Best hybrid cars for commuting

The main reason hybrids exist is to increase the mileage of a car, and to save money on fuel. As such, these cars are the best when it comes to daily commuting, and they work best in urban city driving environments.

An average distance an American drives daily is somewhere around 16 miles which is perfect for a fuel-efficient hybrid car. Buying a hybrid usually means you will spend less time at a gas station, and your wallet is certainly going to feel it.

If you consider that an average hybrid these days is good for around 30 miles of pure electric driving, a gas pump might as well be an occasional stopping point, only necessary when you want to get out of town and go on a long journey.

With this very reason in mind, the Toyota Prius was born, but you can also opt for the Toyota Corolla. If you want an affordable commuter SUV, the Honda CR-V Hybrid is a great choice. If you want a more luxurious commuter, the BMW 3 series or the Volvo XC90 are both great options.

Toyota Prius

The Toyota Prius is more or less the very essence of a commuter car because the Prius singlehandedly started the hybrid trend in the first place. Nowadays, you are getting as much as 58MPG in the city if you opt for the Prius.

Besides the superior efficiency, the Prius is also a fairly well-equipped car with loads of modern-day technology and safety solutions. Interior space is plenty for both the passenger area and the cargo area as well. JBL speakers, Apple Car Play, and Android Auto are all there to make your daily commutes that much easier.

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Toyota Corolla

Even though the Prius is really hard to fault, the Corolla might be a better option for someone who wants a more dynamic driving experience. Even though looks are subjective, I reckon that the Corolla looks way better than the Prius.

That’s the very reason why many online outlets named the Corolla Hybrid the best Green car of the year. The design language the Corolla offers is a bit more daring and sophisticated inside and out. The interior is amply spacious and very well isolated, perfect for busy city streets during rush hour traffic.

Honda CR-V

Daily commuters should not be one-trick poneys, however, it’s always a good idea to buy a hybrid that can easily change its attitude and become a perfect long-distance family hauler. The 40MPG US rating is not as good as the ratings of all of the aforementioned cars, but considering the CR-V is a full-on SUV, such ratings are more than adequate.

The CR-V offers lots of space, a refined cabin, four-wheel drive, and a smooth, yet responsive automatic transmission. Safety-wise, the CR-V ticks all the right options. Technology-wise, the CR-V is loaded. There is a reason why the CR-V is the best-selling SUV of the past decade.

BMW 3-series

The BMW 3-series has always been one of the best all-around cars money can buy, and the latest G20 3-series sedan is an amazing car for anyone wanting a dynamic driving experience that does not sacrifice efficiency, comfort, and technology.

The BMW 330e hybrid has won multiple awards for being the best family hybrid car on the market right now. It is hard to achieve impressive levels of comfort while upholding a dynamic underpinning, but the 3-series does it anyways.

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Volvo XC90

If you are after a comfortable, mid-size luxury hybrid SUV, make sure to check out the Volvo XC90 Hybrid as this handsome Swede is all you will ever need. The XC90 offers a spacious cabin equipped with fine leather and aluminum, wood, or piano black trim.

Great reliability and efficiency are also strong suits of the XC90. Practicality-wise, the XC90 offers ample space for everyone inside, and the trunk space is generous as well. Even though it is not necessarily the best urban commuter size-wise, it comes equipped with all-around parking sensors and it’s fairly easy to see out of.

FAQ Section

Is an EV a better commuter car than a hybrid?

In theory, if you are only going to use your car on regular daily commutes, an EV might even be a better option than a hybrid. However, it’s always good to have a combustion engine to rely on if something does go wrong. Of course, it all depends on the charging infrastructure in your area, and at your home.

In addition to that, if you opt for an EV, you are going to have to schedule all of your trips according to available charging stations. In this instance, a hybrid is a better option as it enables you to be a bit more flexible if something does go wrong.

Do you even need a car if you only drive in the city?

In many places in the world, cars are not your regular commuters. For such purposes, many people opt for bikes, e-bikes, taxis, or even public transportation. If you live in a city such as Amsterdam for example, where lots of people don’t ever use their cars, it’s unnecessary to own a car at all.

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However, if you need to commute a greater distance daily and you don’t have access to reliable and safe public transport, a car is a reasonable necessity. If you do decide to sell your car and opt for a bike, you are most definitely going to save lots of money in the long run.

Why should I skip buying a hybrid?

Even though hybrids are a definite positive in today’s day and age of electric engines, they are not perfect. They cost more money to buy outright, and it sometimes takes years to recoup the extra costs. If you don’t have the ability or intention to utilize the electric engine to its full potential, skipping a hybrid is a good idea.

Furthermore, hybrids tend to cost more money to maintain after a while. Even though batteries are covered by warranty for the first period of ownership, after a while they do tend to lose health, and a full battery replacement can cost a few thousand dollars, even worse, some car batters occasionally even catch fire.

Marko Mikulic

Why do you love writing about cars? I love writing about cars as cars are a huge personal interest of mine. I was raised in a car enthusiast community and ever since I was young, I always wanted to do car-related work.

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