Compare the best large hybrid SUVs
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Best large hybrid SUVs of 2023
A large hybrid SUV is arguably the best hybrid choice, as bigger cars have more room to package batteries and fuel tanks, and still leave enough space for people and luggage. Here are ten of the best hybrid SUVs on sale - covering both plug-in hybrids that can cover over 20 miles on battery alone and need plugging in and recharging, and so-called ‘self-charging’ hybrids that have a small battery capable of running the car at low speed and gather energy under deceleration or via the engine.
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It’s probably a straight tie between the Kia Sorento and the Hyundai Santa Fe. Both are based on the same chassis, and both offer the same choice of hybrid or plug-in hybrid powertrains. Both also have excellent interiors, but it’s the Kia that’s narrowly our choice, simply because it’s better-looking on the outside.
Find out more: What is a self-charging hybrid?
The BMW X5 xDrive40e is really hard to beat, as it has an impressive electric range of up to 55 miles, and a buttery-smooth straight-six petrol engine for longer journeys. Yes, it can get a bit thirsty on a long haul after the battery is used up,, but the upside is proper BMW steering and handling. It’s not bad looking, either.
Find out more: What is a plug-in hybrid?
As ever, that answer depends on the model you’re looking at, but the average is around 40 miles now. Some can manage more, such as the Mercedes GLE 350de (62 miles), but remember that your real-world range will almost certainly be lower, unless you’re very good at hypermiling.
In terms of official economy figures, it’s the Mercedes GLE 350de diesel plug-in hybrid, with an economy figure of 353mpg. That’s entirely dependent on how far you can run it on battery alone of course, but it looks good on paper. More realistically, a Toyota RAV4 can easily manage 50mpg on a long run, if you’re reasonably careful.
To find out how you can improve the fuel efficiency of your SUV, check out our guide on ways to get better mpg.
The answer is the new Range Rover P440e plug-in hybrid, which offers a massive 725 litres of luggage space, or 1,050 litres if you stack it to the roof. If you’re looking for something a little more affordable than that, check out the Kia Sorento’s 608-litre boot.
Find our top recommended cars with bags of space in our guide on the best cars with big boots.
It depends on the model, of course, but mid-size hybrids such as the Kia Sorento can tow as much as 1,650kg, while heavier plug-in models such as the Citroen C5 Aircross can haul up to 1,300kg. The champs in this respect are the Audi Q7 TFSIe and the Volvo XC90 T8 PHEV which can both tow as much as 2,700kg.
A lot of hybrid SUVs can’t mix both batteries and seven seats, but the best two that can are the Volvo XC90 T8 plug-in hybrid, and the Kia Sorento, both in hybrid and plug-in hybrid form. Both are massively roomy, with the Volvo having an edge on third-row seat space, but the Kia of course being much more affordable.
Check out our recommended 7-seater hybrid cars.
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