Hybrids & Electrics

The Most Fuel-Efficient Hybrid Car That Nobody Wants to Buy

In today’s environmentally conscious world, automakers race to build and design the smartest hybrid vehicles that make sense for lifestyle driving. While certain models like the Toyota Prius or Nissan Leaf come to mind, there is one you might overlook. There’s a hybrid car available today that actually gets better gas mileage than the Prius and just may be the most fuel-efficient car out there.

The only one of its kind

The Hyundai Ioniq is the first model ever to offer three various configurations for powertrains. You can buy a hybrid version, a plug-in hybrid, or a completely electric model, depending on your preferences and driving habits.

New for the 2020 Ioniq are tons of extras, adding a refreshed look to both interior and exterior style. There are also upgrades to the infotainment and driver assistance suite, called Hyundai SmartSense. The Hyundai Ioniq is quite possibly the total hybrid package.

Better fuel economy than the other leading hybrid

The Toyota Prius may have blazed the path for fuel-efficient hybrids, but the Hyundai Ioniq is now paving the road. The EPA is rating both cars with high marks for fuel economy, but the Ioniq actually edges out the Prius in MPG metrics. While the Toyota Prius gets an impressive 56 combined MPG, the Hyundai Ioniq wins with 58 combined MPG. Toyota Prius loyalists may want to take notice. The Hyundai Ioniq measures up to the favorited hybrid model, and at least in terms of fuel economy, it’s taking the lead.

Stacking up to the Toyota Prius

The powertrains vary slightly between the two hybrid cars. The Hyundai Ioniq has a 1.6-liter inline-4, while the Toyota Prius offers a 1.8-liter inline-4. The Ioniq engine is married to a six-speed automatic transmission, and the Prius uses a continuously variable automatic (CVT). Both vehicles have comfortable seating for five and share the same standard roster of airbags.

When comparing warranty coverage, Hyundai makes buying a hybrid or a vehicle of the all-electric variety easier by offering a 10-year powertrain warranty. They continue to provide a lifetime warranty as well for the hybrid and battery packs, which includes replacement and recycling costs.

A natural transition from the Hyundai Elantra

The Hyundai Elantra has always enjoyed being a popular fan-favorite in the South Korean automaker lineup. With a starting MSRP of $19,150, it’s a smart and economical choice. It’s successfully pleased drivers with performance, fuel economy, and safety must-haves over the years.

The Elantra and the Ioniq seem to measure up similarly overall, but only the Ioniq presents next-level hybrid and electric options. The Ioniq may be a natural transition for those Elantra enthusiasts looking to reduce their carbon footprint.

The best hybrid you’re not buying but should be

The Hyundai Ioniq is shown at AutoMobility LA on November 21, 2019
The Hyundai Ioniq | David McNew/Getty Images

The Hyundai Ioniq may not be the first hybrid or electric car that comes to mind, but it’s definitely worth a look. With the powertrain choice of three variations, offering up to 134 hp and best-in-class fuel economy, you won’t be disappointed. Enjoy up to 170 miles on the battery and all the best in driver assistance features, like forward collision and driver-attention warnings. It has everything most want in a car, including affordability with a starting MSRP of $23,200. It may have lackluster consumer awareness now, but as more consumers venture away from gas-powered engines, it won’t be for long. It may very well be the best hybrid option consumers aren’t buying but should be.

If you have been considering a switch to a hybrid, plug-in hybrid, or all-electric car, the 2020 Hyundai Ioniq needs to be at the top of your test-drive list. It’s proving to be a serious upgrade from others in its segment and offers more in powertrain options and overall fuel economy.