Hybrids: Go Green

March 6th, 2018 by

hybrid vehicle

Hybrids: go green

What is a hybrid vehicle? You may have heard an electric vehicle referred to as a hybrid, but in fact they are two completely different machines. Although they have their differences, they have helped revolutionize the automotive industry to where it stands today. Manufacturers across the world have created their own versions of hybrids and electric cars where some have crashed and burned, while others have excelled to world-wide top-sellers. Both machines have come along way since they first surfaced and are becoming increasingly more common.

highway road with traffic

first shock

So when did hybrids first surface here in the United States? Hybrids made their way onto U.S. highways nearly two decades ago in 1999. Hybrids have become more reliable and affordable for daily use. In nearly 20 years, hybrids span across a number of auto markets including compact cars, SUVs, trucks, and even commercial vehicles. Hybrids are certainly a step in the right direction towards a cleaner commute.

electrical vehicle major components diagram

4 simple components

There are a variety of different hybrids but those used in consumer vehicles are rather simple. There are 4 main components of a hybrid vehicle. Those components include a gas motor, electric motor, battery pack, and regenerative brakes. They work together to ensure the vehicle is operating at maximum efficiency.

black image with full gas tank guage

efficiency is key

The hybrid first starts with the electric motor. The electric motor is used to accelerate the vehicle up to cruising speed. Once the vehicle has reached its target speed, the gas motor then kicks in, and the electric motor is disabled. This allows for less gasoline consumption by the gas motor because the most fuel is consumed during acceleration. The electric motor will only start itself if there is enough energy stored in the battery pack.

2016 black Chevrolet Volt on cobblestone road

how does it work?

So if there is a battery, how is it charged? Hybrid vehicles use a technology known as regenerative braking. The system harnesses the energy generated by braking. The momentum is absorbed, turned into electricity, and stored in the battery pack. Gasoline powered vehicles do not utilize this energy and in turn gets wasted. Lastly, hybrids use a system known as stop-start. This system really helps with fuel efficiency in the way that when the vehicle comes to a stop the gas motor is disabled and the electric motor in enabled. This significantly cuts down wasting fuel on idle. A great example of a hybrid is the 2018 Chevrolet Volt. Even though the car’s main focus is efficiency, style was not spared when creating this gas sipping Chevrolet.

2016 black Chevrolet Volt on cobblestone road

Its Electric

Yeah hybrids are cool but what if you want to go fully electric? Zero emissions, fully electric, and super quiet seems like the way to go in 2018. Take the 2018 Chevrolet Bolt for example. 100% electric, one of the top fully electric vehicles on the market, and a range of 238 miles on a single charge. With all of these upsides you would imagine it couldn’t get any better, but it does. It is also one of the cheapest EVs on the market. We even just received the highly anticipated 2018 Chevrolet Bolt Premier if you really want to ride in style. If any of this peaks your interest check out either one our two Chevrolet dealerships in Massachusetts or New Hampshire for more details.

Posted in Car Buying Tips