Besides electric vehicles, hybrid cars have also become a popular choice in recent years. Today at Kwiksure, we’ll take a look at three main types of hybrid cars: mild hybrid, full hybrid, and plug-in hybrid.
Micro hybrids are not true hybrid cars
Electric engines have a very limited impact on vehicle performance in micro hybrid cars. For instance, some models come equipped with an automated system that turns the engine on and off. Stopping in front of a traffic light will automatically turn off your engine, whereas releasing the brake will start it right away. Since this system is only used for starting and stopping the engine, it doesn’t provide continuous energy while you are driving. That’s why micro hybrids are technically not real hybrid vehicles.
A representative micro hybrid car model would be the Smart Fortwo micro hybrid drive (mhd).
1. Mild Hybrid
Mild hybrid cars cannot rely on electricity alone to run the vehicle. As your car is decelerating, parking, or braking, it will store up the electricity. Likewise, when you accelerate or have overloaded your vehicle, the electric motor can assist in driving the engine. Generally-speaking, mild hybrids are considered a cheap option among hybrid cars. Some hybrid cars will even save up energy and use it to power the auxiliary system instead, for interior temperature adjustments, lights, and more.
Representative mild hybrid car models include Honda’s Insight and Mercedes-Benz’s S400L Hybrid.
2. Full Hybrid
Full hybrid vehicles run on electricity only. At the same time, they have the ability to drive using two sources of power. This model contains the same type of electric assistance as the mild hybrid’s motor, but does not have the rechargeable battery of a pure electric vehicle. When driving, reversing, or cruising, your car is able to go on a pure electric car mode. While accelerating, the electric motor and the engine work together to drive the vehicle, thus improving energy efficiency and lowering carbon emissions.
Drivers won’t have to worry about running out of electricity mid-drive because full hybrids use two different systems interchangeably. However, keep in mind that they are better suited for short-distance trips. Long-distance trips driven at a fixed speed can’t unleash its energy-saving ability.
Representative car models include the Toyota Prius.
3. Plug-in Hybrids
Plug-in hybrids are the most similar to pure electric vehicles. Equipped with a large battery that can be externally charged, these cars have improved endurance and performance. Even when you’ve expended all your battery, you can still use fuel to keep driving. But because of the heavy battery, you won’t be saving on energy consumption if you drive only using petrol.
Representative models include the BMW 530e M Sport Saloon.
Should you buy hybrid cars?
Before you buy hybrid cars, consider the following points:
Cheaper than pure electric cars, hybrid vehicles are still more expensive than regular petrol cars.
Although hybrids can help you save up on fuel expenses, once the battery or engine encounters problems, you may need to exchange car parts by returning your car to the factory. The repair fees are even more costly than gasoline-powered cars. We recommend owners to pay attention to whether the original factory’s warranty lasts long enough when buying cars.
One for One Replacement Scheme is a government initiative to encourage more people to buy electric cars by reducing the vehicle first registration tax for car owners. However, there is currently no plan to extend this tax reduction to hybrid cars.
Hybrid cars release comparatively less exhaust than petrol cars, which leads to better fuel efficiency. For many environmentally-conscious people, hybrid cars are their first choice of vehicles.
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