We’re fast approaching the end of 2017; a year that’s seen lots of new developments and plenty of new cars in the auto industry. It’s been a year where many manufacturers have made a clear effort to bring out ‘cleaner’ cars. We’ve seen a whole host of hybrid and electric cars from some of the biggest names in this industry.
Today, we separate the best from the rest and look at the top hybrid/electric cars that have been released this year. They’re not in any particular order, but you can bet these are the best ones out there.
Tesla Model X
If you’re looking for a fast car with a green engine, then the Tesla Model X is right up your street. We love this car for its ingenuity and commitment to being model and fully electric. There’s no hybrid engine in here, just an absolute brute of a battery-powered one. This thing has over 600bhp and goes from 0-60 in under 3 seconds. Those are staggering stats for an electric car that’s far from supercar territory.
The battery is a whopping 100 kWh with a range extending well over 300 miles. As if all this wasn’t enough, it’s a practical car too. This is one of the main reasons it makes it onto this list – it can boast some of the best electric car stats and figures out there, but it still remains a car you can drive everywhere every day. There are seven seats inside (seven!!) which is ridiculous for a car with 0-60 stats like the one mentioned. To make things even better, it looks amazing and is packed full of all the classic Tesla technology. If you’re interested in a full review that looks at all the tech and other features, you can check one out on topgear.com. One final note on this car is that it does have a large price tag. But, for everything you get, it doesn’t actually seem like bad value for money.
Volvo XC90 T8
The XC90 T8 is a premium car from Swedish manufacturer Volvo. It’s the hybrid version of the highly rated XC90 series, and it has some fantastic features that make it a great hybrid car. Right off the bat, you get a great maximum range on the electric motor – it can go for nearly 30 miles without using any petrol at all. Not only that, but this car has low emissions, and the petrol engine is pretty powerful too
What we like most about this car is the fact it’s highly practical for the whole family. It’s very much a large family car, and it can accommodate up to seven people, with a decent trunk too. All these features come with a sizeable price tag if you buy it new. However, you can see WCVolvo.com for more information on used prices, which will greatly reduce how much this costs. Plus, factor in the savings you make thanks to the hybrid engine, and it definitely makes it worth spending more on this version instead of one of the non-hybrid XC90’s.
Spoiler alert; this is the first of two BMW entries on this list. Second spoiler alert; this is probably our favorite of the two! As far as electric/hybrid supercars go, nothing comes close to the i8 right now. It’s surprising how no other manufacturer seems to have made anything that can rival the i8 regarding top speed, fun factor, looks, and hybrid efficiency. The closest cars come from Tesla, but they’ll be quick to point out none of their offerings are really ‘supercars.’
What makes the i8 great is that it completely beats down the myth that hybrid cars are boring. It looks amazing, has some of the coolest doors I’ve ever seen, and drives just as well as any other supercar. BMW claims it has the fuel consumption of a compact car, but in a sports car. There are bags of technology in this car too, it really looks like it came directly out of the film iRobot (you know, that one with Will Smith). Obviously, you’ll have to pay a fair fortune for this, but if you’re looking for a green sports car, this is the best option for you.
Volkswagen Golf GTE
The Volkswagen Golf has long been an iconic compact car. It’s the car of choice for young people all over the world as they pass their driving test and look for something practical, easy to drive, and a little bit sporty. The GTE continues to tick all of these boxes, but it also adds something else to the party; a hybrid engine. Beneath the floor, there’s a lithium battery capable of giving you 31 miles on its own. This battery can charge in just over 3 hours from any power outlet in your home. If you get a proper wall charging unit you can knock an hour off that time.
It’s a very handy car that packs a punch too; 0-60 will happen in just over 7 seconds, which is mad for any hybrid compact car that’s not a Tesla. The CO2 emissions are remarkably low too, coming in at around 35g/km – again, pretty mad. What we have here is a car that will do just about everything you want it to do, in classic Golf fashion. The interior is slick, the design is modern, it’s the perfect car for all occasions. Factor in those low emissions and it could well be one of the best city drivers of the year.
Here we have the second BMW on our list, and one of the best full-electric cars on the market today. Before we get into things, you have to remind yourself why the i3 was created. It’s specifically made for people that need a small-ish car to drive around a city and not for people that drive across country. With that being said, the full-electric version has a range of up to 124 miles, which will get you to a lot of places when you take short journeys. It’s not a particularly fast car, but that’s not what it’s about. This is a completely green, zero-emission machine, that’s perfect for small families or individuals. If you work in the middle of a busy city that has carbon taxes, this is the perfect mode of transport for you.
It’s a smart car that’s cooler than an actual SMART car, and you have all the BMW benefits to go along with the electric motor. It’s got a load of technology on the inside, including some great safety features. Also, if you’re someone that likes this car but is still put off by the range of the electric-only motor, there is a hybrid option that can help for longer journeys. All in all, an affordable electric beast that’s great for city slicks.
Audi A3 e-Tron
This makes the fourth car on this list from a German manufacturer as Audi join the hybrid party. They’re a company with a lot of clout, and an eye for executive designs and revolutionary technology. The A3 is a car synonymous with the brand, it offers everything you could want from a mid-sized saloon, and oozes high-quality. What the e-tron does is elevate a great car to new heights. They’ve packed it with a hybrid engine that will provide more than enough range when used in a city. The idea is that you switch to the proper engine whenever you’re making long journeys or need to plug-in your car to charge.
In the auto industry, this isn’t a new idea, but it’s new to Audi. As such, you have to give them props for a fantastic first effort. They’ve ticked all the boxes, and this car comes in at a very affordable price. It fits right into the same price range as other executive saloons, but it’s one of the only ones offering this hybrid tech. Speaking of which, the technology inside is built for the future meaning you have a car that will last a long time and prove a good investment. Fancy learning more about this car? Then check out this article on forbes.com for more information about its best features.
There you have it; our pick of the best hybrid and electric cars this year. While all these vehicles are fantastic, it’s exciting to think about what the future holds. Are we going to see even more electric/hybrid cars next year? 2018 will surely be the year more manufacturers attempt the full-electric car, which is currently only on offer from a handful of companies. There were recent reports that Porsche is looking to become one of the first major Tesla rivals, so that will be exciting too.
My only worry is that there’s a lot of hype surrounding autonomous cars right now, so maybe some manufacturers are thinking of setting aside electric/hybrid ideas? Hopefully not, and we will see some great designs and revolutionary ‘green’ cars next year and beyond.
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