In 2022, gas prices are higher than ever before. As a result, many car buyers are looking for solutions with hybrid, electric, or even plug-in hybrid vehicles. However, not every hybrid is going to be worth the savings. Some hybrid versions of vehicles are far more expensive and don’t help with fuel economy as much as you’d expect. Consumer Reports compiled the seven hybrids that will save you the most money on gas. These hybrid models pay for themselves much faster than others.
Consumer Reports’ method for finding the money-saving hybrids
Consumer Reports calculated the payoff time of owning each hybrid by using $5 per gallon of gas. Then, it compared the gas price to the vehicle’s sticker price for the hybrid version and the most comparable non-hybrid variant. As CR stated, there’s also a chance dealer markups on vehicles skew the numbers. Every model in this list also received the Green Choice designation from CR, highlighting cars with the cleanest emissions.
It’s also worth noting that more and more automakers are releasing electric vehicles. Moreover, for maximum fuel economy savings, you can stop using fuel altogether. CR says its analysis shows up to $10,000 in fuel and maintenance costs annually over the life of an EV. This becomes helpful quickly as electric models still tend to cost much more than gas-powered cars.
1. 2022 Lexus NX
The Lexus NX luxury compact SUV gets 37 city and 39 highway mpg. Consumer Reports says it’s at its best as a hybrid model. Best of all, it costs less than the standard model, by $175, CR says. Calculating the savings over time, about $800 per year is no longer donated to gas stations. The hybrid version of the NX also “feels more refined during daily driving,” according to CR.
2. 2022 Ford Maverick
As the first pickup truck to come with a standard hybrid powertrain, the Maverick is a no-brainer. On average, the compact truck gets 33 city and 39 highway mpg. Comparatively, the gas-only engine costs $1,000 more than the standard hybrid. As a result, the savings begin before you leave the dealer. CR says Ford Maverick owners will save around $1,000 annually on gas by buying the hybrid over the gas-only turbo four-cylinder.
3. 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe
Firstly, the Santa Fe fuel economy averages about 23 city and 37 highway mpg. The midsize SUV is at its best in the hybrid form. CR says there are many reasons other than fuel savings to buy the hybrid Santa Fe. For example, the hybrid powertrain is faster and more silent than the gas-only version. Moreover, CR says it found the standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder “a bit weak and noisy.” Furthermore, the added weight and different tires give the Santa Fe Hybrid a smoother ride than its alternative. Consumer Report’s testing revealed a $500 annual fuel savings.
4. 2022 Toyota Highlander
The 2022 Toyota Highlander is one of the top-ranked three-row midsize SUVs on Consumer Reports rankings. It’s also one of the best models to buy hybrid instead of with the standard gas-only engine. First, purchasing the hybrid gets you 27 city and 41 highway mpg. However, the hybrid does cost around $1,620 more than the regular Highlander, but after only two years, owners will see savings. CR calculates about $1,000 per year of savings in fuel.
5. 2022 Honda Accord
For the 2022 model year, Honda’s midsize car averages 40 city and 52 highway mpg in its hybrid form. As a result, buyers will see savings two years after their purchase. Spending around $660 less each year on gas, the Accord hybrid is an excellent investment. CR also noted that the Accord benefits from a strong take-off and road/wind noise isolation when using the hybrid powertrain.
6. 2022 Honda CR-V
As the second Honda on the list, the compact SUV is surprisingly well-rounded. It gets 32 city and 37 highway mpg, which is excellent fuel economy for a vehicle of its size. In addition, it received a phenomenal predicted reliability rating from CR. After about three years, owning the hybrid version will begin to pay off. It costs around $1,200 more than the gas-only model but will save you about $430 per year on fuel.
7. 2022 Toyota RAV4
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The RAV4 is one of the most popular vehicles in the world. This compact SUV competes with the Honda CR-V and other outstanding competition and usually comes out on top. Moreover, it gets 32 city and 41 highway mpg in its hybrid form. While it costs $2,084 more than the standard model, it’ll result in a $601 difference yearly for gas expenses. Like its rival, it’ll take around three years to be worth the price in savings.
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