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Used Car of the Year Awards 2021: Hybrid cars

With demand for used cars on the rise, you’ll want to know which are the best buys. That’s where our annual Used Car Awards come in. These are our favourite hybrid cars...

Used Hybrid Car of the Year
(and best buy less than £15,000)

Hyundai Ioniq (2017-present)

Used Car Awards 2021 logo

We’d all like to be doing our bit for the environment, but investing in green technology always costs money. Fortunately, as you can see, there are some fantastic used hybrid cars that’ll save you a fortune by buying used.

Our winner – the 2018 Hyundai Ioniq – beats its Toyota Prius rival, not least because you can find a much newer Ioniq for the same money. It’s very nearly as fuel-efficient, too, and better to drive, because it has a conventional six-speed automatic gearbox in place of the Prius’s rev-happy CVT. In addition, you’ll still have three years’ warranty left on a two-year-old Ioniq.

Used Hyundai Ioniq 2017-2022 interior

That it should beat the BMW 5 Series 530e and Volvo XC90 T8 is remarkable. Each of these plug-in hybrids makes a worthy case for itself, and both can travel much farther on electricity – saving precious petrol – than a conventional hybrid like the Ioniq can. If you don’t keep their batteries charged, though, they’ll return worse fuel economy than a regular diesel, and that’s no good for your bank balance. Because of all that, and how much cheaper it is than either, the Ioniq takes the win. 

BMW 5 Series Saloon 2019 front right tracking RHD

Best buy less than £25,000

At this price, the 2017 530e beats its smaller BMW 3 Series 330e brother, with a bigger boot and a more spacious interior, yet a similar all-electric range of 20-30 miles. It trounces the Mercedes C-Class C350e for refinement, interior quality and infotainment ease of use, too. At almost half its new car cost, it’s a very efficient use of cash. 

Used BMW 5 Series review >>

Find a used BMW 5 Series for sale >>

Volvo XC90 T8 (2015-present)

Volvo XC90 T8

Best buy less than £25,000

If you can make regular use of a charging point, a plug-in hybrid SUV like the XC90 T8 can prove remarkably economical. A 2017 example is almost half the price of a new one, too. With seven seats, it beats its BMW X5 xDrive40e rival for practicality, and is far nicer to drive than the Lexus RX 450h.

Used Volvo XC90 review >>

Find a used Volvo XC90 for sale >>

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Read about more Used Car of the Year 2021 winners >>