The 2010 Chevrolet Tahoe Hybrid takes the basic goodness of GM's full-size SUV and greens it up a bit. A V-8 engine powers most Tahoes, but in Hybrid models, a bigger V-8 is augmented with electric motors and battery power.
Traditional SUV buyers get a 320-horsepower, 5.3-liter V-8 mated to a six-speed automatic transmission, a seamless duo that provide steady and smooth acceleration with a hint of muscle car sound. In the Tahoe Hybrid, GM's version of the Two-Mode Hybrid it pioneered with BMW, Daimler and Chrysler team a big bin full of gears, clutches, gear sets, and generators to give the Tahoe the ability to drive on battery power alone or a blend of gas-generated and electric power.
The combination of a 332-hp 6.0-liter V-8 and the hybrid system's batteries and transmission will allow electric-only driving up to 27 mph; beyond that, both the gas engine and electric power are run in parallel, and the gas engine deactivates cylinders to save gas. All told, the rear-drive Tahoe Hybrid is rated at 21/22 mpg-a 50 percent boost over the standard Tahoe's city fuel economy. Four-wheel-drive models fall to 20/20 mpg.
Both the Tahoe and Hybrid can be ordered with rear- or four-wheel drive. The Tahoe offers standard single-ratio four-wheel drive, with a dual-range system available. The Hybrid's system is a more sophisticated, electronically switched system.
For our take on its comfort, styling, utility and features, click over to our 2010 Chevrolet Tahoe / Hybrid page.