8 Great Plug-In Hybrids For 2022

Car Culture / 10 Comments

These are our favorite vehicles to help beat the corporate greed.

Our immediate future with cars isn't the all-electric drivetrain; it's hybrid. Anyone predicting that we'll all be driving electric vehicles in ten or twenty years is full of crap. Sure, the take-rate on EVs will increase, particularly in some countries rather than others, but in reality, here in the US, they account for 1% of car sales here in 2022. That's negligible enough that some automakers aren't even bothering with all-electric cars in any meaningful way yet. What most automakers are doing, though, is making and selling hybrids. Even Jeep has gone for it with a hybrid Wrangler, and it's a hit.

If you want to give the middle finger to petroleum companies and their corporate greed, but aren't ready to do battle with public chargers and a spotty charging network, it's time to consider a plug-in hybrid. That way, you get an all-electric range but can switch to hybrid gas and electric power for longer trips. These are CarBuzz's favorites PHEVs for 2022, but not necessarily based on fuel economy - we're looking for a balance between cost-effectiveness and being an excellent car for different lifestyles.

CarBuzz

Toyota RAV4 Prime

Toyota's electrified RAV4 Prime is on the pricey side but delivers value if having a compact crossover with an all-electric range and no penalty on power is important. Its electric and gasoline powertrain combine to generate 302 horsepower and all-wheel drive is standard. It gets 94 MPGe, can run for 42 miles on electric power alone, and yet takes under 6 seconds to reach 60 mph. It starts at $40,300 and for the price, you also get a premium feature set that includes heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, and the Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 suite. In the right mode, it's a quick little crossover, relatively speaking, and has a comfortable ride. The only downside is that the interior isn't the most exciting, but it is well laid out and comfortable for four people.

CarBuzz / Ian Wright
CarBuzz / Ian Wright
CarBuzz / Ian Wright
Toyota

Porsche Panamera 4 E-Hybrid Sport Turismo

If you're complaining about the price of a RAV4 Prime, you won't enjoy the Porsche Panamera 4 E-Hybrid Sport Turismo's $113,000 starting price for the 2023 model. We also don't like the name because typing Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid Sport Turismo over and over again gets laborious. However, it's a Porsche through-and-through with a combined power output of 455 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque from the base model, and grip and handling for days. We got an excellent 37 mpg without trying in the 4S model, and the 4 and 4S can travel 19 miles on electricity alone. The Panamera plug-in hybrid isn't the most fuel-efficient, but it's as good as it gets for the power delivered.

2021-2023 Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid Sport Turismo Front-End View CarBuzz
2021-2023 Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid Sport Turismo Rear-Facing View CarBuzz
2021-2023 Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid Sport Turismo Front Bumper CarBuzz
2021-2023 Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid Sport Turismo Driver Area CarBuzz

Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid

Going in the completely opposite direction to anything Porsche, the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is a fantastic plug-in for a host of reasons that aren't related to power and handling. The Pacifica is the only plug-in hybrid minivan in the US, but it doesn't relax in its class of one. Its $47,500 - $56,050 is affordable in its class as minivans have to deliver a premium experience to sell in this world of three-row crossovers. It's full of features, utility, and practicality, while the battery has enough juice to power the Pacifica for 32 miles without the 3.6-liter V6's assistance. The Pacifica can fully restore its battery in just two hours on a Level 2 outlet, making it perfect for school and activity runs for the kids.

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Hyundai Tucson Hybrid

Where the Hyundai Tucson Hybrid rises above the RAV4 Prime is in styling and infotainment technology, but it lacks a little with its 33-mile all-electric drive range. That will be enough for many people, though, and if so, the Tucson Hybrid is a little gem of a crossover. It's relatively quick, it's comfortable, and its interior space is more generous than you would guess from the outside. The $35,400 SEL trim is well equipped. Still, you'll have to step up to the $43,200 limited trim to match the RAV4 Prime for interior embellishments and the edge in technology, including the surprisingly useful Remote Smart Parking Assist feature.

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Hyundai

Volvo S90 Recharge

Other plug-in hybrid full-size sedans are available, but for a smooth and luxurious treat, we love the Volvo S90 Recharge for something that costs a little over $60,000. Its 400 horsepower and 472 lb-ft of torque are happy to whoosh people around, and a new extended-range battery option boosts power to 455 hp and the all-electric range to a useful 38 miles. The 66 MPGe mixed with Volvo's uniquely comfortable interior and refined suspension sells us on the S90 Recharge. It's not for everyone, but if BMW and Mercedes sedans are too humdrum in the office parking lot, the S90 offers a lot as an alternative to badge buying.

2021- 2022 Volvo S90 Recharge Side Perspective Driving Volvo
2021- 2022 Volvo S90 Recharge Driving Back View Volvo
2021- 2022 Volvo S90 Recharge Side View Volvo
2021- 2022 Volvo S90 Recharge Dashboard Volvo

Audi A7 Hybrid

If you don't want to spend as much as the Volvo S90 Recharge on an executive sedan and want better handling chops, then there's the Audi A7 Hybrid. A 2.0-liter turbo-four works with electric power to make 362 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque while also returning 70 MPGe. As a sporty hybrid premium sedan, we prefer the A7 over the more obvious BMW 5 Series Hybrid for its looks, power, and more engaging drive and interior. At $75,900, the A7 Hybrid commands around a $20,000 premium over the 5 Series Hybrid, though - and Audi's quattro all-wheel-drive system is standard.

2021-2022 Audi A7 Hybrid Front Angle View AUDI AG
2021-2022 Audi A7 Hybrid Side View AUDI AG
2021-2022 Audi A7 Hybrid Rear Angle View AUDI AG
2021 Audi A7 Hybrid Dashboard Audi

Lexus NX Hybrid

The NX hasn't wowed us until recently, and it took a big update in the drivetrains and infotainment system to get us there. The hybrid and plug-in models are now the most compelling option for Lexus's smallest crossover. The plug-in models get a decent all-electric range of 37 miles at just over $55,000. The 450h plug-in delivers 304 hp, and all the NX hybrids have better performance figures and mpg ratings than their gas-only equivalents. For the 450h, that's a combined 84 MPGe if you keep the battery charged. For the latest model, Lexus dumped its awful infotainment system for a fresh Google-based software platform, and it's terrific.

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Dashboard Lexus

Kia Sorento Hybrid

If your family is growing and a minivan is just too uncool for you, then Kia's Sorento Hybrid is a great buy. It'll seat six people, the electric motor with a 1.6-liter turbo-four engine delivers a combined 261 horsepower, and it's good for up to 32 miles on battery power only. The Sorento Hybrid's 79 MPGe is excellent for spacious crossover, particularly one that is aimed at the premium market. Inside, the materials and build quality are excellent, the ride quality is on point, AWD is standard on plug-in models, and it drives like a big car. The Sorento plug-in hybrid starts at $45,190, and its nearest competitors don't offer a third row.

Kia
Kia
Kia
Dashboard KIA

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