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Hybrid lags behind diesel for economy

Toyota Yaris Hybrid has lower mpg than VW Polo TDI

Which? tests show that hybrid power still has to make a case for itself when fitted in superminis. 

In its test of the new Toyota Yaris Hybrid, Which? Car found that the latest petrol-electric hybrid contender averaged 64.2mpg overall. 

While that’s certainly impressive in outright terms, it’s dramatically short of the official figure of 80.7mpg – a full 16.5mpg short, in fact.

Hybrid lags behind

The Yaris Hybrid also has some way to go to beat the best diesel-powered supermini rivals. For instance, the Volkswagen Polo 1.2 TDI Bluemotion costing around the same new as the Yaris Hybrid, averaged 74.3mpg in our tests.

Other diesel-engined superminis with superior Which? tested fuel efficiency include the Audi A1 1.6 TDI (67.3mpg) and Peugeot 207 1.6 HDi (65.7mpg).

The Yaris Hybrid does, however, beat the conventionally-engined Yaris. The standard 1.33-litre petrol-powered Yaris averaged 44.8mpg in Which?’s hands, while the Yaris 1.4 diesel was also less economical at 60.1mpg.

Fuel economy potential 

The Yaris Hybrid also did slightly better than its closest rival, and currently the only other hybrid supermini on sale in the UK: the Honda Jazz Hybrid. This model averaged a combined 60.9mpg in our tests.

However, the most economical car we’ve ever tested is a hybrid. And it’s a stablemate of the Yaris: the Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid, which averaged 83.1mpg in our tests – showing that hybrid power does have the potential to score very well at the fuel pumps.

How we test fuel consumption

Official fuel economy figures rarely match what drivers can expect to achieve in real-world driving. Which? fuel economy tests are more realistic, including a motorway cycle, tests with the engine both hot and cold, and with the air-con system on.

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