SMALL Hybrid cars
Best SMALL Hybrid cars...
1. BMW i3
...Best small hybrid for range
The BMW i3 is an electric car first and foremost, but the i3 Range Extender, as the name implies - utilises a little two-cylinder petrol engine to help recharge the batteries while you're on the move and add around 70-80 miles to your range, meaning the BMW i3 REx (short for range extender) could be capable of hitting 200 miles with a single charge.
Although the i3 was first released in 2014, it still seems at the brink of cutting-edge today. With its funky looks and uncluttered, Tardis-like interior it certainly feels modern, and still very different to almost anything else on the market. It’s surprisingly quick too thanks to the powerful batteries.
2. Toyota Yaris Hybrid
...Best small hybrid for the city
The smart looking Toyota Yaris offers big car build quality, with small car simplicity and ease of use. The hybrid system can run the car for short distances at slow speed on purely electric power which, if you can make the most of it, means you'll rarely be using much fuel, if any at all. However as soon as you stop using the battery power fuel economy begins to suffer quite dramatically.
Real world testing in mixed conditions show that it’ll only achieve around 52.9mpg, which is pretty low when you consider this is a hybrid. If fuel economy is not everything for you though, the Yaris does deliver when it comes to being a small car. It's very suitable for driving around congested city centres, and it's also one of the cheapest options on this list.
3. Suzuki Swift Hybrid
...Best small hybrid car for value
As if being great value wasn’t good enough, the Swift is also good fun. Responsive steering and nimble cornering mean that it's enjoyable to zip through a series of bends. The limited amount of power means that it never feels terrifying.
The hybrid system doesn't affect the car a great deal, as it's only a ‘mild’ hybrid, which means that the motor and batteries aren't as large as those in the other cars on this page. This means that the system can’t drive the car on pure electricity, but it boosts power when accelerating hard. Real world economy figures of 50mpg prove that it can be fun, frugal, and good value.
Used deals from £8,999
4. Volkswagen Golf GTE
...Best small hybrid for performance
Hybrid cars are typically associated with green motoring, but Volkswagen is looking to promote more a sporty image by dropping its hybrid tech into the Golf GTI, and calling it the Golf GTE.
Where hybrid cars use the electric motor and engine to provide power when accelerating, the Golf GTE is incredibly snappy off the line. However, the extra weight that comes from the battery does mean that its actual 0-62mph time isn't quite as fast as the solely petrol-powered GTI.
If you're looking for a hybrid that keeps its identity pretty well hidden from the outside though, the Golf is definitely a solid option.
Used deals from £14,000
5. Lexus CT
....Best small hybrid for upmarket feel
Lexus is renowned for its build quality and reliability, and regularly tops the table in customer satisfaction surveys.
With that in mind, the Lexus CT is a little pricier than the Toyota Prius, even though it shares some mechanical parts. But it’s easy to see what the extra money gets you. Inside there’s a plush interior with soft plastics and buttons that feel well put together. On the outside, big alloy wheels can be had to make it look more fashionable.
It only has one engine available (1.8-litre petrol linked to a hybrid) and an automatic gearbox, which is quite loud. It’s also not the last word in tranquillity, as inside the road noise can be intrusive.
Used deals from £10,750
Efficient petrol hybrid system
Excellent reliability record
The Lexus CT is certainly an interesting car with, several elements to challenge in the premium hatchback market – especially now that there’s so much uncertainty about diesel variants. It rather blots its copybook with its on-road characteristics and clumsy media system, but low running costs and exemplary reliability will be appealing to many consumers.
6. Mini Countryman Plug In Hybrid
...The Mini Countryman small crossover is available as a plug-in hybrid, meaning you can charge up at home and start every day with a full battery for around 26 miles of silent, zero-emissions progress. Yet performance is eager, too, with a punchy three-cylinder petrol engine working in tandem with the electric motor to create combined power output of 224bhp. Prices for the Mini hybrid start at around £32,000 in the UK.
Charging the 7.6kWh battery from the mains provides a 25-mile pure electric range, in theory. Once your e-juice runs dry, there’s a 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbo engine to keep you motoring, and recharge the battery in combination with kinetic energy captured from braking. Mini claims it’s the perfect car for zero emissions urban commuting during the week, and long-distance cruising at the weekend. Read on to find out if we agree.
7. Suzuki Ignis
...There are few parts of the car market that hybrid powertrain still has left to reach in one form or another. The cheap, cheery, compact and versatile Suzuki Ignis shows you how lightly it can be worn by a new car, and yet how much it can do even in its mildest forms to enhance a car’s driving experience.
