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How Do I Choose the Best Hybrid SUV?

Article Details
  • Written By: M. Walker
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 07 August 2017
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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Choosing the best hybrid sport utility vehicle (SUV) will depend on a variety of factors, such as the cost, fuel efficiency, size, and safety of the model. How you intend to use the SUV and whether it is for general everyday use, off road experiences, or towing will also affect your purchase. Evaluating how frequently you’ll be driving it and for how long you intend to keep it will help you estimate the amount you will save in fuel costs.

The price of a hybrid SUV can range from under $20,000 US Dollars (USD) for used vehicles to upwards of $90,000 USD for new luxury vehicles. Considering both your budget and whether or not you intend to make up for the price of your hybrid SUV through savings on gasoline can help you determine whether you wish to buy new or used. It can also be helpful to evaluate the different interest rates of various car loans if you intend to borrow.

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Fuel efficiency is another important factor in finding the right hybrid SUV for your budget. The three general types of hybrid SUVs are those that operate on battery and use the gas engine only as backup, those that run parallel gas and electric systems, and those that use the electric battery to supplement the main gas engine. Those that use the gas engine as a backup are the most fuel efficient, while those that use the battery as a supplement are least likely to enable you to save enough on gasoline to cover the cost of the vehicle. Both the type of engine design and the reported miles per gallon (MPG) of each hybrid SUV you look at should be considered.

The size of the SUV will also be important in your decision, as you will need to evaluate both its available space and how its size affects its fuel efficiency. Larger SUVs with seven seats will generally have lower MPG ratings for both city and highway driving, but they might offer much-needed storage or passenger space. If you have a large family and intend to go on long camping trips, for example, a larger SUV will make more sense, while if you’re looking to maximize fuel efficiency, a smaller SUV will be better.

Safety features of the SUV should be strongly considered. Evaluating the different crash test ratings, test driving the vehicle to get a sense of how easy it is to drive, and making sure that it can safely and effectively meet your needs are all important. It is also important to find out about the warranties and reliability of each SUV as well, especially if you intend to drive it for a longer period of time.

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