Hybrid SUVs - Not Just Good For the Environment - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Hybrid SUVs – Not Just Good For the Environment

As the world turns to a greener future, the electrification of cars has become increasingly popular. While there are only a few all-electric SUVs in production, hybrid SUVs are everywhere. Even if there wasn’t a global warming crisis, a hybrid engine would be a fantastic route to go. The marriage of a gas-fed engine to an electric motor is a beautiful thing, not only because it delivers kinder fuel economy figures, but because the matrimony also brings wildly impressive power outputs to the table.

As if the addition of partially electrified engines wasn’t enough, buyers can also choose between plug-in hybrids and mild-hybrid SUVs. Still, the title of best hybrid SUV won’t simply depend on who gets the thumbs up from the EPA. You have to consider the car as a whole with everything it offers. This includes space, fuel efficiency, and the quality of the interior.

The Top-Rated Hybrid SUVs of 2020

1. Honda CR-V Hybrid

The Honda C-V has been an American favorite for years, so it’s hardly surprising that the hybrid version is at the top of the list for this segment. Blending affordability with practicality is a perfect recipe for astronomical sales, and that’s precisely what Honda cooked up for the CR-V. It boasts great handling abilities and a comfortable ride. It also has a cavernous cabin for the segment and excellent fuel economy figures. It lacks a bit of luxury, but with a price tag under $30,000 for a hybrid SUV, it’s definitely worth considering.

2. Toyota RAV4 Hybrid:

Toyota was one of the first automakers to make an affordable electrified SUV and with a starting MSRP just upwards of $28,000, the USA took very well to this. Nearly half a million Americans spent their hard-earned money on a RAV4 in 2019. They may have mostly been gas-only models, but the hybrid takes the already impressive model and makes it even better. The standard 219-horsepower hybridized engine gets excellent fuel mileage, and it’s one of the strongest contenders in this category. The interior favors practicality over luxury, but is on par with others at this price point. The RAV4 Hybrid is certainly worth considering.

3. Volvo XC90 Hybrid

This hybrid SUV costs more than double the price of the top two listed SUVs, but it is also twice as luxurious and capable. The XC90 is a delightful experience, and it’s worth the $67,000 base price. It’s not as in-your-face as German contenders are, but the Swedish automaker has gotten understated elegance down to a fine art. The SUV boasts excellent power outputs and impressive fuel economy figures, and the cabin is plush and welcoming. It may not handle a twisty road with the confidence of a BMW X5, but its road manners are also appreciable.

4. Volvo XC60 Hybrid – It’s hardly surprising that another Volvo has made it onto this list, and the XC60 certainly deserves its spot. The plug-in hybrid has combined power outputs of 400 horsepower and 472 lb-ft of torque, and beyond its impressive figures, is decadent inside. The SUV is the embodiment of style and good manners, whether we’re talking about appearances or driving experience. It has a starting price of over $50,000, so it’s not particularly cheap, but it’s worth every dollar spent.

5. Toyota Highlander Hybrid – Another entrant in the top five from the Japanese automaker is the Highlander Hybrid, which is all-new for 2020. Boasting a longer list of standard safety tech than ever before, and seating for up to eight passengers in a plush and spacious cabin, the Highlander also brings class-leading fuel economy to the table, with up to 36 mpg combined earned in independent tests.


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