Choosing the right hybrid
Hybrid cars are becoming a more common sight on UK roads as many seek eco-friendly means of travel. Coming with a range of benefits such as higher fuel economy figures and bundles of advanced technology, the hybrid generation is now in full swing.
The used car market has plenty to choose from, including SUVs, estates and hatchbacks, meaning there's sure to be a hybrid that's suitable for your lifestyle.
To make things easier, we've split our recommendations into three categories, dependent upon which type of hybrid powertrain they possess:
- Mild Hybrid (MHEV): A small battery assists the engine to lower emissions.
- Hybrid (HEV): A self-charging vehicle that switches between petrol and battery power.
- Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV): A vehicle that can drive on all-electric power for longer than a HEV, but doesn't charge itself.
Best Used MHEV Cars
MHEVs are a great choice if you're after a simple, yet effective, hybrid. Using a small battery pack to assist the internal combustion engine, MHEVs often offer better fuel economy figures than their petrol or diesel rivals, whilst not costing as much to buy as HEV or PHEV alternatives.
When Ford reintroduced the Puma in 2019 it was an instant hit thanks to its sporty styling and good value for money. In its new crossover SUV guise, the Puma offers high levels of practicality as well as an engaging drive.
The MHEV EcoBoost powertrain offers a combined power output of up to 153bhp dependent upon specification as well as fuel economy figures of approximately 50mpg. This allows you to enjoy the performance when driving in a spirited manner, but save money on fuel when cruising.
It also comes loaded with technology as standard. Features such as cruise control, rear parking sensors and lane keeping aid make life easier, whilst Ford's popular SYNC 3 infotainment system allows you to seamlessly adjust settings when on the move.Search Used Ford Puma
Another SUV, the Tucson combines a distinctive exterior design with a MHEV powertrain to complete an excellent all-round package. One major benefit of the Tucson is that it offers four-wheel drive availability as well as the choice between a manual or automatic gearbox.
Hyundai have ensured the Tucson is up to everyday life, with the MHEV powertrain offering around 50mpg which is impressive considering the size of the car. It isn't quite as dynamic as some rivals, but it's ideal for a family thanks to a large boot and excellent safety rating.
Features such as 'Rear Sleeping Mode' allows the family to relax even further; front passengers can listen to music without disturbing the rear passengers.
If you like the look of the Tucson but want something that produces even fewer emissions, then don't fear as HEV and PHEV variants are also available.Search Used Hyundai Tucson
As a rival to other popular MHEV hatchbacks such as the Ford Focus and Hyundai i30, the Kia Ceed is a great option if you're after something highly reliable. Kia are so confident, in fact, that they issued every Ceed with their industry-leading 7-year warranty too, meaning you will have years of stress-free motoring even on used examples.
The Ceed comes with the signature 'tiger-nose' grill, as well as various eye-catching colours to suit your preferences. It's also highly practical, offering a 395-litre boot which is more than some cars from the class above.
The 1.6-litre diesel MHEV powertrain is ideal for travelling long distances; as is the interior and technology provided. Lane keep assist, cruise control and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto all come as standard, ensuring maximum focus can be kept on the road at all times.Search Used Kia Ceed
Best Used HEV Cars
HEVs, otherwise known as self-charging hybrids, are most suitable for those that want a hassle-free experience. They can seamlessly switch between power from the electric motor(s) and internal combustion engine, or utilise both at the same time. You'll also have a short all-electric driving range to enjoy.
The Toyota Prius has long been in the hybrid game and is particularly popular amongst taxi drivers and families thanks to its impressive fuel economy figures and comfortable interior.
They're not the most exciting to drive - 0 to 62mph takes around 11 seconds - but they do come with plenty of gadgets to allow you to enjoy your time behind the wheel. Features such as adaptive cruise control and a rear view camera come as standard.
When driving around town at speeds of up to 36mph you'll be able to enjoy driving in all-electric mode to reduce running costs even further. Exceed this speed and the internal combustion engine will smoothly kick in and work in tandem with the electric motor to maintain optimal efficiency.Search Used Toyota Prius
As direct rival to popular superminis such as the Ford Fiesta and Vauxhall Corsa, the Renault Clio has fierce competition. But it ensures it stands out from the crowd by offering something most rivals cannot: an all-electric driving range of up to 35 miles.
