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Compact SUV Hybrids

I know there are several out there. While I'm not in the market for a new vehicle yet, when I am, it'll probably be one of those. I currently drive a 2003 Chevy Tracker, and I'd want something similar in size to it. It's a fun vehicle and I get about 22 mpg right now.

I don't like cars, and the biggest SUV I've driven (my parents' 1999 4Runner) is much too large for my taste.

So I was curious as to what people thought of the SUV hybrids out there right now, and if anyone knows what might be coming down the pike. It they're really worth it yet.


  • edited March 2008
    I hope you like the Ford Escape. It is the only hybrid SUV that meets your criteria. OK, the Mariner and Tribute do, too but they are all the same truck. The Highlander is about the same size as the 4Runner and the GM trucks are way too large. That leaves the $40,000+ Lexus. Think Ford, or consider a non-hybrid truck.
  • edited March 2008
    In my opinion, the SUV hybrids' fuel mileage advantage is so small that they are not worth it economically or environmentally. They're typically more performance oriented than economy oriented-- for example the hybrid Highlander gets about the same mileage as the 4-cylinder version, but is high-powered like the V6 model. You'll probably be better off with a little 4-cyl Rav4, CRV, Santa Fe or similar. Also, have you tried out any of the "crossover" vehicles out there like the Vibe/Matrix?

  • edited March 2008
    That's what I was wondering about. It doesn't sound worth it(mostly from a cost ratio), at least not until the gas mileage on them goes higher(gas prices are starting to hurt, but not enough to justify that kind of purchase just yet).

    The crossovers do interest me a little, and I might check them out. I've also driven some kind of Pontiac crossover/small suv that had horrible visibility when checking your rear to the left. It was a rental car, and I was anything but impressed.
  • edited March 2008
    *nods* Okay, thanks!
  • edited March 2008
    I rented one of those recently also. Bad visibility is correct.
  • edited March 2008
    I absolute love small SUVs. From the Wrangler, to the Sidekick, to the RAV 4 I have now. I must admit, that they have their on road draw backs. I want my short wheelbase RAV 4 instead in a European diesel....they tested out great on line; lets beg Toyota for one. I would try a Jeep Diesel if I could trust them.
  • edited March 2008

    Toyota Hylander. But unless you do a lot of city driving you'd be better off getting the non-hybrid version.
  • edited March 2008
    Isn't the Highlander about the same size as the 4Runner?
  • edited March 2008
    I'd suggest a stop at the local bookstore. There are numerous publications out there that compare and contrast new vehicles. My favorite is the Consumer Reports New Car Preview.

    There are also numerous publications that review the new offerings and concept cars that the manufacturers are "showing".
  • edited March 2008

    Not even close....Much SMALLER....The FJ is about the same size as the 4runner. Highlander is on the Camry platform.
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