The 10 Most Fuel Efficient SUVs
Today, more and more consumers are asking, “Which 2022 SUVs on the market are the most fuel-efficient?” The choices in that particular field are many and varied, so we’ve put together a list of ten of the most fuel-efficient SUVs in 2022 for your consideration:
1. 2022 Kia Sportage Hybrid
In early 2022, Kia introduced its new Sportage Hybrid, a fuel-efficient hybrid compact crossover SUV. And, Kia’s new 2022 Sportage (hybrid or not) looks like it could be another major success story for the brand.
A completely new generation of Sportage is being introduced with this variant, with numerous new features, both inside and out including:
- All new Sportage Hybrids offer spacious interiors and quality materials.
- The top SX-Prestige trim offers dual 12.3-inch infotainment and driver information displays, integrated into a single unit similar to the one offered by Mercedes-Benz, giving the entire dashboard a luxury look.
- Legroom at the rear measures 41.3 inches, which is among the best in this class.
- The expansive luggage area measures 39.5 cubic feet and the max cargo space (with the rear seats folded down) is approximately 74 cubic feet.
- Plenty of cargo room, efficiency, quality, quietness, style, and a large back seat come standard.
- Impressive driver assistance with Kia DriveWise tech features, including helpful adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assist features are some of the best on today’s market.
- Besides its 7.1-inch longer overall length, this new model has a longer wheelbase by 3.4 inches over last year’s model.
- A variety of trim levels are available, including LX, EX, and SX-Prestige.
- In the LX, all-wheel drive is optional, but in the two higher trims, it’s standard.
SUV fuel economy can sometimes come at the expense of performance in many hybrid models from other manufacturers. However, that’s not the case with the new Kia Sportage Hybrid. An impressive 227 horsepower is available from the turbocharged Sportage Hybrid and the Sportage non-hybrid has 187 hp. And, the hybrid achieves 43 combined mpg. The Sportage Hybrid’s EPA combined fuel economy drops a bit to a still impressive 38 mpg as a result of adding all-wheel drive.
This hybrid SUV starts its pricing at $27,290 with FWD and the AWD Sportage Hybrid LX models start at $29,090. The starting price of the T Sportage Hybrid in SX-Premium trim is $36,190.
Like any new vehicle, this one has its pros and cons, and here are a few of them:
- Has a spacious interior
- Offers some decent standard equipment
- Provides excellent fuel economy
- Is part of the new Sportage generation
- Accelerates reasonably quickly
- The brakes deliver a nice progressive feel
- Comes with a ten-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty
- Lacking a scheduled maintenance plan that’s complimentary-with-purchase
- It hasn’t had time to prove itself yet
2. 2022 Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid
For starters, according to MotorTrend and reviewer Duncan Brady, who says of this SUV, “It’s a good pick if you can overlook the lack of available AWD and subpar interior materials. The low starting price adds to the Hybrid’s appeal, as does the respectable EV range”.
The midlevel SEL is the most recommended model with a number of desirable extras when you compare it to the SE base trim, according to Edmunds. Some of the new offerings for 2022 include:
- Heated front seats
- Nicer upholstery choices
- Offers a hands-free liftgate
- A new premium audio system is available
- Three new available paint options include Iced Blue Metallic, Atlas Blue Metallic, and Flight Blue Metallic.
- Available in SEL, SE, and Titanium trim levels
- A new towing package is available.
- The 2022 Ford Escape Plug-In Hybrid offers:
- A 4-cylinder 2.5-liter engine that offers 200 hp is paired with the electric motor, which provides a combined 221 total horsepower.
- They’re joined by a continuously-variable automatic transmission.
- Communicative steering
- A smooth ride
- A seamless transition between electric and gas and power
This hybrid offers a fuel economy level of 117 mpg on highways/ 93 mpg in the city.
- It has a 37-mile electric range.
- This hybrid offers a truly generous passenger space with comfortable seating.
- It also offers plenty of cargo space.
- It isn’t available with AWD.
- The interior feels a bit cheaper than some other hybrid SUVs.
- It has ho-hum handling.
3. 2022 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid
Plug-in hybrid efficiency and off-road capability come together in this subcompact hatchback according to Car and Driver.
