The 10 Best-Selling Hybrid Cars

10. Ford Fusion Hybrid
> 2012 sales: 3,182
> Type: Hybrid
> Starting price: $27,200
> EPA fuel efficiency: 47 mpg (combined)

The Ford Fusion Hybrid is the only alternative fuel vehicle on this list from Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F), although the company offers three other hybrid vehicles. The model has sold well, exceeding 12,000 cars sold in both 2009 and 2010, its first two years on the market. In 2011, however, sales fell by about 40% to 7,613 units. The model has the third-strongest fuel efficiency of any non-plug-in hybrid on this list after the standard Prius and Prius C. Among family cars, the 2012 Fusion Hybrid received the highest owner satisfaction score from Consumer Reports.

9. Honda Insight
> 2012 sales: 3,711
> Type: Hybrid
> Starting price: $18,500
> EPA fuel efficiency: 42 mpg (combined)

Despite being one of the least expensive top-selling hybrids, customers have soured on the Honda Insight. After selling more than 20,000 units in 2010, Honda Motor Co. Ltd. (NYSE: HMC) sold less than 4,000 during the first half of 2012. Reviews for the 2012 Insight were not positive. “The ride is stiff and choppy, and road noise is pronounced,” Consumer Reports noted. In its owner’s satisfaction survey, the car was rated worst among fuel-efficient hatchbacks. However, fuel economy exceeds 40 mpg, and it is one of only two cars on this list, alongside the Prius C, with a price below $20,000.

Also Read: The Biggest Gas Guzzlers on the Road

8. Honda Civic Hybrid
> 2012 sales: 3,879
> Type: Hybrid
> Starting price: $24,200
> EPA fuel efficiency: 44 mpg (combined)

In 2008, Honda sold more than 30,000 Civic Hybrids. The next year, sales were down by more than 50%, and by 2011 it sold fewer than 5,000 units. So far in 2012, the carmaker already has sold almost 4,000 Civic Hybrids, and seems likely to exceed 2011 car sales. The model is one of six alternative fuel vehicles offered by Honda. Another is the Civic Natural Gas, which according to Car and Driver, is the only compressed natural gas vehicle available to the American public. The Indianapolis Star recently reported that Honda will begin manufacturing Civic Hybrids domestically, in Greensburg, Ind., by spring 2013.

7. Kia Optima Hybrid
> 2012 sales: 4,501
> Type: Hybrid
> Starting price: $25,700
> EPA fuel economy: 37 mpg (combined)

From its debut in November 2011 through June 2012, Kia sold 6,660 Optima Hybrids. The only hybrid made by Kia sells at a starting price $4,500 higher than the standard 2013 Optima. The hybrid model is considerably more fuel efficient, driving 37 mpg versus 26 mpg for the regular model and costing the average driver $650 less per year, based on calculations by the Bureau of Energy. The Optima Hybrid has the same gas mileage, the same powertrain and almost the exact same starting price as the Sonata Hybrid manufactured by its affiliate company, Hyundai.

6. Lexus RX Hybrid
> 2012 sales: 5,065
> Type: Hybrid
> Starting price: $45,910
> EPA fuel economy: 30 mpg (combined)

Perhaps no luxury car maker has embraced alternative fuel vehicles as Lexus, which offers five hybrid models. The RX Hybrid’s starting price is $10,000 more than any other top-selling hybrid. The car gets just 30 mpg overall, and just 28 mpg on the highway — lower than many nonhybrid vehicles. The model still offers far better mileage than Lexus’s main SUV, the RX 350, which gets just 21 mpg. There are safety concerns for previous model years. In June, Lexus issued a recall for the 2010 model to address problems related to unintended acceleration caused by floor mats interfering with accelerator pedals.

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