Best used hybrid cars 2022
Our list of the very best used hybrid cars will help you to find an affordable and efficient car that's right for you
With a crackdown on high-emissions vehicles and tax incentives for less polluting ones, hybrid cars have risen in popularity recently. More and more hybrid choices on the market is good news for those looking for a used hybrid car as the pool of secondhand examples is growing bigger every day.
In this list, we’ve put together a selection of the best traditional hybrid models – those which use a combustion engine (in most cases petrol-fuelled) to charge a small battery, which in turn powers a small electric motor. They’re not to be confused with plug-in hybrids, whose batteries you charge by plugging into a wallbox or public charging point. We've put together a list of the best used plug-in hybrids if you’re in the market for one of those. If you want to go for a fully electric option we also have a list of the best used electric cars.
One of the benefits of traditional hybrids is that you don’t need to charge them to make the most of them, which is one less thing to worry about. Some manufacturers, such as Toyota, Lexus and Kia, market these as ‘self-charging’ hybrids. You’re only really able to travel one or two miles on the electric motor alone until the engine needs to take over and recharge the battery – so don’t expect to be completing your entire commute without using a drop of petrol. A traditional hybrid is best suited for buyers looking to lower their overall fuel consumption, as they increase fuel efficiency, especially in urban driving.
Toyota has a long track record with hybrids, having pioneered the technology in its Prius and a host of other models, so you’ll find many hybrid Toyotas offer good value for money on the used market. Over the years, however, many other manufacturers have released their own hybrids, so there are now plenty of other secondhand hybrid cars to choose from, regardless of budget. Bodystyles are also more varied than they used to be; from superminis to SUVs and everything in between, there are as many options available now as traditional petrol or diesel cars. Read on for our list of the best used hybrid cars to buy in 2022...
Ford Kuga Hybrid
The latest iteration of the Ford Kuga SUV is a practical choice that has been offered as a hybrid since 2020, so now they’ve started to appear on the used market. Entry-level ST-Line Edition trim offers lots of standard equipment, including a B&O sound system and an eight-inch infotainment screen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Opting for a used example with less than 6,000 miles on the clock could get you a higher spec for a few thousand pounds less than the equivalent model brand-new, with ST-Line X Kugas starting from under £35,000 at the time of writing. For that you get 19-inch alloys, a panoramic sunroof, heated seats and a heated steering wheel. Find a top-of-the-line Vignale and you’ll get more driver-assistance technology, as well as a leather interior and head-up display, among other upgrades. Many hybrids can feel uninspiring to drive, but Ford has done a good job with the Kuga – it’s still one of the best SUVs to drive, despite its sluggish CVT automatic transmission. Read our full Ford Kuga Hybrid review here.
The CR-V is one of the newer models here, but it's still a good used buy, at about £28,000 for a 2019 model with 35,000 miles on the clock. The CR-V has been a good used buy for a long time because of its practicality and reliability, and in recent years a hybrid was added to the range, adding plenty of appeal for buyers wanting good efficiency too.
The CR-V is decent to drive, if not quite as good as a Toyota C-HR, and the hybrid system works well especially in traffic. It uses a 2.0-litre petrol engine with the electric motor, and it's the latter that drives the wheels most of the time. This means it's quiet, efficient and smooth. Read our full review here.
The Honda Jazz has been a solid supermini contender since around 2001, but the most recent generation has been available exclusively as a hybrid since 2020. Honda’s e:HEV powertrain is fairly sophisticated for a car in this class and the Jazz is a practical choice for a car of this size. Used examples now start from around £17,000 which is a saving of a couple thousand pounds against a brand-new one.
The latest Jazz is also available as an SUV-styled variant called the Crosstar, with slightly more durable water-resistant upholstery and tougher exterior styling cues. Used examples of the Crosstar start from around £21,000, offering a more significant saving off the list price, which starts from just under £25,000. If you’re on a more modest budget, it’s worth noting that some previous generations of the Jazz were also offered with hybrid power. Read our full Honda Jazz review here.
Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid
Toyota's Prius had things its own way in the hybrid family hatchback class for many years, until the similarly shaped and sized Ioniq arrived in 2017 to shake up the market. Somewhat dowdy interior and exterior looks mean the Ioniq isn't really a head-turner, nor will it stir your soul while driving, but it's a solid, sensible, efficient and great-value choice for everyday motoring.
In 2019 there was a facelift, which you'll have to be an expert to spot on the outside but it's easy to tell once you get inside because the touchscreen infotainment system got a lot bigger and this improved the cabin quite a bit, so it's worth seeking out a later model. Models with high mileage are likely to have been used as taxis, so we'd stick to low-mileage cars if you're buying privately. A 2020 example with under 10,000 miles can be had for £17,000 at the moment. Read our full Hyundai Ioniq hybrid review here.
The Kia Niro was one of the first SUVs to use hybrid power, and while it's not as good to drive as the Toyota C-HR, it's comfortable, efficient and roomy enough to work well as a family car. Expect to pay about £14,000 for a 2017 model in a lower trim level with just under 85,000 miles. Even these cars will still have some of the long seven-year/100,000-mile warranty, which makes them an excellent used buy. Even discounting the warranty, reliability should be a strong point, alongside the good list of standard kit even on lesser versions. Read our full Kia Niro review here.
