10 Best Plug-in Hybrids

2017 Mercedes-Benz C350e
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Here Are the Top-Scoring Plug-In Hybrids on Our Site

Several automakers are continuing to add electric vehicles to their lineups, and many are in the form of plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs). Adding an electric motor to work alongside the traditional gas powertrain makes for additional horsepower, instant torque, and increased efficiency. Additionally, PHEV drivers won’t suffer from range anxiety, or the worry that they'll run out of battery power and be stranded.

Plug-in hybrids tend to have larger battery packs than traditional (no plug) hybrids. This means they can travel farther and faster on electric power alone, and they qualify for a federal electric vehicle tax credit. The federal rebate can be as much as $7,500, depending on the size of the battery. Some PHEVs, including the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and the Chevrolet Volt, have hit the threshold for the maximum government kickback. The federal rebate may not last much longer, so now is the time to take advantage of the savings.

Aside from the Volt and the Pacifica Hybrid, all other high-scoring PHEVs in our rankings are vehicles found in the luxury segment. Each will qualify for a federal rebate of at least $2,500. For example, the BMW 330e starts at $44,100 and will net an estimated rebate of about $4,000, while the Mercedes S550e, with its price tag of $96,600, will only qualify for $3,000.

In ranking these plug-in hybrids, we’ve taken into consideration their U.S. News overall score, electric range, fuel economy numbers, and price. Their overall score is based on several factors important to buyers, such the vehicle’s performance score, safety score, and reliability score. A vehicle’s electric range indicates how many miles said vehicle can travel on electricity alone. The vehicle’s fuel economy numbers then become relevant after the car has run out of electric charge. Then, just like any other vehicle, the car is given a designated miles per gallon number by the EPA.