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Most (and least) cost-effective hybrids

How much it costs to save a gallon of gas varies widely, even among closely-related vehicles.

Toyota Highlander Hybrid
Toyota Highlander Hybrid
Hybrid value rank: 12
Time to recoup premium in fuel savings alone: 22.8 years
Typical cost: $39,448

Compared to: Toyota Highlander Limited with optional 3rd row seats

Hybrid cost premium: $6,986 (Based on Edmunds.com "True Market Value." No tax credits are available on Toyota vehicles.)

Overall mpg vs. non-hybrid: 25.7 vs. 22

Annual fuel saved per year: $307 (99 gallons)

Despite Toyota's reputation for reliability, it's doubtful that many Highlander Hybrid owners will have their SUVs long enough to see this investment pay off financially. Of course, it could be said to pay off in terms of cleaner air and a slowing in the rate of global warming. But it that's your concern, why not skip the non-optional third-row seats and just get a Ford Escape Hybrid or Saturn Vue Green Line, either of which will do better in that regard.

AOL Autos: Vehicle details


Costs

Prius

Malibu

Camry

Escape

Vue

Mariner

Civic

Altima

Aura

GS450h

RX400h

Highlander

LS600h
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