Best Hybrid Cars For Highway Driving – Traditional gas vehicles tend to have lower fuel consumption for highway driving. Stop-and-go traffic for city driving is generally less efficient than smooth highway driving. However, the opposite is often the case with hybrid cars. Hybrids generally have higher fuel consumption for city driving. Read more to find out why.
Although this is not always the case, highway fuel consumption for hybrid cars is often higher than city driving. For example, the Toyota Prius, the best-selling hybrid of all time, has an estimated fuel economy of 58 city/53 highway mpg for model year 2022. Another hybrid is the 2022 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid crossover SUV. 41 city/38 mpg highway. In contrast, the all-gas variant of the RAV4 gets better highway fuel economy (up to 27 city/35 highway mpg).
Best Hybrid Cars For Highway Driving
First, it helps to understand how hybrid vehicles differ from traditional gas cars. While traditional gas cars have an internal combustion engine, hybrids have an engine, one or more electric motors and a battery. The addition of an electric motor and battery is again the main reason hybrids get good city gas mileage.
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During city driving and light acceleration, the hybrid mainly uses the electric motor. This reduces the load on the petrol engine. As a result, it improves fuel economy. However, for highway driving, hybrids mainly use the engine – and in turn have higher fuel consumption.
Another factor that contributes to the best city gas for hybrid cars is the brake regeneration technology. The friction created by the brakes creates a lot of kinetic energy. For traditional gas vehicles, this energy is lost as they heat up instead of moving, as detailed by KBB.
However, regenerative braking in hybrid vehicles (such as electric vehicles) captures kinetic energy. Then transfer the energy to the battery. Since the brakes are applied more often during city driving, the regenerative braking system gives the hybrid an increase in city mpg. Regenerative brakes usually help the auxiliary functions of the hybrid car, such as climate control and sound systems.
Also, some hybrids have an EV mode. For the EV mode, the hybrid vehicle can drive with electric power for short distances, which improves the city’s gas consumption. EV mode for hybrids is especially useful when you are in heavy traffic and only at low speeds. Some hybrid cars also have an ECO mode to increase efficiency, which reduces engine power and throttle response.
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In addition to selecting EV or ECO mode, there are several measures you can take to improve your hybrid car’s fuel economy. This includes accelerating more slowly, avoiding excessive speed and avoiding sudden braking. Also make sure your tires are properly inflated. Also, taking the most direct route, replacing a clogged air filter, reducing weight in the trunk, and closing the windows at highway speeds also help improve efficiency.
However, you don’t need to drastically change your driving habits. The hybrid system in a hybrid vehicle is designed to maximize fuel consumption. This applies to both city and highway driving. As long as you drive your hybrid at a reasonable speed—and not too aggressively—you’ll be able to get good gas mileage and save money on gas. who doesn’t want to dive in at the deep end with an all-electric car powered by batteries.
Demand for hybrids is growing rapidly, and more car manufacturers are offering hybrid options as well as gasoline and diesel engines.
There are several options available – handy if you prefer to avoid the extravagant styling (or even the Uber driver connotations) of the pioneering Toyota Prius. From the compact Honda Jazz to plug-in hybrid SUVs such as the Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid, there are now electrified models for every taste.
Frequently Asked Questions About Hybrid Vehicles
However, not all hybrids are created equal. We’ve tested models with disappointing reliability, incredibly high emissions, and many that don’t give you the fuel economy they promise when you actually take them on the road.
Get the final verdict on every car we test, on all fuels, with our independent car reviews.
Hybrid cars combine a conventional engine (usually gasoline, but diesel hybrids are also available) and an electric motor. Depending on the type of hybrid, the electric motor can be used with the gasoline engine or for short periods independently, with the aim of saving fuel and reducing exhaust gas emissions.
Below are the best hybrid cars we’ve tested, including the best SUVs, the best budget hybrids, and the best plug-in hybrids (PHEVs). They are all great cars. Not only have they passed the same tests as their traditional gasoline and diesel competitors, but they can also save impressive sums on fuel costs.
The Best Used Hybrid Cars Get High Mpgs For Cheap
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There are three main types of hybrid cars. Which one is best for you will depend on how you use it and – more importantly – if you can easily install a charger at home to charge the battery that powers the hybrid electric motor.
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A full hybrid, also known as a “self-charging” hybrid, is a gasoline (and to a lesser extent diesel) car with a separate battery from the standard 12V car battery. These batteries are charged with the energy collected during braking or idling and are then used to power a small electric motor.
The electric motor can drive the car’s wheels together with the petrol/diesel engine or even independently (though usually only for short distances and at medium speeds).
Electric motors are particularly useful when the car is more efficient in petrol or diesel conditions, such as in back-to-back driving, and can reduce fuel consumption during stop-and-go city driving. Some hybrids also charge directly from the petrol/diesel engine under certain conditions.
Some new full hybrid models use their gasoline engine to simply charge the battery and then use it to drive the wheels, as some manufacturers find this more efficient. In some cases – as in the Honda Civic e:HEV – the petrol engine can drive the drive wheels, for example when faster acceleration is required.
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Plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) – a first in the UK on models such as the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV – have larger batteries than full hybrids and have a longer electric range – typically around 20 to 40 miles . However, to get close to the fuel economy advertised for most models, you need to plug-in to charge as much as possible.
Most PHEV models can also use the engine to charge the battery, but this is more efficient. When the battery is discharged, the PHEV can be used as a full hybrid.
Our research found that compared to fully electric cars, PHEVs use more electricity due to their weight and smaller electric motors. If you can regularly plug in your car at home, you may want to go straight to an electric car.
The amount of time it takes to charge a plug-in hybrid car will depend on the size of the battery and the speed of the electric charger. If you charge at home, it may take several hours. It can last less than an hour in a fast charging station.
Should I Buy A Hybrid Car In 2023?
The main difference between full hybrids and plug-in hybrids is that mild hybrids cannot be powered by electricity alone. The battery is only to assist the internal combustion engine, not to take control. This limits its potential for low CO2 emissions and fuel consumption.
Some give extra power in acceleration; others allow the engine to be turned off during braking or idling to save fuel. A mild hybrid battery can also be used with a regular 12V car battery to power non-engine systems, such as a car’s air conditioning.
You may not notice much difference between driving a mild hybrid and a normal petrol or diesel car. Also, while modern cars turn off the engine while stationary to reduce fuel consumption and pollutants, some mild hybrids will shut down the engine while stationary or braking.
So if you slow down at a traffic light, for example, at low speed, the engine will shut off while you’re moving and won’t restart until you release the brakes.