1. Toyota Prius
MSRP: $24,000 - $29,805
Invoice: $22,560 - $27,744
Fuel economy: 51 city/48 highway
The Toyota Prius is the grand-daddy of the hybrid world now, and accounted for 60 percent of the Prius family sales in June.
If you're somehow not familiar with the Prius car, it's a gas-electric hybrid that sets the standard for environmentally-friendly transportation. This front-wheel drive, five-door lift-back delivers comfort, value and a smooth ride, as well as impressive fuel economy and low emissions. For those jittery about making a jump into a newer-technology vehicle, Toyota offers an 8-year, 100,000-mile warranty on the hybrid-related components.
2. Toyota Prius C
MSRP: $18,950 - $23,230
Invoice: $18,003 - $21,625
Fuel economy: 53 city/46 highway
Sales of the Prius C accounted for 17 percent of the family's June numbers. The model is a new addition to the Prius family in 2012, expanding a lineup of gas-electric hybrid vehicles that has set the standard for environmentally-friendly transportation. This subcompact front-wheel drive, five-door hatchback delivers comfort, excellent fuel economy and low emissions in an urban-friendly size.
3. Honda Civic Hybrid
Fuel economy: 44 city/44 highway
The fuel economy of the Civic Hybrid has been the subject of legal proceedings in the past, but Honda has won those challenges. The model has been completely redesigned for 2012.
To differentiate the hybrid model from the rest of the Civic line-up, features like automatic climate control, LED brake lights, turn signals in the exterior mirrors, a unique grille and hybrid specific screens in the i-MID are standard. A voice-activated navigation system with FM traffic updates is optional.
4. Honda Insight
MSRP: $18,500 - $21,965
Invoice: $17,629 - $20,917
Fuel economy: 41 city/44 highway
The Insight is also powered by Honda's Integrated Motor Assist system, which is a combination of a 1.3-liter gas engine and a 13-hp electric motor, all attached to a continuously variable transmission. The engine and motor combined generate 98-hp and 123-lb.ft of torque, and provide 40-plus mpg fuel economy.
The base trim offers six airbags, anti-lock brakes, electronic stability and traction control, automatic climate control, power windows, locks and mirrors, keyless entry and a two-speaker CD audio system with an auxiliary input. The LX trim adds floor mats, cruise control with steering wheel controls, a security system and a four-speaker CD audio system with USB interface.
5. Honda CR-Z
MSRP: $19,695 - $21,255
Invoice: $18,763 - $20,243
Fuel economy: 31 city/37 highway
The CR-Z is powered by Honda's Integrated Motor Assist system, which is a combination of a 1.5-liter gas engine and a 13-horsepower electric motor, all attached to either a six-speed manual, or a continuously variable transmission (CVT). The engine and motor combined generate 122-hp and 128-lb.ft of torque.
Available in two trims, Base and EX, both include six airbags, electronic stability control, anti-lock brakes, automatic climate control, power windows, locks and mirrors, keyless entry, a CD audio system with an auxiliary input and USB connection, alloy wheels and cruise control.