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Climate change has increased in the last decade, but so have Canadians’ efforts to tackle it. Whether it’s by recycling, consuming less meat, or conserving water and energy, there are many ways to take an active role in caring for the environment. Electric and hybrid cars have become an increasingly popular transportation choice to reduce one’s carbon footprint. Let’s take a deeper look at the best hybrid cars in Canada and the benefits of it.

What Is A Hybrid Car? 

Hybrid vehicles offer the best of both worlds. A hybrid car comes with both an electric motor and a gasoline engine. Both engines can be used interchangeably. In other words, hybrids can be powered by both gasoline and electricity. 

Best Hybrid Cars In Canada

There are many hybrid models for you to choose from. Let’s take a look at some of the models below. 

Best hybrid cars Canada
Source: MotorTrend

Hyundai Sonata

With a larger battery, the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid has less room for passengers and cargo. What it lacks in space is made up for with efficiency, as you can drive fully electric for 47 KM with 52 mpg in combined fuel economy. New models start at around $28,000 – $36,500.

Best hybrid cars Canada
Source: Car and Driver

Toyota RAV4

With a variable transmission and modern safety features, the Toyota RAV4 has a stylish aesthetic, along with efficient fuel. New models start at $30,000 to $39,000. New models also come with a 36-month (60,000 km) vehicle warranty, so you know you’re covered when driving. 

Toyota Prius Prime Hybrid
Source: Car and Driver

Toyota Prius Prime

A well-known model, the Toyota Prius is a classic car. Its hybrid version features a 2.0 litre 4-cylinder DOHC 16-valve engine and safety features such as forward-collision warning and Toyota Safety Sense 3.0. New models start at around $38,100.

Honda Accord Hybrid
Source: Car and Driver

Honda Accord Hybrid

If you’re looking for a medium-sized sedan that is fuel-efficient and leaves less of a carbon footprint, consider the Honda Accord Hybrid. This hybrid offers optimal space for passengers and cargo, as well as updated tech features. If you’re looking to buy it new, the Honda Accord Hybrid starts at around $46,400.

Hyundai Elantra Hybrid
Source: MotorTrend

Hyundai Elantra Hybrid

The Hyundai Elantra Hybrid is a 4-seater sedan that has an MSRP of $29,300. This compact sedan offers a smooth ride and easy-to-use controls. It also has great fuel economy and has driving range of 894 km. The Hyundai Elantra has additional features such as keyless entry and remote engine start.

Benefits Of Buying A Hybrid Car In Canada

There are many benefits to choosing a hybrid car as your primary transportation, including:

  • Less pollution – Running on both gas and electricity, hybrid cars are cleaner energy-wise and emit less pollution than cars powered only by gas. 
  • Less fuel-dependent – Being overall powered by only a portion of gas, hybrid cars contribute to the country’s reduced dependence on oil. Hybrids also help balance the cost of gasoline. 
  • Efficient engines– Hybrids tend to have more efficient gasoline engines because they are not solely powered by gas. This allows for a smaller and lighter gas engine. 
  • Higher resale potential – Generally, the resale value of a hybrid is higher than that of a gas-only vehicle. This is because hybrid versions of popular vehicles are in high demand; so, you are likely to recover more of your original investment if you were to trade in your car or resell it. 
  • Regenerative braking – Energy produced by hybrid cards is saved and fed to their batteries. This increases the charge in the electric motor, extends brake life, and reduces overall fuel consumption. 

How To Buy A Hybrid Car Online

When it comes to purchasing a hybrid car, you have several options, one that you may not have heard of before.

We all know that going to a dealership is the most popular (and maybe the most annoying) option. But did you know that you can purchase a hybrid vehicle online? And better yet, a used hybrid. Online used car retailers, like Clutch, are changing the way Canadians purchase their used vehicles. 

So, when purchasing a used car online, here are the top questions you should ask.

What is your return policy?

Most online used car retailers will likely have a pretty good return policy, usually a week to 10 days. But it’s always a good idea to ask. 

Do you offer a multi-point inspection?

A multi-point inspection is important when it comes to purchasing a used vehicle. Especially online. Again most used car retailers will offer this. But you should still ask to make sure that their inspection includes the points you’re most concerned about. 

Can you help me secure financing?

Most consumers need a loan to purchase a car. If you can get your car and your loan from one place, that’s great. Ask about getting a quote or preapproved so you compare your options and choose the best one. 

Do you deliver?

If you’re purchasing a car online, it’s likely that the warehouse or dealership is far from your house. Having the online retailer deliver your new to you car directly to your door is a great added perk. 

Ways To Finance A Hybrid Car

If you are unable to purchase a hybrid car up-front, don’t worry! There are plenty of financing options available to you. Let’s take a look at some of them. 

Car Loan 

If you have a steady income and a decent credit score, your best bet on financing is to go with a car loan from a bank. Car loans are ideal because they tend to have the lowest interest rates because they’re secured with collateral (the car).  

