Hybrid cars have become increasingly popular as of late. Not only have they lowered in price and become more stylish, but the government’s crackdown on diesel engines means that hybrids are becoming an attractive option for many.
However, while they are becoming more popular, we still don’t know much about them. In particular, we don’t really know the advantages and disadvantages of hybrid cars.
So in this article, we are going to look at the different types of hybrid cars and their advantages and disadvantages.
What is a hybrid car?
A hybrid car is a car that has two engines; an electric motor and a combustion engine.
The electric motor is used at low speeds. When your speed picks up, your combustion engine kicks in.
The electric battery then recharges itself using the combustion engine.
What is the difference between a hybrid and a plug-in hybrid?
There is another form of hybrid vehicle and that comes in the form of a plugin hybrid. A plugin hybrid is different in the way that the electric battery will be used until it runs down and then it will switch to the combustion engine.
You then charge up your plugin hybrid via a charging point in your home or when you are out and about (you’ve probably seen some charging points in car parks). You can also use a normal wall socket, as long as you are okay with the wires running out of your window.
So a hybrid runs on electricity at low speeds and then switches to fuel whereas a plugin hybrid runs on electricity until it gets to a certain point and then it switches to fuel.
What are the advantages of a hybrid car?
There are loads of advantages to hybrid cars, and more people are waking up to these advantages. Some of these include;
- Hybrids are better for the environment
This is the most obvious advantage of a hybrid. Hybrid cars use less fuel which means they emit fewer emissions. Therefore, they are great for our environment. If you are looking to be more environmentally friendly then a hybrid vehicle is perfect for you.
- They are cheaper than plug-in hybrids
Hybrid cars have come down in price by quite a bit since they were first released. Many hybrids are extremely affordable and they are also more affordable than plugin hybrids. This means that if you want to lower your carbon footprint but don’t want to spend a fortune on a plugin hybrid or even an electric car, then a hybrid is perfect.
- They recharge as you drive
This is more convenient for those who are doing high mileage and want to lower their carbon footprint.
A conventional hybrid has regenerative braking, which means the battery recharges as you drive. This means that you don’t have to stop to charge it up, it simply charges while you drive. So if you are doing quite a high mileage, you won’t have to worry about stopping to recharge your car.
- There are more options
There are more hybrid cars than ever before, so your options are not as limited as they once were. If you don’t want to be restricted to several cars like you were if you went for a plugin hybrid or electric car, then you will want to look at a hybrid.So there are some of the advantages of a hybrid car.
What are the disadvantages of a hybrid car?
However, there are some disadvantages. For example;
- They are not as environmentally friendly as plug-in hybrids or electric cars
If you are looking for the best way to reduce your carbon footprint then you might want to consider a plug-in hybrid or an electric car. They are more environmentally friendly as they emit fewer emissions or none at all in the case of an electric car.
- You may not get as many discounts or incentives
When hybrids first came out there were a number of discounts and incentives to encourage people to invest in these eco-friendly cars.
However, now plugin hybrids and electric cars exist, these incentives for hybrids have fizzled out.
That said, the price of hybrids have dropped considerably since they first hit the market.
- Servicing and maintenance charges can be higher
Because there are two engines and there is quite a bit of tech in those engines, maintenance costs can be higher.
Also, you may find your local garage doesn’t service or maintain hybrid cars because of the different technology. However, there are more and more garages that do this so it won’t be long before every garage can service and maintain hybrid cars.
- They aren’t as powerful
Because of the dual engines, the petrol or diesel engine is smaller meaning that it isn’t as powerful. So, if you’re more into performance and power than you are eco-friendliness then a hybrid isn’t for you.
- They are not exempt from tax
While hybrids are low in emissions, they are not low enough to be exempt from the likes of the congestion charge, company car tax and road tax.
So there are some of the disadvantages of a hybrid car.
What are the best hybrid cars?
In conclusion, a hybrid car is perfect for those who want a more environmentally friendly car but do not want to pay more for a plugin hybrid nor do they like the idea of having to charge their car up. However, if you do want to go for a car that is the most environmentally friendly, then we would recommend looking at a plugin hybrid or an electric car. There are more choices when it comes to hybrid cars, so if you want more options then a hybrid is perfect for you. Hybrids are also perfect for those doing a high mileage as you don’t have to charge your car up. That said, maintenance does cost more with a hybrid because of the dual engines. They are also not as powerful as conventional combustion engine cars because the fuel engine is smaller.
For more information on hybrid cars, you can head to our learning centre.
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