10 Hybrid Cars That Are Surprisingly Powerful - SUV VEHICLE

10 Hybrid Cars That Are Surprisingly Powerful

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Hybrid cars are becoming more and more prevalent, with the focus shifting from mere fuel efficiency to performance and agility as well. Hybrids such as the Volvo S60 Recharge feature a ridiculous combined horsepower of 455 horsepower, while others such as the Chrysler Pacifica might surprise you with how nimble they are, while being a family minivan.




If you think such hybrid cars would have poor fuel efficiency due to the amount of power and torque they put out, well – you’d be wrong. Some of these cars listed are able to achieve over 100 combined MPGe and still provide great performance at the same time. Others, such as the S60 Recharge, will be closer to 70 MPGe, which is still much better than non-hybrid cars offering nearly 500 horses.

UPDATE: 2024/02/19 13:00 EST BY VEDANT OJHA

This article has been refreshed to update the list of sleeper hybrids that pack more power than expected. In place of a few older entries from the likes of Lexus,
BMW,
Volvo, and Toyota, we have included four new hybrids that deserve a spotlight. They are the Chrysler Pacifica, Toyota RAV4 Prime, Mitsubishi Outlander, and a deserved European exception, the Cupra Formentor. We have updated the specs of the existing cars on the list to reflect an accurate picture of the current automotive landscape.

In order to give you the most up-to-date information possible, the data used to complete this article was sourced directly from various manufacturer websites, as well as authoritative sites, including EPA, and Edmunds. The models are listed in terms of their power, highest to lowest.


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1 Volvo S60 Recharge

455 Horsepower

The Volvo S60 Recharge is a front-engine, rear-motor four-door PHEV. It features a turbocharged and supercharged four-cylinder engine with “E-Boost”, having a combined horsepower of 455 and 523 combined pound-feet of torque. With a mileage of around 31 MPG combined, this car is one of the more fuel-efficient options out there.

2024 Volvo S60 Recharge Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

4.3 seconds

Top Speed

114 MPH

Weight

4,425 lbs

Horsepower

455 HP

Torque

523 lb-ft


(Source: Volvo)

All-wheel drive is standard on the S60 Recharge, which means you can expect incredible acceleration given the whopping 523 pound-feet of torque. The turbocharged and supercharged engine, when paired with the hybrid E-boost system, had this car positioned in the top spot for the title of fastest Volvo ever until the Volvo EX30 came out and snatched it right out.

2 Toyota Crown

340 Horsepower

The Toyota Crown is a sedan that was made available in 2023 to replace the Toyota Avalon. It features a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine paired with Toyota’s Hybrid Max system that provides 29 MPG in city driving and 32 MPG on the highway. All-wheel drive is standard on the Toyota Crown, and the suspension is raised, making the car sit higher than a Toyota Avalon.


2024 Toyota Crown Platinum Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

5.1 seconds

Top Speed

129 MPH

Weight

4,338 lbs

Horsepower

340 HP

Torque

400 lb-ft

(Source: Toyota)

All Crown models have a hybrid powertrain, but only the top-spec Platinum model gets Toyota’s new Hybrid Max setup, which pairs a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder with an electric motor on the rear axle for a combined 340 horsepower. With this trim, you also get 21-inch wheels, adaptive dampers, and an upgraded park assist system. However, everything amazing comes at a cost, and for the Crown you can expect to pay $41,445 for the base model.

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3 Mazda CX-90

323 Horsepower

The Mazda CX-90 is basically a front engine, front motor, all-wheel-drive SUV. It has a 2.5-liter four-cylinder paired with one AC motor to put out a combined horsepower of over 300. As for fuel efficiency, you’ll see 24 MPG in city driving and 27 MPG on the highway. The combined fuel mileage is 56 MPGe while the fully-electric range is around 25 miles.

