Consumer Reports recently announced that two alternative-fuel offerings have been rated best in their respective classes after a recent round of testing.
The Ram 1500 EcoDiesel scored 82 points in CR‘s hands, helped mainly by the diesel’s impressive 20 mpg combined and 27 mpg highway observed during the test. Previous winners included the regular Ram 1500 V8 with 81 points, and the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LT with 80.
“These are about the same fuel-economy numbers that we typically see in a mid-sized SUV,” said Jack Fisher, director of automotive testing at CR. “The Ram is currently the only [full-size] truck to offer turbo-diesel technology. It will be interesting to see what impact it will have on the half-ton market.”
CR found the EcoDiesel to be just as refined as the regular gasoline V8, and while they did note some “diesel clatter at idle and low speeds, but the engine noise is well-hushed when cruising.”
The Toyota Highlander Hybrid also impressed with its 25-mpg combined during CR‘s evaluations, despite it being loaded with convenience features and have the potential to tow 3,500 pounds. “Power delivery is smooth… [and] transitions between electric power and the gas engine are seamless.”
Beyond the Highlander’s frugality, testers also reported that it handled bumps and corners better, and that while the regenerative braking could be “a little touchy” that “stopping distances were good.”