The 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Destroys the 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid’s Fuel Economy

Hybrid SUVs are all the rage right now, and they’re only going to become more popular. Car manufacturers are dedicating platforms to hybrid and electric vehicles, and committing to making larger portions of their fleets electric in the coming years. If you’re ready to buy a hybrid SUV (or you already have one and are in the market for a new SUV), you might be torn between the 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid and the 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid. Which is the better hybrid SUV, and which one is right for you?

A silver 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Bronze Edition against a gray background.
2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Bronze Edition | Toyota

Fuel Economy in the 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is way better

The 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid has a more powerful engine. It’s a 3.3-liter V6 with 318-hp and 322 lb-ft of torque. The 2022 Explorer Hybrid’s powerful engine means that its fuel economy can’t live up to that of the 2022 Highlander Hybrid. It gets only 27 city miles and 28 highway miles with the RWD option. The AWD option gets just 20 city miles and 27 highway miles.

On the other hand, the 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid has a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine with two motors. It makes 243-hp. It gets 36 city miles and 35 miles with FWD and 35 for each if you opt for AWD. The 2022 Highlander Hybrid can even go up to 600 miles on a single tank of gas.

Cargo space varies in the two SUVs

The cabin in the 2022 Highlander Hybrid is nice and spacious, except for the third row. Passenger room in the rear of the SUV is a little cramped. However, the Highlander Hybrid’s infotainment system may make you forget the third row’s tight quarters, assuming you won’t have to regularly use it for people.

According to Motor Trend the 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid has more cargo space as well as second-row legroom, at 48.4 cubic feet to the 2022 Explorer’s 47.9. However, the 2022 Highlander Hybrid has less front row space, at 84.3 cubic feet to the 2022 Explorer Hybrid’s 87.8 cubic feet. It also has less third row space, at 16 cubic feet to the Explorer Hybrid’s 18.2 cubic feet.

The 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid is cheaper

The 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid starts at $45,430 for the base model. The 4WD 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid starts at $47,430. And the 2022 Ford Explorer Platinum, which is the high-end version of the 2022 Explorer Hybrid, starts at $54,115.

The base 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid starts at $38,855 for the LE, and $41,885 for the Hybrid XLE. The 2022 Toyota Highlander Bronze Edition starts at $43,880, and the Highlander Hybrid Limited is a little more, at $45,810. And finally, the 2022 Highlander Hybrid Platinum starts at $49,010.

Both the 2022 Toyota Highlander Hybrid and the 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid are great choices for your next SUV. However, if you want to be able to go the extra mile (or eight), then you’ll want to choose the 2022 Toyota Hybrid SUV. It will cost you less than the 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid too, which is a nice bonus.

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