2024 Mazda CX-90 Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

5.9 seconds

Top Speed

Limited to 118 MPH

Weight

5,236 lbs

Horsepower

323 HP

Torque

369 lb-ft


(Source: Mazda)

For a seven-passenger vehicle, this hybrid car has great performance that is comparable to that of its turbocharged inline-six sibling. Unlike some of the other hybrid cars on this list, the CX-90 gains most of its power from the 173 horsepower AC motor, with the gasoline-powered four-cylinder only putting out 189 horsepower.

4 Toyota RAV4 Prime

302 Horsepower

30 years ago, in 1994, the automotive industry witnessed the first-ever vehicle with the look and feel of an SUV on an unibody platform, and that was the Rav4. With such a long and ongoing run, the 2024 iteration of this enduring car, now a hybrid, delivers around 302 net combined horsepower.


With an AWD setup, the RAV4 Prime is powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine bolted to a continuously variable transmission and assisted by two electric motors.

2024 Toyota RAV4 Prime Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

5.6 seconds

Top Speed

124 MPH

Weight

5,530 lbs

Horsepower

302 HP

Torque

165 lb-ft

(Source: Toyota)

What makes the RAV4 Prime quick is the electric motor’s immediate torque delivery, which provides that extra shove, particularly when taking off from a stop. You can expect a mileage of around 38 MPG combined and 94MPGe, and can outrun a four-cylinder Supra sports car to 60 MPH.


Rav4 Prime can travel around 42 miles on all-electric power, and with features like heated exterior mirrors, a power liftgate, and passive keyless entry, you have in your hands a hybrid that delivers considerable power.

3:12

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5 Chrysler Pacifica

260 Horsepower

Family cars are hard to spot on a list of quick cars, but Chrysler has struck the sweet spot between comfort and agility with the Pacifica. This criminally underrated minivan has been a successful part of Chrysler’s lineup, and it is the only van that offers both gas and plug-in power, keeping Chrysler on the map.

The Pacifica Hybrid’s engine churns about 260 ponies, from its 3.6-liter V-6 and two electric motors, which are backed by a 16.0-kWh lithium-ion battery pack.


2024 Chrysler Pacifica Pinnacle Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

7.7 seconds

Top Speed

120 MPH

Weight

6,055 lbs

Horsepower

260 HP

Torque

262 lb-ft

(Source: Chrysler)

While the gas-only trims of the Pacifica are slightly quicker with an optional AWD setup, the Hybrid comes only in front-wheel drive setup. The 2024 Pacifica Hybrid can travel up to 33 miles on electric power and, according to the EPA, is rated at 82 MPGe combined.

The Pinnacle comes with almost everything you could need in a family van. With plenty of space to seat a family of 7, there is no dearth of cargo space either. And despite the weight, size, and a rather humble engine, the Pacifica is a sleeper that claims a spot on this list.


6 Mitsubishi Outlander

248 Horsepower

Designed with Japanese hospitality in mind, the 2024 Mitsubishi Outlander secured a spot on this list thanks to its underappreciated power and pace. Sharing its platform with the Nissan Rogue, the most powerful Outlander you can get today is the Hybrid.

The 2024 Outlander Hybrid’s 2.4-liter inline-four engine and two electric motors combine to produce 248 hp and 332 lb-ft of torque. This is around 67 ponies more than the gas model.

2024 Mitsubishi Outlander Hybrid Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

6.5 seconds

Top Speed

110 MPH

Weight

3,681 lbs

Horsepower

248 HP

Torque

332 lb-ft


(Source: Mitsubishi)

With a 20.0-kWh battery pack, the Outlander offers a range of 38 miles of electric-only driving range per charge. If you compare that with its competitors like the Ford Escape and Hyundai Tucson, the Outlander offers a better range, but is still around four miles short of the RAV4 Prime.

While the Outlander’s starting price of around $40,345 puts it in steep space, you have driver-assistance tech that includes adaptive cruise control and a semi-autonomous drive mode, which make it far from a bad deal.