There’s plenty of legroom in the front and plenty of room in the second row of the Crosstrek Hybrid. A Wi-Fi hotspot, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto are all included in Subaru’s Crosstrek Hybrid. Furthermore, there are USB ports on both rows of seats and six speakers in the audio system. The 2022 interior color scheme is navy blue leather.
Despite its subcompact size, the Crosstrek Hybrid 2022 offers the practicality of a hatchback and the capability of an off-road SUV. Paint color options include Cool-Gray Khaki, Lagoon Blue Pearl, Magnetite Gray Metallic, and Crystal White Pearl. The Sport model offers enhanced features like faux-carbon-fiber trim, new unique 17-inch wheels, and advanced driving modes.
35 mpg plus 90 mpg-e combined, its 8.8-kWh battery allows it to travel 17 miles on a single charge and the total range is 480 miles. The total output is 148 hp and it can go from 0-60 mph in 8.3 seconds.
The base price starts at $24,320.
- Combined plug-in hybrid efficiency with a rugged exterior design
- Tough yet cute styling
- 8.8-kWh battery plus an electric motor
- With a single charge, it can travel 17 miles
- High safety scores and strong driving dynamics
- The battery pack diminishes the cargo area
- Currently only available in California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
4. Ford Explorer Hybrid 2022
The biggest news for the 2022 Ford Explorer Hybrid, according to Curbed, is the fact that it’s such a big hit with law enforcement. In fact, the NYPD is well on its way to turning into an all-SUV fleet! And, it’s not just New York that has SUV-ified its police force. Over half of the police vehicles sold in the U.S. since 2017 have been cop-customized Explorers.
For 2020, Ford announced the Explorer Hybrid in its redesigned non-hybrid trim as an all-new vehicle. The gas-only Explorer received a few changes in 2022, but the hybrid SUV did not. The following are perhaps the less significant, but no less important, changes for this year.
This popular hybrid seats six comfortably and offers 18.2 cubic feet of cargo room behind the third-row seats and 47.9 behind the second-row for a total of 87.8 cubic feet. It also offers a massive underfloor bin that’s located behind the third-row seat and several smaller side bins that flank it. In addition, a convenient hands-free liftgate comes standard.
Ample front seat space and an adjustable driving position make this SUV a pleasure to drive. And, a tri-zone climate-control system, remote start, a SYNC 3 infotainment system with an 8-inch touchscreen, proximity keyless entry, four USB ports, satellite radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, wireless device charging, Wi-Fi hot spot, and 12-speaker audio are among the standard features.
The engine is a V-6 3.3 Liter/204 hp for plenty of power, a 10-speed automatic transmission, and handling that’s good overall. The exterior may not have changed much for 2022 but the exterior colors available include Stone Blue to Atlas Blue, Agate Black to Carbonized Gray, as well as Burgundy Velvet, Rapid Red, Forged Green, Star White, and Iconic Silver.
This hybrid gives you a respectable 23 mpg City/26 mpg Highway and 94 mpg-e.
Prices start at around $40k and can go up to $60k or more, depending on the model and equipment choices.
- You can select up to three different trims
- Good poised handling
- Big cargo hold
- The second and third rows of seats aren’t quite as comfortable as some of its rivals
- Disappointing cabin materials in the interior
- The jarring transition from gas to electric
5. 2022 Plug-In Hybrid Kia Sorento
The 2022 Plug-In Hybrid Kia Sorento offers a 2k pound towing capacity and 177 horsepower and a 32-mile battery-only range plus a 460-mile total range.
Consumers love everything about the interior of this hybrid and especially the optional panoramic sunroof. All three rows of the Sorento are spacious enough for adults in spite of the small SUV classification. Even tall adults will have plenty of room in the second row, compared to some other dedicated two-row SUVs. Although it’s a bit of a squeeze to get back there, even the third row is hospitable to most adults, and getting in is pretty easy.
This all-new plug-in hybrid Sorento model is a member of the fourth Sorento generation that was first introduced in 2021. Its exterior is available in both an SX and an SX Prestige trim level. In addition, the six-speed automatic transmission drives an all-wheel-drive system with torque vectoring and a locking center differential.
EPA-estimated 34 mpg combined and 32 miles of electric range (EPA-estimated) .
This SUV has an MSRP starting at $45,190 and could be eligible for a $6,587 Federal Tax Credit.