Suzuku’s latest ‘SHVS’ hybrid system is one of the market’s simplest, lightest, smallest and cleverest: a 12-volt system incorporating a belt-driven starter-generator motor in place of a regular starter motor, and a secondary lithium-ion battery. As well and starting and stopping the engine in traffic, it assists the car’s 1.2-litre engine under acceleration (filling in the low-rpm torque that normally aspirated motors struggle to produce) and captures energy under light deceleration.
8. CITROËN REVOLTE
...Revolte is a compact, ultra-chic city car that combines luxury with a touch of sass. Its plug-in hybrid drivetrain shows its forward-thinking credentials.
The modern character of the Revolte is expressed through provocative styling inspired by one of its most celebrated ancestors: the 2CV. But the Revolte doesn't simply stick to tradition. We reviewed every aspect of the legendary 2CV to create the Revolte's own distinctive, contemporary look.
With its strong lines, compact dimensions and sculpted flanks, the Revolte flouts the well-known rules of the luxury world. Its contemporary styling is closer to an executive vehicle. Low-set, sitting squarely on its four wheels, the Revolte makes light work of urban driving and gives a lively, responsive performance.
The Revolte concept car shuns conventional car styling. Its distinctive design features strongly marked wheel arches, a curving bonnet and sculpted flanks for a dynamic, powerful look. Its bodywork is strikingly different too - an intense, radiant violet.
9. Audi A3 Sportback 40 e-tron
...The Audi A3 Sportback e-tron is a plug-in hybrid version of the regular A3. So, rather than having just a conventional petrol or diesel engine, this combines a petrol engine with an electric motor and a relatively large battery. ... On the contrary, you have to look very hard to tell the e-tron apart from a 1.4 TSI.
- Good economy
- Impressive acceleration
- Comfortable ride
The Audi A3 Sportback e-tron is a plug-in hybrid version of the regular A3. So, rather than having just a conventional petrol or diesel engine, this combines a petrol engine with an electric motor and a relatively large battery. That means it can do almost 30 miles on electric power alone, and when the batteries have no power left, the petrol engine kicks in, allowing it to recharge the battery or drive the car and give a healthy overall range.
10. Smart Micro Hybrid Drive
...This hybrid concept car allows an important reduction in terms of consumptions and emissions, aorund 12% in comparison with the diesel and fuel version. The Fortwo hybrid diesel concept that combines an 800cc three-cylinder engine, an electric motor and a nickel-metal-hydride battery pack. Combined output is 72 hp, with 118 lb-ft of torque. Fuel economy is a sensational 97 miles per gallon. Acceleration from zero to 60 mph takes a leisurely 15.8 seconds, with top speed limited to 84 mph.
Price: £8,700* Engine: 1.0-litre 3cyl, 71bhp* Transmission: Five-speed semi-auto, rear-wheel drive* 0-62mph: 13.3 seconds* Top speed: 90mph* Economy: 65.7mpg* Standard equipment: Stability control, air-conditioning, twin airbags, panoramic roof, CD player, central locking, electric windows*
11. Clio E-Tech
...The new Renault Clio E-Tech supermini features a petrol-electric drive system with F1 technology. On this evidence at least, the new Cliopromises to be by far the best small hybrid car on offer. Its supremely clever, but slightly busy-feeling powertrain makes the supermini refined and punchy.
The Renault Clio E-Tech Hybrid is a vehicular Rubik’s Cube. It seems straightforward at first; it’s a small five-door hatchback that’s now offered with a full hybrid powertrain, consisting of an auto gearbox, 1.6-litre petrol engine and an electric motor to help keep emissions down and performance up. Or, to be a little more precise, CO2 of less than 90g/km (precise efficiency figures have yet to be confirmed) and power of 138bhp.
And that’s all you really need to know. You don’t need to know that it has a ‘clutchless’ dog gearbox derived from Formula One tech. Nor that it has two electric motors – one driving the car, a second that functions as a brake-regeneration module, starter motor and occasional power booster.
12. Panda Trussardi
...Original, unique, surprising. And now also glamourous. Flaunt the elegance of your New Panda Trussardi on the urban runway and get ready to amaze everyone.
Why follow fashion when you can drive it? Get on board the New Panda Trussardi and show off all your style and elegance with the new dedicated paint and the exclusive Trussardi logo on the alloy wheels, third rear window and side molding.
Drive into a world of benefits with the Panda’s new hybrid engine.