretical electric-only range of up to 70 miles, according to lab results, though we expect more than 50 miles in real-world conditions.
The PHEV can be specified in two guises – the P510 is good for 503bhp and 700Nm of torque, achieving a 0-62mph time of 5.4 seconds, while the P440e returns a still healthy 5.8 seconds with 434bhp. -62mph figure. Be warned, though, that it costs less than a ‘real’ Range Rover, it’s far from a cheap car. Even the less powerful P440e starts at around £100,000 and, when optioned, most will exceed that mark.
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This plug-in hybrid version of the NX is mechanically similar to the Toyota RAV4 PHEV, sharing a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine, two motors, and an 18.1 kWh battery. The Lexus Premium is worth it, though, thanks to its excellent interior.
The cabin offers a different, arguably classier space than its German rivals, and the new infotainment setup is a big step up from the outgoing setup with its awkward-to-use trackpad controller. It’s a smart-looking car from the outside as well.
The engine, motors and battery pack a combined 305bhp, which can knock the NX from 0 to 100km/h in just 6.3 seconds. Meanwhile, electric-only range is up to 40