When you do need to call upon the internal combustion engine, the E-Tech hybrid system can return an impressive 64.2mpg WLTP combined.
It also looks great whilst doing so, there's very little visual difference between an E-Tech and a regular Clio, meaning you can still enjoy the chic aesthetics supplied by the French manufacturer.
For the sportiest looks, you'll want to go for an R.S. Line example as they get a number of R.S. Line exterior enhancements. Don't ignore the entry-level specifications however; coming with equipment such as cruise control and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) as standard, they're great value for money.
Search Used Renault Clio
Another great hybrid from Toyota, the C-HR is a mid-size crossover SUV with sharp exterior styling and an efficient HEV powertrain. You'll have a couple of options to choose from; the 1.8-litre provides better fuel efficiency whilst the 2.0-litre offers more dynamic performance.
Inside the cabin you'll be greeted by good levels of practicality as well as a comfortable ride. Whilst it looks great, the sloping roof line means headroom in the rear may be restricted for taller passengers.
The C-HR is also kitted out with bundles of the latest safety equipment and advanced technology, as well as an eye-catching dashboard design. A reversing camera and cruise control come as standard, but opting for a higher specification grants the driver with features such as satellite navigation.Search Used Toyota C-HR
Best PHEV Cars
PHEVs are a great option for those looking for greater all-electric range than what HEVs offer. Whilst you'll go further when driving in the emissions-free mode, you will need to plug the vehicle in to recharge the batteries.
BMW 3 Series
BMW have long been known for manufacturing luxurious cars that are fantastic to drive. The plug-in hybrid 3 Series, titled the 330e, looks very similar to a standard 3 Series, doing without the UFO-like styling many hybrid and electric cars now possess.
But don't let its aesthetics fool you into thinking the 330e is any less advanced than rivals as it comes with plenty of useful gadgets that make hybrid ownership that bit easier. BMW ConnectedDrive is just one example, providing digital services to help you optimise fuel efficiency and maintain battery charge.
Being a PHEV, you'll also be able to enjoy over 30 miles of all-electric range, which is enough for the daily commute or school run for most. When using the internal combustion engine, the 330e also offers fuel economy figures of over 200mpg with the batteries fully charged, reducing running costs even further.Search Used BMW 3 Series
As one of the best all-rounders out there, it comes as no surprise to see the Volkswagen Golf feature on this list. With a classy interior and stylish exterior aesthetics, the Golf is slightly less expensive than rivals such as the Mercedes A-Class A250e.
The Golf offers an all-electric range of up to 44 miles; one of the highest of any PHEV currently available. This means that most shorter journeys can comfortably be completed using battery power alone. When you run out of juice, charging takes around three to five hours dependent upon which type of cable you use.
Alternatively, you can allow the intelligent hybrid system to do its thing; offering up to 235mpg when using both the internal combustion engine and the electric motor.
In terms of equipment, a class-leading infotainment system with smartphone integration can be enjoyed on all models, but opting for a higher specification gives advanced features such as traffic jam assist and adaptive cruise control.Search Used Volkswagen Golf
If you liked the premium features of the BMW 3 Series, but are working with a smaller budget, then the Skoda Superb may be of interest. The Czech manufacturer have long been producing cars that are excellent value for money, but the PHEV version of the Superb is one of their best.
Entry-level models do possess an interior that you're more likely to expect for the price point, but higher specifications have interiors and technology that can rival the likes of the 3 Series whilst still being cheaper. The Superb's boot is also huge, making it ideal for families with a lot of luggage.
Leather seats and satellite navigation are just a few examples of what kit you can find on used examples. Safety is also excellent, coming with advanced driver assistance systems such as lane and blind-spot assist.
An all-electric range of around 35 miles is also enough to see the Superb compete with more expensive alternatives.Search Used Skoda Superb
Find your next hybrid with Evans Halshaw
From small city cars, to large family SUVs, manufacturers from around the world have put their stamp on the hybrid market. With such a vast array of options available, there's sure to be a hybrid car that suits your lifestyle.
If you'd like to test drive any of the mentioned models, or want some help finding a hybrid that's right for you, then contact our friendly associates at your nearest Evans Halshaw dealership.