Looking for an eco-friendly ride but not ready to go electric? With Australian road infrastructure slow to catch on to the all-electric trend, a hybrid car offers the best of both worlds. Seeking for lower emissions than a traditional petrol or diesel option without sweating it between charging points, more Australians are turning to hybrids to save money and the planet. We’ve got your guide to the best hybrid cars on the market in Australia today.
Lower emissions in the city—the best urban hybrid options
Some of the first hybrid models in Australia were designed for inner-city driving. The first hybrid to go mainstream, the Toyota Prius, became the model of choice for inner-city taxi drivers, and dominated a lonely hybrid market much derided by petrol-loving Aussies from the early 2000s. They’ve since converted legions of fans and been joined by a swathe of more recent options such as the Honda Accord Hybrid and another Toyota hybrid option, the Toyota Corolla.
Hybrid hatchbacks make great commuters with cheaper running costs, easy parking and possible government subsidies to reduce the purchase price upfront (check your state or territory government transport department to explore your local options). With most major car manufacturers offering at least one small hybrid model, other notable compact hybrid options include the Hyundai Ioniq and the luxury BMW i3. Looking for something faster? BMW has you covered with a bonafide hybrid sports car, the BMW i8.
Full-sized comfort—the best hybrids for families
Think hybrid is just for hatches? Think again with a range of full-sized sedans such as the Toyota Camry now being offered with a hybrid engine. If luxury is your thing, you’re spoiled for choice with hybrid options from Lexus including the GS450H and IS300. Volvo also offers hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) options such as the Volvo S60. Mercedes-Benz offers many of the sedans in its range with hybrid fuel engines, including the Mercedes-Benz C200.
Hybrids go off-road—the best hybrid SUVs
Hybrid vehicle technology has come a long way, and it’s set to go even further with new SUV and off-road-capable hybrid models coming onto the market every year. Continuing its dominance in the hybrid engine domain, Toyota offers a hybrid RAV4. From the broader Toyota family, Lexus offers the RX400H hybrid. Mercedes has been extending its hybrid range in recent years, with SUV models such as the GLC300E. You can slash your fuel bills even further with the PHEV Mitsubishi Outlander offering battery recharging at home from your wall socket as well as recharging while driving.
In the fast-growing small SUV category, Volvo is continuing to set new standards in SUV luxury with PHEV models of its popular XC40 and XC90 SUVs. However, the small SUV market looks set to leapfrog hybrid on its way to all-electric, with most new eco-friendly small SUV models, such as the Hyundai Kona, leaving petrol behind for good.
Ready for eco-friendly motoring? Check out all the hybrid and electric cars for sale on Gumtree.