3 of the Best-Handling Hybrid Cars
Chances are, you don’t think of the word ‘exciting’ when thinking about hybrid cars. But these days electrification is everywhere whether you, dear car enthusiast, like it or not. To that end, automakers understand the need to keep things interesting, even when including battery power to supplement engines running on micro-explosions thousands of times per minute. Here, we go through three of the best-handling hybrid cars available today to give you a little hope for the future of the sports car.
1. Porsche Panamera e-Hybrid puts Porsche’s best handling to the test in a hybrid sedan
Porsche engineering is second-to-none, and don’t think for a second that the Panamera e-Hybrid doesn’t get the same treatment. In many ways, the hybrid version of Porsche’s least-loved model is probably the best in the bunch. For starters, the hybrid drivetrain provides immense power and acceleration that never fail to deliver a thrill. Even in its most basic form, the Panamera e-Hybrid does the sprint to 60 mph in just 4.2 seconds.
Even better, the sublime handling of the non-hybrid Panamera is accentuated in the electrified version. While the e-Hybrid is heavier, it also gets stiffer springs. That helps control the extra weight, but also provides a sharper handling profile without ruining the ride. Better yet, the low-mounted batteries help lower the car’s center of gravity, so grip feels truly out of this world considering its size and mass.
2. BMW 330e M Sport is a hybrid sedan with a handling upgrade
While you can certainly question BMW’s sport sedan credentials these days, the Bavarian brand is still doing its best to live up to that old-school ethos. Sure, models like the new 5 Series and 7 Series are cushier than canyon-carving. And even the base version of the 330e we’re talking about here is softer than any 3 Series that’s come before it.
But there are options that help elevate the BMW 330e into true sport sedan status. By including both the M Sport package and adaptive M suspension, the 330e goes from a hum-drum daily driver to a truly engaging hybrid sedan.
It comes with more power than the base 3 series, and the M Sport additions add bigger brakes, better wheels, and more aggressive suspension settings that make it a satisfying thing to drive.
3. Volvo S60 Recharge Polestar Engineered puts chassis brilliance beneath a stunning hybrid powertrain
We’ve talked about the Volvo S60 Recharge before, and for good reason. For less than $60,000, it’s a 455-horsepower plug-in hybrid rocket that also travels up to 41 miles on EV power alone. But handling in the base car doesn’t match the handling, which is where Volvo’s tuning arm gets to work.
With the Polestar Engineered S60 Recharge variant, Volvo’s smallest plug-in hybrid gets handling and brakes to match the immense power. Uprated Ohlins suspension provides more direct handling, while bigger brakes and lightweight wheels make starting and stopping just…better.
The 3 best-handling hybrids prove that batteries don’t have to be boring
Without a doubt, the electrification of our road cars is coming. But with models like these three, there can be hope that the best-handling hybrids will always deliver something fun to drive.