If you have poor credit or a lot of debt, you may want to consider getting a car loan from an alternative lender. These lenders usually have more flexible requirements. The main drawback of borrowing from an alternative lender is that the interest rates can be higher. However, this may be worth the cost if your credit isn’t good enough to secure funding from a bank.

Personal Loan From A Bank

Another way you can finance your hybrid vehicle is through a personal loan. The great thing about a personal loan is that you can spend the funds however you’d like, even if the expenses are not directly related to your car. While a personal loan may be more flexible than a car loan, it may come with higher interest rates because they’re unsecured. 

Directly From Your Dealership 

If you have bad credit and are having trouble obtaining a car or personal loan from a bank, there are a couple of approaches you can take to finance your hybrid car. You could wait for your credit rating to go up, or reduce your current debt loads. However, this can take a lot of time. Alternatively, you can look to a dealership for financing options, many of which specialize in loans for drivers with bad credit. You may be faced with higher interest rates, but not much more than what any alternative lender would offer. 

Things To Consider When Getting A Hybrid Car

Despite all the benefits listed above, there are a few other factors to consider before making a decision to buy one, including the cost, maintenance and overall performance, and energy consumption. 

Cost

Most hybrid and electric cars are significantly more expensive than regular, gas-only vehicles. However, if the initial cost is less of a concern for you, you might feel good about spending a little bit of extra money on your hybrid vehicle. 

Maintenance

Since hybrids are less common than other vehicles, there are fewer mechanics with the knowledge and equipment to repair them. So, they are usually more expensive to repair

Performance

Hybrids are built to save energy; so, speed and performance aren’t the top priority. Speed and acceleration are usually not as high in hybrids as in other cars, so you need to consider whether or not this is a drawback before deciding to purchase a hybrid vehicle. 

Energy Consumption While Charging

To charge your electric vehicle, you will consume a lot of energy from the electrical grid. This can result in higher electricity bills for your household. Some provinces have time-of-use energy pricing, meaning the energy rates are cheaper depending on the time of day you consume energy. For example, time-of-use pricing in Ontario would make evenings and weekends the cheapest time of day to charge your hybrid car.

Battery Replacement

Eventually, most hybrids will require you to replace their battery, which can be quite expensive. 

Check The Government Incentives For Buying A Hybrid Vehicle

One of the most attractive benefits of owning a hybrid vehicle is the tax incentives and rebates the Government of Canada offers.

Depending on your car model, you may be eligible for the Zero-Emission Vehicles (iZEV) Program. You can get up to $5,000 with this program. To see if you qualify, please visit the Government of Canada website

Best Financing Options For Hybrid Cars

AmountInterestTerm (Months)
Loans Canada Logo - Bad Credit Loans Canada$500 - $50,000Up to 46.96%12 - 84Learn more
ClutchVaries8.49% +24 - 96Learn more
Canada Drives$500 - $35,00029.99% - 46.96%9 - 60Learn more
SkyCap Financial$500 - $10,00012.99% - 39.99%9 - 36Learn more
Carloans411$5,000 - $40,000Varies12 - 72Learn more
Canada Auto Finance$5,000 - $45,0004.90 % - 29.95%36 - 72Learn more
Eden ParkVaries11.9% +12 - 84Learn more
Splash Auto Finance by RifcoUp to $50,000Varies12 - 84Learn more

Final Thoughts

Hybrids represent advancement to a cleaner, carbon-free future. With tax incentives and a variety of financing options, owning or leasing a hybrid can be attainable. Your wallet will benefit in the long run with the savings on fuel, as well as the environment in hybrids’ low carbon footprint. If you’re looking for the right financing to help you purchase a new hybrid vehicle, we can help.

Best Hybrid Cars In Canada FAQs

What is an electric car?

An electric vehicle (EV) uses an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine and is powered by electricity from the electrical grid. Running on electricity, EVs do not emit exhaust and do not use gasoline. This makes them an environmentally-friendly choice for transportation, as their carbon footprint is much lower than vehicles that run on gas. 

What is the difference between a full hybrid and a plug-in hybrid?

A plug-in hybrid can be recharged by plugging it in at home or at a charging station. The battery of a full hybrid car is recharged using the vehicle’s gas-powered engine.  

What happens if I can’t pay my hybrid car loan? 

It’s important to note that car loans have liens on the titles until they are paid in full. This means that you don’t own your hybrid until you have paid off the entire balance. So if you miss one or more payments, the lender can repossess the car and sell it to recoup payment.
Chrissy Kapralos avatar on Loans Canada
Chrissy Kapralos

Chrissy is a Toronto-based communications advisor. With an English degree from the University of Toronto and editing courses under her belt from Ryerson University, she has continued her lifelong passion for writing and editing. In addition to working for Loans Canada on a variety of financial topics, Chrissy has a few years of resume writing and editing under her belt, and takes great pleasure in helping people find work that fits with their experience and passions. When she isn't working, you can find her practicing yoga, hanging out with her dog, reading up on financial and real estate news, or planning her next trip abroad.

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