With a Hybrid model earning highway fuel economy of 23 mpg, the 2012 Chevy Tahoe can be one of the greenest full-size SUVs of all, up there with the diesel edition of the Mercedes-Benz GL Class. However, the Hybrid's a very small percentage of sales, and otherwise, the Tahoe lineup gets fair overall economy--though it's still at the high end of the sport-ute range.
The standard Tahoe and its 5.3-liter V-8 earn the ute an EPA score of 15/21 mpg. Compared with vehicles like the Nissan Armada at 12/18 mpg, the Tahoe's a big improvement--but when compared to eight-passenger crossovers like the Honda Pilot (18/25 mpg), it's disappointing.
The Tahoe Hybrid is an expensive way to improve that fuel economy. With its motors and batteries, the Hybrid earns an EPA-estimated 20 mpg city, 23 highway, which means it goes nearly 50 percent farther per gallon on regular gasoline than most full-size utes--while it also has comparable performance and towing and hauling ability.All standard Tahoe models are also E85 (85-percent ethanol) compatible; but when you fuel up with ethanol you'll get an EPA-estimated 11 mpg city, 16 highway.