- An impressive number of both optional and standard features
- Plenty of second-row legroom
- An infotainment system that’s easy-to-use
- A rather high price tag
- A ride that tends to be a little bit busy
- Lackluster acceleration
6. 2022 Hyundai Tucson Plug-In Hybrid
According to Green Car Reports, it’s the compact alternative to the Santa Fe. It may be a bit smaller but it’s also more efficient.
There’s ample space inside, with great headroom and knee room for both front and rear passengers. And, it’s only a volume knob away from being truly excellent.
There is something really distinctive about its outré shape. This plug-in hybrid combines the versatility of plug-in power with comfort and style. And, in addition to distinctive styling, it also offers mechanical all-wheel drive, and plenty of special features.
This SUV has EPA ratings of 31 miles/33 mpg combined and 80 mpg-e.
The base SEL model starts at $36,645 and the tax credit is $6,587.
- It has excellent powertrain smoothness.
- It has three modes to choose from.
- The ride is quite composed and taut overall.
- The mid-grade finishes and black-on-black cabin need improvement.
- The engine moans a bit more than it should.
7. 2022 Lincoln Corsair Grand Touring
As the brand best known for Town Cars and Continentals enters the plug-in age, it retains many of the hallmarks of those models, like a hushed, conservative attitude. There’s a lot to like here, including a cautious and conservative approach to the electric side. And, a 2.5-liter Atkinson-cycle inline-4 provides 165 horsepower to the Corsair Grand 2022.
The Corsair interior weathers all but the largest bumps and it offers not only a luxurious cabin but also a very well-designed interior overall. It feels luxurious and plush from the minute you step inside. And, in an SUV with a compact-car footprint, there’s plenty of space for four six-foot passengers and their bags. In addition, the seats are widely adjustable and have unique thigh bolsters that are dual-extending as well as a surround with nicely padded surfaces. And, the seats fold down for making more cargo space.
The 2022 Lincoln Corsair Grand Touring is available in a wide range of colors, including Elite Blue, Asher Gray, Infinite Black, and Silver Radiance. The other colors available at an additional cost include Ocean Drive Blue, Flight Blue, Bronze Smoke, and Red Carpet. This SUV also offers AWD with a motor that delivers 67 hp as well as 110 lb-ft of torque to its rear wheels for a combined 266 hp. The Corsair Grand Touring SUV for 2022 goes 0 to 60 in about 7.0 seconds. This vehicle provides great drivability, and the friction pads combine well with regenerative braking, allowing precise stopping.
Mileage is 37 mpg highway and 78 mpg-e and the 14.4-kWh battery pack charges up in approximately three hours.
The prices for the 2022 Corsair Grand Touring starts at $51,810, however, this SUV is also eligible for a $6,843 federal EV tax credit.
- Road noise is minimal
- Minimal wind noise
- A soft ambiance in the cabin
- The steering feels a bit light and a little sloppy around the center.
- It’s too eager to start up the gas engine even when it has a charge.
8. 2022 Lexus NX450h+
This is the most cost-efficient, technologically advanced, and even the quickest NX model on today’s market.
This Lexus SUV has a fresh new well-designed plush interior and some of the interior technological options include:
- Front Cross-traffic Alert
- Lane Change Assist
- Panoramic View Monitor
- Steering-wheel Touch Sensor
With rounded lines and curves, it blends in better with the compact crossover crowd. And, although it looks a bit shorter, it’s actually higher and longer than the previous model. And, premium triple-beam headlamps, cornering lamps, and even headlamp washers are some of the exterior extras that make this SUV special. There’s a 2.5 liter 4 cylinder natural aspirated engine under the hood that produces 181 horsepower, an electric motor at the rear that produces 53 horsepower, and an electric motor at the front that produces 179 horsepower.
36 mpg city and 84 mpg combined/city/highway plus 84 mpg-e.
This Lexus SUV has a base price of $60,370.
- The 18.1 kWh 355 V lithium-ion battery charging time is only 4.5 hours at 220V.
- This model is at the top of the NX lineup.
- The steering is pretty direct.
- The steering wheel-mounted buttons aren’t very user-friendly.
- The electronic door handles are too complicated.
9. 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander
Thanks to its new sleeker bodywork and a more luxurious cabin, the Mitsubishi Outlander seems to be totally reimagined for 2022. In fact, one of their mottos says that you can start taking on bigger adventures in your 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander. Sounds good, so let’s see what’s new for 2022:
The interior is greatly improved, offering some simple yet elegant design features and significantly upgraded materials. You can bring your family, friends maybe even a beloved pet or two thanks to the standard third-row seating.
