In 2015 the sedans were sold for the first time in the USA. By 2019 SUVs accounted for more than double the number of . Therefore, it should come as no surprise that more and more automakers are ditching sedans in favor of SUVs.
The compact plug-in hybrid SUV sub-segment is one of many where manufacturers have opted to ramp up production. It has also seen increased sales with buyers looking to have the benefits of an SUV and excellent fuel economy. If you’re one of those shoppers, here are the three best compact plug-in hybrid SUVs to buy, according to MotorTrend.
Despite being surpassed by the Jeep Wrangler for the first half of 2022, it still ranks at the top of the compact plug-in hybrid SUV segment. One of its main advantages is the excellent all-electric driving range at an EPA-estimated 42 miles.
Technology is another of its strengths, with Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 now included as standard. With it, drivers get features like auto high beam, blind spot monitor, traffic sign assist, pre-collision assist, rear cross traffic alert, etc.
Considering the 2022 variant was on the list without some of these standard features, this improvement could mean even better safety ratings for the 2023 model year.
On the outside, it offers an attractive design and while the car is relatively compact, you still have enough cargo space for most of your needs. All of this should make the high base price worth mentioning.
2. 2022 Ford Escape plug-in hybrid
The Ford Escape PHEV gets the second-highest MotorTrend rating despite an economical interior and lack of an AWD option. This is thanks to high levels of fuel efficiency, outstanding technology and value for money.
As far as fuel efficiency is concerned, buyers can get up to 117 MPGe in the city. On the highway, they get 93 MPGe for a total of 105 MPGe, putting it on par with some all-electric vehicles. The electric-only range is 37 miles.
As for the technology, Ford’s Co-Pilot360 collection of safety technology comes standard with features like automatic emergency braking, automatic high beams, rear cross traffic alert and blind spot monitoring. The top-of-the-line titanium trim adds a few extras, like semi-autonomous parking assist.
Add in the low starting price, and potential buyers have one more reason to consider it.
3. 2023 Hyundai Tucson Plug-in Hybrid
For a plug-in hybrid, it doesn’t offer the best fuel efficiency, but in its place, buyers get great technology along with impressive performance. That said, you still get far better fuel economy than a gas-only SUV at 80 MPGe, not to mention an all-electric range of 33 miles.
Standard AWD certainly helps with performance, with the car’s powertrain capable of producing 261 hp. It can also put out 258 lb-ft of torque, making it quite lively on the road.
As for the technology, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, blind spot monitoring and automatic emergency braking are all standard. That said, choosing the more expensive Limited trim, you may get extras like highway driver assists, surround view monitors, parking sensors, etc.
The Tucson PHEV could move higher in the MotorTrend charts with just a little more than .
Taken together, these three options explain why it’s the plug-in hybrid compact SUV to buy. Toyota’s offering is an easy choice if you’ve got more of a budget to work with and want both performance and fuel efficiency.
If your budget is tight, but you still want performance, you can choose the Hyundai Tucson Plug-in Hybrid. However, you will have to sacrifice some efficiency. Finally, the Ford Escape PHEV may not be the fastest of the lot, but it’s affordable, has plenty of standard technology, and has impressive fuel economy figures.