HEY GOOD LOOKING: Lexus' CT200h is one of the stylish hybrids available in SA under R500 000. Image: Quickpic
Cape Town - If you’re not constrained too much, but can’t stretch your wallet to over half a bar, there are only four contenders to choose from.
This selection really does depend on your specific needs, however. Some are less conspicuous at being green, some are more luxurious, and one is actually exciting to drive.
Toyota Yaris Hybrid
The Yaris Hybrid is the cheapest of its kind available locally, and the only B-segment hatchback that features a hybrid powertrain.
There are a few competitors that have surpassed the Yaris as an overall package, but if you absolutely must be seen to be driving an environmentally conscious vehicle and are constricted by budget, then this is the best option.
Toyota Auris Hybrid
The Auris isn’t the most exciting vehicle available in the Golf-class, but then just like the Yaris, it boasts the only hybrid in its segment.
There’s adequate performance from the Atkinson Cycle 1.8-litre and electric motor combination, and the Auris Hybrid is only slightly thirstier than its Yaris stablemate.
The CR-Z is definitely the most fun to drive out of the assembled hybrids here, with the most power and torque. Oh, and unlike the competition it also boasts a manual gearbox.
It is slightly older than its rivals here, but there really is nothing else like it, and its wedge design still pleases the eye.
Lexus CT200h S
A significant step above the Auris, the CT200h S takes the fight to models from the luxurious Teutonic trio.
Although the price is steep, the entry-level Lexus is very well specced, and it makes use of the same tried and tested powertrain that does service in the Auris.