What is a hybrid car?
A hybrid car, also known as a hybrid electric vehicle (HEV), is a vehicle that relies on two different sources of power - electricity and gasoline. The first mass produced hybrid was the Toyota Prius NHW10, which made its debut in 1997. Although the hybrid car had a slow start, as of 2019 the U.S. is the second biggest consumer of hybrid cars in the world, with more than 5.4 million hybrid cars on the road.
Types of Hybrid Car
When shopping for a hybrid car, it is important to understand what the different types are and how they work. Read more below about the different types of hybrid cars.
A plug-in hybrid car uses a both a battery and gasoline to power a combustion engine. The vehicle will run on electric power until the battery is depleted, then the car will switch over to the gas-powered engine.
What is PHEV?
PHEV is an acronym for plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. The battery is usually bigger than in other hybrid vehicles, and requires the user to “plug-in” the vehicle to an outlet in their garage or public designated EV parking spots.
Self-charging hybrid cars are hybrid cars that you cannot plug-in. The term was coined by Toyota and Lexus, and refers to a car with two electric motors that uses the friction from the brakes as a generator to charge the battery.
These vehicles give you the choice in which power source you want when driving your car. You can choose between using just the engine or just the battery and depending on the make of the car, there are multiple modes to choose how you want to power your car.
Mild hybrid cars are similar to self-charging vehicles. They use regenerative braking to power the battery, but the engine only turns off whenever the car is in cruise control or stopped. It has the ability to restart fairly quickly, but they do not have the electricity-only mode.