The 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander’s exterior is all-new in comparison to previous year’s models, including:
- A lot going on in the front with a slightly rounded nose and multiple headlight setup
- A black-finish grille that houses cameras and sensors (optional 360-degree camera)
- A longer 185 inches in length (longer than competitors).
- Wider and taller as well.
- A back end that’s relatively attractive even with its new scaled-back look
Gas Mileage & Safety Features:
The combined/city/highway fuel efficiency rating is 26/24/30 mpg. And, the 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander offers numerous safety features, including (but not limited to):
- Available automated emergency braking and forward-collision warning,
- Available rear cross-traffic alert and blind-spot monitoring,
- Available lane-keeping assist and lane-departure warning,
- Impressive crash-test results (can be seen on the NHTSA and the IIHS websites).
Naturally, this front-engine, all-wheel-drive, seven-passenger, four-door SUV has different prices for each model, starting at a base price of $27,290 and going up to the $37,000 range. This makes it a bit pricier than some other compact crossovers
- There are unexpectedly satisfying handling characteristics, elegant features, and stylish exterior styling that really stand out among all of the other fuel-efficient SUVs.
- With its extensive makeover, the new Outlander has returned to relevance in the SUV market.
- A surprising amount of athleticism is evident in its driving manners.
- Mitsubishi actually offers one of the best powertrains and limited warranties vs. most other 2022 SUVs and compact crossovers, including a limited warranty covering five years/60,000 miles and a powertrain warranty covering 10 years/100,000 miles.
- It still could use an improved engine and transmission.
- The 181-hp/four-cylinder powertrain is unremarkable and actually can be a liability at highway speeds, needing improved value to surpass its top rivals.
- Does not feature complimentary scheduled maintenance.
10. 2022 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid
The 2022 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is a top pick among compact SUVs according to Kelley Blue Book’s Best Compact SUVs of 2022 and 2023. As one of the best-selling among all of the compact crossovers worldwide, the RAV4 has sold more 10 million since its 1994 launch. It’s a compact crossover that employs technology that may not be considered exactly cutting edge but it’s still modern enough to wow potential buyers along with the benefit of its outstanding pedigree. For 2022, it offers a number of new features, including:
- Plenty of cargo space is available from 37.6 cubic feet (behind split rear seats), or 69.8 cubic feet (when folded down).
- They added a locking glove box with added LED interior illumination.
- Interior switches are now Illuminated added (XLE trim & above).
- The Limited trim model offers an eight-way-power-adjustable front passenger seat.
- The new infotainment system is extremely easy to use.
- The new SE trim package is joining the lineup.
- LED fog lights have been added (XLE Premium & above).
- New paint color is now offered on the TRD Off-Road version.
- They added some new wheel designs and several different colors.
- Thinner headlights have been added (all but the LE model).
- The 2022 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid offers the following :
- 219 horsepower (as opposed to 203 in the regular version)
- Better fuel economy than the regular version (by an average of approximately 10 mpg)
- The drivetrain adds a great deal more muscle.
- Overall, the fuel economy varies slightly between models as follows:
- LE FWD and Limited FWD: mpg- 27 city/35 hwy
- LE AWD: mpg- 27 city/34 hwy
- XLE/XLE Premium FWD: mpg- 28 city/35 hwy
- Adventure AWD, Limited AWD: mpg- 25 city/33 hwy
- TRD Off-Road AWD: mpg- 25 city/32 hwy
- Great fuel economy
- Plenty of standard safety features
- Very spacious interior
- Good resale value
- The cabin has been found by some consumers to be somewhat noisy
- It’s actually one of the more expensive SUV choices
Final Thoughts About The Ten Most Fuel-Efficient SUVs in 2022
Now that you’ve seen some of the stats, features, and pros and cons of ten of the most fuel-efficient SUVs of 2022, hopefully, you’ll be better armed for choosing which one would suit your needs the best. From the sportiest to the most luxurious, they all fit the bill when it comes to being good on fuel and electric power, so now the only question is which one would fit your budget and lifestyle the best.
You can also read:
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- 20 Hybrid Cars to Consider for 2022
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