Over the years we’ve towed with quite a few hybrids, but not all have proven able tow cars. However, the Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine is right up with the best hybrids we’ve tested. It’s a deserving winner of our first ever ‘Best Hybrid’ award.

The petrol engine musters some 316bhp. The electric motor adds another 86bhp. When the two are working together the T8 really flies, towing from 30-60mph in 7.0 seconds. That’s the second quickest time this year, despite the XC90 being the heaviest car.

A high kerbweight is usually a benefit when it comes to stability, and the Volvo felt very secure in still air. Looking in the mirrors we could see some slight movement when the wind picked up, but nothing requiring any correction from the driver.

The hill-start test wasn’t really much of a test at all for the Volvo, which easily coped with the 1-in-6 gradient.

Our practicality test team was as impressed as the drivers. So many hybrids have poor boot space but the XC90 has lots of room for holiday luggage and towing-friendly features like trailer stability control.

In everyday driving, the XC90 is often happy to glide along on electric power alone – Volvo claims an all-electric range of up to 27 miles. That contributes to the Volvo’s eyebrow-raising 134.5mpg official economy figure. However, the battery soon runs low when towing, and we achieved no better than 16.1mpg while pulling a caravan.

The Volvo XC90 T8 makes most sense for a company car driver looking for a tax-efficient tow car, thanks to the lowly carbon dioxide emissions of just 49g/km.

2018
Category Winners
2018 Up to 1400kg

Skoda Octavia

2.0 TDI 150PS SE L DSG

2018 1400-1549kg

Skoda Superb

2.0 TDI 150PS SE L Executive

2018 1550-1699kg

Peugeot 5008

2.0 BlueHDi EAT8 S&S GT

2018 1700-1899kg

BMW 520d

Touring xDrive M Sport

2018 1900kg+

Land Rover Discovery

3.0 Td6 HSE

2018 Best Family SUV

Volvo XC40

Volvo XC40 D4 AWD R-Design Pro

2018 Best Petrol Tow Car

Kia Stinger

2.0 T-GDi GT-Line

2018 Best Ultralight Tow Car

Volkswagen Polo

1.0 TSI 115PS SEL DSG

2018 Fuel Economy Award

Hyundai i30 Tourer

1.6 CRDi 110PS Premium

Previous Winners
2017
1900kg+

Land Rover Discovery

3.0 Td6 HSE*

2016
1400-1549kg

Skoda Superb Hatch

2.0 TDI 150PS SE Business

2015
1400-1549kg

Volkswagen Passat Estate

2.0 TDI BMT 150PS SE Business DSG

2014
1400-1549kg

Nissan Qashqai

1.6 dCi (130PS) Stop/Start System Acenta Premium

2013
Up to 1424kg

Skoda Octavia

2.0 TDI CR 150PS Elegance

2012
1725–1899kg

Jaguar XF

2.2D Premium Luxury

2011
1425-1574kg

Volkswagen Passat Estate

2.0 TDI 170 Bluemotion Sport

2010
1900kg+

Land Rover Discovery 4

3.0 TDV6 XS

2009
1900kg+

Volvo XC60

D5 SE Geartronic

2008
1575-1724kg

Ford Mondeo Estate

2.0 TDCi Titanium auto

2007
1575-1724kg

Volkswagen Passat Estate

2.0 TDI Sport 4Motion

ContinueWe use cookies to give you the best browsing experience and to provide you with relevant content and advertising.
By continuing to use our website you are accepting our use of cookies as described in our Cookie Policy.