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7 Cupra Formentor eHybrid

241 Horsepower

A side view of the 2024 Cupra Formentor eHybrid
Cupra UK

A European model, we simply had to include the Cupra Formentor as an exception because it deserves a spot in this list. In terms of styling, the Cupra is a cut-price alternative to the likes of Macan or the Audi Q3.


The 2024 Cupra Formentor eHybrid features a 13kWh lithium-ion battery with a usable capacity of 12.8kWh. You can expect a pure electric range of up to 36 miles from the base model, and a 1.4-liter turbocharged engine that produces 201 horsepower, combined with the electric motor.

Performance

0-60 MPH

7 seconds

Top Speed

130 MPH

Weight

3,756 lbs

Horsepower

241 HP

Torque

184 lb-ft

(Source: Cupra UK)

Cupra also gives you the option of the higher powered ‘Hybrid VZ5’ trim which offers up to 34 miles of pure electric range, and with the same petrol engine, delivers around 241 horsepower. If you’ve already used the battery power, the Cupra will also charge the battery using its petrol engine, which is useful but does come with a fuel economy penalty, as is obvious.


8 MINI Countryman Plug-in Hybrid

221 Horsepower

The MINI Countryman’s hybrid trim is named the SE ALL4, featuring a 1.5-liter turbo three-cylinder TwinPower engine. This is paired with an electric motor to produce a combined 221 horsepower and 284 pound-feet of torque. It has a six-speed automatic transmission with all-wheel drive which gives the same nimble handling characteristics as the non-hybrid MINIs.

The BMW-owned brand’s electric ambitions are clear with the recent announcement of the 2025 All-Electric MINI Countryman, that will join the lineup alongside its hybrid sibling.


2024 MINI SE Countryman ALL4 Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

7.8 seconds

Top Speed

140 MPH

Weight

3,986 lbs

Horsepower

221 horsepower

Torque

284 lb-ft

(Source: MINI USA)

With a charge time of 2.5 hours, multiple trim options, and a great-looking interior – this hybrid has features that are bound to please, no matter your preferences. The fuel efficiency is quite impressive with the Countryman ALL4’s EPA-estimated 29 MPG combined, and 73 MPGe combined when the hybrid system is engaged.

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9 Toyota Prius Prime

220 Horsepower


The Toyota Prius has garnered a huge amount of love and hate over the years, but rest assured – the Prius Prime is a different animal. This car barely shares any similarities with the older versions of the Prius in terms of aesthetics. A new streamlined, sporty-looking exterior has replaced the rather unattractive older shell.

Performance

0-60 MPH

6.5 seconds

Top Speed

112 MPH

Weight

3,536 lbs

Horsepower

220 HP

Torque

139 lb-ft

(Source: Toyota)

On top of the exterior changes, the Prius Prime was given a completely upgraded powertrain, when compared to the previous Prius’. The Prius Prime features a 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle inline-four engine, while also having two AC motors, one with 161 horsepower and the other with 94. This makes the new Prius Prime not only fast-looking – but also fast-going.


10 Toyota Camry Hybrid

208 Horsepower

The Toyota Camry Hybrid is a sleek, well-designed car that provides amazing fuel efficiency while also having enough power to get up and go when you need to. Using Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive, a system that has been improving for 16 years, the Camry Hybrid is able to achieve a 46 MPG combined fuel economy rating.

Toyota Camry Hybrid Performance Specs

0-60 MPH

7.4 seconds

Top Speed

135 MPH

Weight

3,480 lbs

Horsepower

208 HP

Torque

149 lb-ft


(Source: Toyota)

Apart from the good performance and high MPG numbers, this car sports a luxury-like interior that is reminiscent of a Lexus. Sport-tuned suspension as well as multiple different drive modes such as EV, ECO, and SPORT allow for a fun experience while saving gas at the same time.

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