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Top 5: Best used hybrid and electric cars

As the concern surrounding climate change continues to rise, more motorists are starting to look to electric and hybrid vehicles. There is a number of reasons for this, which are outlined in our reasons to buy an electric or hybrid vehicle blog.

However, a number of new electric and hybrid vehicles still command a premium that can be hard to justify in these times of austerity. Below is a list of the best used cars that are guaranteed to make you popular within the local Greenpeace community.

Nissan Leaf

Kicking off the list is Britain's best selling electric vehicle. The Leaf has proven very popular among customers, who value the Leaf's ability to do everything a petrol-powered car does, but with considerably lower running costs.

Although performance isn't quite on par with some of the bigger electric vehicles out there, the battery output on the Leaf allows it to keep up with modern traffic easily. A full charge will last between 120 and 225 miles, depending on which battery size and generation of Leaf you invest in. With low-mileage examples available under £10,000, they represent good value for money.

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nissan leaf
bmw i3

BMW i3

Here's proof you can get behind the wheel of a premium electric motor for a relatively modest outlay. The BMW i3 has been around since 2013 and remains a firm favourite among those wanting an innovative design and relaxing driving experience.

The 33kWh battery offers around 170bhp and launches the i3 to 62mph in just 7.3 seconds. Although speed isn't the point of the i3, that's pretty brisk even by petrol standards. Inside is where the i3 excels; high levels of comfort and refinement define the experience, while four usable seats and rear suicide doors make this BMW electric car remarkably practical.

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Toyota Prius

Everybody has heard about the Toyota Prius, except those who haven't discovered fire yet. The reason is simple, Toyota has shifted over 1.5 million of the things worldwide, making it the best-selling hybrid to date! Opt for the latest generation of Prius and you'll get up to 94.1mpg while emitting a ridiculously low 70g/km of CO2. Pingu will be pleased.

The smart interior is very comfortable and well insulated from the outside world. There is a large array of instruments in the centre of the top of the dashboard, while the central console blends seamlessly down towards the arm rest. It's all very futuristic and driver friendly. The driving dynamics may not be the Prius' strong point, but it makes up for that with low running costs and unparalleled reliability.

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Toyota Prius
Honda CR-Z

Honda CR-Z

A number of the hybrid vehicles available could be criticized for being a bit... bland. However, Honda came to the rescue with the quirky CR-Z, a low slung coupé that is genuine fun to look at and drive.

The little 1.5-litre i-VTEC petrol engine combines with the electric motor to provide 122bhp, which may not sound like a lot, but the lightweight nature of the CR-Z means it is pretty nippy. Better yet, put the car in 'Econ' mode, and you will see up to 52mpg.

The CR-Z stopped being produced in 2016, but residuals remain strong because it is a quirky coupé that is engaging to drive (an unusual recipe in the world of hybrids).

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Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Not everyone wants a low slung hybrid coupé. However, we do know SUVs are very much 'in' at the moment. That's where the Outlander PHEV comes in.

The naturally aspirated 2.4-litre petrol engine is never going to set the world on fire, but the Outlander's ability to drive up to 30 miles purely on battery power more than makes up for this. Better yet, the batteries can recharge through the petrol engine, or you can plug it in when you get home.

Practicality is where the Outlander shines as you'd imagine. There's heaps of space in the front and back for passengers, while the 463 litre boot means there is a vast amount of storage space. The rear seats can even recline; that's a luxury feature right there!

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mitsubishi outlander

Final verdict

As you can see, there is a wide variety of electric and hybrid cars to suit every appetite. The Nissan Leaf and Toyota Prius are the cars worth highlighting in our opinion. And based on their combined worldwide sales, the general public agrees with that too.