While the Yaris struggles a bit on the motorway with its 114bhp, the steering is a joy around town, and anyone in the market for a supermini should strongly consider it.

1. Renault Clio E-Tech Hybrid – £21,995

The latest Renault Clio latest comes with the option of an ‘E-Tech’ hybrid powertrain. Prices start from just under £22,000, yet it still comes with almost every bit of kit you could possibly need, including LED headlights, cruise control, a seven-inch infotainment touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a seven-inch digital instrument cluster behind the steering wheel and plenty of safety tech too.

Combining two electric motors with Renault’s 1.6-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine results in fuel economy of up to 64.2mpg on paper, while 138bhp is enough for 0-62mph in under 10 seconds. This performance isn’t earth-shattering, but the Clio’s sharp steering and comfortable ride make it one of the more capable cars in its class.

Cheapest hybrid cars

  1. Renault Clio E-Tech Hybrid – £21,995
  2. Toyota Yaris – £22,110
  3. Dacia Jogger Hybrid 140 – £22,595
  4. Mazda 2 Hybrid – £22,720
  5. Honda Jazz – £22,930
  6. Suzuki Vitara Full Hybrid – £23,249
  7. Toyota Yaris Cross – £24,840
  8. Renault Captur E-Tech Hybrid – £25,695
  9. Hyundai Kona Hybrid – £26,315
  10. Suzuki S-Cross Hybrid – £27,249

Different types of hybrid

There are different types of hybrid car, and working out the difference can feel daunting if you’re unaccustomed to this technology. We won’t go into great detail about the differences between each type of hybrid here, although there are three main ones you should be aware of.

The first are ‘mild hybrids’. These typically use an electric motor to give an engine (usually petrol, diesel hybrids are rarer) a boost under acceleration. Crucially, mild hybrids cannot move under the power of an electric motor alone.

The second are ‘full hybrids’. Unlike mild hybrids, these can use electric motors to drive the wheels, although this is usually only for very short distances; no more than a mile or two. Their limited electric range is caused by their typically small batteries, which collect energy lost while braking or directly from the engine itself.

The third are ‘plug-in hybrids’, often abbreviated to  ‘PHEVs’. Their batteries are much larger than those of full hybrids, so much so that they need to be charged via a cable when parked. The very latest PHEVs can offer more than 60 miles of electric-only range, so it’s realistic to complete short journeys without needing to use the engine (or any fuel in the tank) at all.

Looking to cut out combustion entirely? Check out our list of the cheapest electric cars

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