6 Luxury Hybrids That Are More Mean than Green
You may have heard of the Porsche 918, the Ferrari LaFerrari, or perhaps the McLaren P1. The triumvirate of gas-hybrid hypercars can claim otherworldly press acclaim and legions of fans, but there's a good chance (a very good chance at that) that neither you nor I own one. That being said, the high-performance hybrid isn't out of reach to normal man - if that's the type of thing you're into. Don't believe us? Here are six of the highest-horsepower, performance-tuned hybrids that you'll find on the road today. RELATED: See the Mean and Green ActiveHybrid3
BMW ActiveHybrid 3
The 3 Series. It’s the very definition of what a performance sedan should be. Nimble, powerful, well composed. So BMW slotted 300 pounds worth of electric hybrid-y stuff underneath, and you know what, it’s still pretty quick.
The ActiveHybrid 3’s turbocharged 3.0-liter straight-six and 55-horsepower electric motor crank out 335 horsepower and 330 lb-ft of torque, good enough for zero to 60 mph in five seconds and 33 mpg on the highway. Not bad.
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Infiniti Q50 Hybrid
Meanwhile, in Japan. Infiniti has readied its Q50 saloon to wage war against the hegemony of the BMW four-door ruling class. And as you might expect, the Q50’s hybrid variant is a worthy competitor.
With its 3.5-liter V6 and 67-horsepower electric motor (for a total of 360 horsepower), the Q50 Hybrid dispenses of 60 mph in only 4.9 seconds and nabs a claimed 36 mpg on the highway. Sebastian Vettel must be happy.
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Lexus LS 600h L
The LS 600h is a delightful contradiction. It’s a hybrid, so it should sip fuel. Instead, it nets 23 mpg on the highway. It has a 5.0-liter V8 and all-wheel drive, so it should clobber a flat-out sprint. It manages to hit 60 mph in 5.5 seconds. Rather, it’s more of Lexus’ stab at the Rolls-Royce crowd.
Identity crisis or not, it does come with Snow Driving Mode, which is nice, especially when you’ve got 438 horsepower at the ready of your right foot.
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Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid
In its own right, the Panamera is a bit of an odd bird. But it’s hard not to love the funky four-door Porsche. It’s a big four-door saloon with a gaping hatchback, and in 570 horsepower Turbo S guise it’s brash as all hell.
But as a plug-in hybrid, it all sort of makes sense. The Panamera E-Hybrid wisps briskly away to the tune of a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 and can scoot around for an estimated 20 miles of all-electric motoring. Green calipers are a nice touch too.
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Ten years ago, people addressed hybrids with a negative connotation, at least as far as performance was concerned. The BMW i8 turns that notion on its head and gives it a fair romping.
BMW mates its potent three-cylinder turbo with a front-mounted electric motor for a combined 357 horsepower, 155 mph top speed, and fuel efficiency that righteously trounces the most miserly of gas-sippers – around 112 mpg. A real Kumbaya moment.
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Mercedes-Benz S550 Plug-in Hybrid
$94,000 – Expected MSRP
Merely days old, the all-new S550 Plug-in Hybrid came upon us and it sounds impressive. Underneath the hulking proportions of the goliath S-Class lies a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 and a torquey electric motor, good for a combined 436 horsepower and a sprint to 60 mph in less than 5.2 seconds. Green is good.
Like the Porsche, the S550 Plug-in can also zip around for 20 all-electric miles, but that’s just what we’ve come to expect from the segment-leading S-Class, just greener.