Lexus ES 300h
If you’re looking for a sophisticated executive saloon with hybrid power, then a used Lexus ES 300h is a great choice. The car has only been available in the UK since 2019 in its most recent iteration, but Toyota and Lexus’ hybrid technology has set the benchmark for decades now, and the drivetrain used in the ES is one of the best yet.
This car feels luxurious and refined, and is fairly efficient considering the power it produces. It is, however, best suited to relaxed, smooth driving, rather than enthusiastic back-road blasts. Around £30,000 can get you an older used example with around 30,000 miles on the clock, but with Lexus’ consistently high reliability rating in the Driver Power customer survey, you can expect it to be dependable, too. Read our full Lexus ES 300h review here.
Lexus NX 300h
The Lexus NX is an upmarket family SUV that uses Toyota-sourced hybrid technology to great effect. Used Lexus models have a reputation for reliability, so despite their affordable prices, you can feel safe in buying one of these relaxing, high-quality cars. You'll pay roughly £20,000 for a 2015 model with 80,000 miles on the clock.
The NX 300h uses a 2.5-litre petrol engine with an economy-focused tune, plus an electric motor to boost efficiency. It's great for city traffic, and while the NX isn't all that much fun to drive, it's comfortable and the interior is well-made so should have stood up well even after 80,000 miles. Read our full review here.
The RX was a hybrid pioneer, offering petrol-electric drive in a luxury family SUV as early as the second-generation model in 2005. Today, these early cars can be picked up for well below the £9,000 mark. Excellent reliability means even age and high mileage shouldn't put you off, as long as the car has a good service history.
A bigger budget brings the more modern and efficient third-generation car (2008-2015, pictured above) into play: £10,000 will get you a high-mileage one. There's also the newest version, which still has plenty of appeal despite higher prices of about £26,000 for a 2016 model. These cars use 3.5-litre V6 petrol engines with their electric motors, so they're quick enough and also smooth and relaxing to drive. We have a full used buying guide for the RX here.
Lexus UX 250h
The UX 250h is one of Lexus' newer models and it uses technology shared with the Toyota Corolla and C-HR. This means it's one of the best-driving cars in the Lexus stable, with comfortable suspension, good control weights and an efficient and quiet powertrain – it's a 2.0-litre petrol with the electric motor here.
You’ll pay around £22,000 for a UX from 2019 that has about 20,000 miles on the clock, which looks good considering it has a fantastic interior and the aforementioned excellent chassis. It's roomy enough for a family, should be reliable and is really well built. Read our full review here.
Renault Captur E-TECH Hybrid
The latest Renault Captur has been available with a wide range of powertrains for a while now, one of which is the E-TECH full hybrid. The hybrid Captur is based on the Renault Clio hatchback, with which it shares this powertrain. The Captur sits higher up than the Clio and has tougher looks plus a little more interior space – although some of this space is lost to make room for the batteries in the hybrid version.
The Captur E-TECH uses more than just electric power to make it as fuel-efficient as possible, such as the ability to coast with its engine off at cruising speed. It’s also a comfortable car to ride in, with a good-quality interior. There aren’t too many used options on the market yet, as the car only came out in 2021, but manufacturer-approved used examples start from just under £24,000 with extremely low mileage – a couple of thousand less than a brand-new equivalent. Read our full Renault Captur E-TECH Hybrid review here.
Toyota C-HR Hybrid
It’s impossible to compile a list of non-plug-in hybrids without including a large number of Toyotas. The Japanese manufacturer was a pioneer of what it calls ‘self-charging’ hybrids and has used the technology across its range. The C-HR is a stylish small family SUV that benefits from this technology. Cars from 2017 with about 50,000 miles are currently selling for around £16,500.
That's for the 1.8-litre version, which is great for efficiency. The C-HR is one of the best-driving SUVs of its type, and a 2.0-litre version is also available, which boosts performance but sacrifices some efficiency in the process. Still, if you want a small SUV that looks good and is great to drive, the C-HR makes a lot of sense as a used buy. Read our full review here.
Toyota Corolla Hybrid
The Corolla proves that hybrids don't have to be boring. The Corolla name may conjure a mental image of a stuffy, boring commuter car from years gone by, but this modern model is a fantastic car. It's great to drive, has stylish looks and delivers strong economy from its petrol-electric powertrain.
It's been on sale for long enough that there are plenty available secondhand, and most still have some of their five-year manufacturer warranty left. Reliability should be a strong point regardless, and the Corolla is also comfortable and spacious, with a good level of standard equipment. You can grab a 2019 version for around £19,000 with 25,000 miles on the clock. Read our full Toyota Corolla review here.
The Prius is, for many, the original hybrid and still the first one that comes to mind when you mention the word. On the used market, a third-generation model (2009-2015) is perhaps the most interesting prospect, due to the huge number of cars available at a wide range of price points.
Prices range from below £7,000 for early cars, which use the very reliable 1.8-litre petrol-electric drivetrain and have decent standard kit and a spacious interior and boot. Yet the newer model that's still in production is a better car overall. We found a 2016 car for just under £15,000 with 25,000 miles on the clock. The current Prius is incredibly comfortable, good to drive and highly efficient. Read our full Prius used buyer's guide here.
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