Hybrids are having a moment. Here’s what you need to know if you’re in the market.

    More car shoppers are heading to dealer lots in search of hybrids.

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    Hybrids are more popular than ever.Regular hybrids are a better deal than plug-ins right now.Even if you pay an initial upcharge, a hybrid can save you money in the long run.

    Hybrids are having a moment as demand for electric vehicles cools.

    These vehicles — which come in plug-in varieties or with hybrid engines that don’t need to be charged at all — offer an attractive compromise for a new, more practical green car shopper that is dominating the market.

    These shoppers are turning to bridge technologies like hybrids and plug-in hybrids, reviving a segment once thought by some to be a relic of the pre-Tesla automotive industry.

    The high demand for hybrids dispels a misconception about electric vehicles: that interested buyers don’t exist.

    Recent studies have proven that shoppers are very interested in switching to a more environmentally friendly vehicle — they’re just more likely to consider a partially battery-powered car over a pure electric vehicle.

    The industry is adjusting accordingly. GM is reversing its plans to skip hybrid models in North America, while rival Ford is leaning more heavily on its existing hybrid lineup.

    Tesla’s Elon Musk is even blaming the current hybrid craze for his company’s softer sales in the first quarter, calling out an industry-wide prioritization of hybrids for cutting into EV sales.

    But if you’re heading to the lot in search of a partially battery-powered car, you should know that not all hybrids are created equal.

    A regular hybrid is a better deal than a plug-in right now

    Regular hybrids tend to be cheaper than their plug-in counterparts.

    The average price paid for a regular hybrid is around $41,000, compared to around $56,000 for plug-ins. For comparison, the average fully electric vehicle sold for $56,648 in May, according to Cox Automotive.

    Shoppers who are turning to hybrids after ruling out a fully electric car often live in areas with limited access to charging, creating the same issue of finding places to fuel a plug-in hybrid.

    The sticker price for a hybrid is much easier for the average consumer to swallow, but even if you’re paying an upcharge from a gas-powered car, you can end up making that money back.

    A study from Consumer Reports in late 2023 found that these cars, on average, end up saving drivers $5 in fuel savings for every $1 spent in increased purchase price.

    In addition to fuel savings, hybrids also offer maintenance benefits similar to that of an electric car, which requires less frequent maintenance than an internal combustion engine, Consumer Reports found.

    On average, hybrids studied by Consumer Reports cost $2,785 to maintain over a 10-year period, compared to $2,320 for a battery-electric car.

    These numbers are adding up for car shoppers, too. Hybrid sales have been on the rise since the start of the year, bolstering brands like Toyota and Ford, which have heavily incorporated these cars into their current lineup.

    Read the original article on Business Insider


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