Best Hybrid SUVs of 2022
With all the hype about new EV models like Tesla, Ford’s F150 Lightning and Rivian’s R1T, it is easy to overlook the other “green” vehicle that outsells all the EVs combined: the hybrid. Straight hybrids (HEVs) and plugin hybrids (PHEVs) combine a battery-powered motor and a gas-fueled engine to create a vehicle that addresses both the cost of operation and ownership and the environmental impact of driving.
Available in virtually every class of vehicle, from compact to pickup trucks, hybrids offer exceptional mileage, lower repair and maintenance costs, and lower emissions, and many new ones qualify for federal tax credits. Moreover, considering the first Prius hit American streets in 1997, the hybrid is now considered a proven technology and has benefited from technological advances that have significantly reduced production costs.
Today, the big selling point is still the excellent mpg ratings coupled with the same ease of fueling as a gas-powered ride. But beyond the obvious advantages HEVs offer, these power plants are packaged in some pretty slick rides. And it doesn’t matter what your preference is — SUVs, luxury rides, trucks, or crossovers, there’s a hybrid version for everyone.
Here are a few of our favorites:
1. Toyota Highlander Hybrid
This three-row, eight-passenger, midsize SUV gets 36 mpg, and unheard-of fuel efficiency for a vehicle of this size. It’s packed with Toyota safety systems like the Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, eight airbags, Automatic High Beams, and much more. Earning an IHS Top Safety Pick+, the Highlander is an ideal ride for larger families.
It’s safe, efficient, sophisticated looking, tows 3500 lbs., and has a history of great resale value. In addition, the Highlander is an excellent example of how a popular gas-powered vehicle can be converted into a cleaner, more environmentally responsible ride.
2. 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid
All new for 2023 (in showrooms now), this compact crossover SUV is an excellent low cost ($28,585), high efficiency (43 mpg), surprisingly roomy, hybrid with a 10-year, 100,000-mile powertrain warranty that has all the makings of being another hit for Kia. Equipped with Kia Wise Driver Assist Technology and a host of convenience and entertainment tech, including Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™, the Sportage packs enough punch and handling creds to make it a genuinely fun-to-drive ride.
3. 2022 Ford Maverick Hybrid
Many compact trucks like the Toyota Tacoma, Nissan Frontier, and Ford Ranger have evolved into midsize pickups leaving only the Maverick and Hyundai Santa Fe as the only options for small truck buyers. That said, the Ford Maverick Hybrid does a credible job of filling the need for an affordable (under $20,000), capable (4.5 ft. bed and 4,000 lb. towing capability), efficient (42 mpg) truck that you can take off-road.
Built on Ford’s C2 platform, the same underpinning as Bronco and Escape, and a suspension tuned for comfort, the Maverick combines the best SUV and light truck features.
4. 2022 Toyota Tundra Hybrid
The first full-size Tundra with a hybrid powertrain, this truck features a muscular design built on a stronger and lighter chassis, with significant interior improvements. Powered by an I-Force Max twin-turbo 3.5L V6 paired with an electric motor that generates 437 hp and 583 lb-ft of torque, the Tundra can tow 11.450 and haul 1,685 lbs.
Packed with safety and connectivity technology, including adaptive cruise control, surround-view camera, 14-inch touchscreen, and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the hybrid Tundra puts Toyota back in the hunt in the full-size truck segment.
5. 2022 Lexus ES 300h Hybrid
While it is unquestionably a luxury ride with its spacious, ultra-comfortable cabin, sleek, sophisticated design, and high-end convenience features, the ES 300h has two very unlike luxury-class characteristics; a starting price of $42,975 and a hybrid powertrain that yields 44 mpg. The Lexus ES has been a class-leading model since 2019, thanks to its excellent build, reliable technology, comfortable ride, and effortless handling.
Toyota, the parent company, has hybrid engineering down pat and has created a high-value, environmentally responsible luxury sedan that is a hit with the market and has a remarkable resale history.
6. 2022 Lexus LC 500h Hybrid
At the other end of the Lexus luxury stable is the LC 500h luxury coupe that starts at $100,125. The LC can best be described as a luxury grand tourer ride. Weighing over 4,000 pounds, the suspension is surprisingly engaging, providing a smooth, satisfying handling experience. The hybrid powertrain generates an impressive 354 horsepower and can propel the two-ton LC from zero to sixty in a respectable 4.4 seconds and still deliver a 29 mpg fuel rating.
It’s a Lexus, so everything about it says top-notch with exceptional attention to its build and design. If you have $100,000+ to spend on a car, you would be hard-pressed to find a better value than the Lexus LC 500h.