By definition, hybrid cars are the combination of gasoline and electric batteries as a power source. Hybrid cars use dual sources simultaneously and at the same time as well. It all depends on the hybrid type, parallel, series, or plug-in hybrid. These determine which power source you can use and how. Cars with hybrid propulsion systems use an electric motor, internal combustion engine, or a combination of both while moving. We shall look at the pros and cons of hybrid cars and see what makes them different from traditional cars.
Types of Hybrid Systems
Series Hybrid: Parallel Hybrid: Plug-In Hybrid
A Series Hybrid car uses the internal combustion engine to charge the electric batteries of the car. It is the electric motor that is directly powering the wheel. BMW I3 is an example of a Series Hybrid. Parallel Hybrid cars use both, the electric motor and internal combustion engine to power the wheel. Toyota Prius is the most common example of a Parallel Hybrid.
Somewhat like a Series Hybrid, Plug-In cars use batteries as the primary source of power. Unlike other hybrids, Plug-In uses much more high-powered batteries with great capacity. Standard power outlets are a good source to charge hybrids. Honda Clarity is one such Plug-In Hybrid. The pros and cons of hybrid cars of each type are different.
The Pros and Cons of Hybrid Cars
Hybrids have been around for quite some time now and while many have loved their dual features, some still have reservations about the use of Hybrid cars. We’ll go over the pros and cons of Hybrids by turn.
The Advantages/Pros of Hybrid Cars:
1. Environmentally Friendly
One of the greatest reasons to switch to hybrids from gasoline-run cars is the reduction in fuel consumption. These run cleaner and give a better gas mileage thus being more environmentally friendly than most traditional cars. The combination of the two power sources reduces the need to use fuel thus helping in conserving energy.
Hybrid cars are being incentivized by governments in various states, owing to their great environmental benefits. There has been a great reduction in taxes and congestion charges. These have drawn more and more people towards buying hybrids. Hybrid owners can save quite a lot from the low fuel costs annually.
3. Great Resale Value
Since hybrid cars have become such a demand in the market as opposed to traditional gasoline-run cars, users are having a good value for resale as well. A hybrid’s value doesn’t get reduced much since after resale and it becomes a little affordable for a second-hand buyer.
4. Regenerative Braking System
Every time a driver hits the break on a hybrid, its batteries charge themselves a little. An internal mechanism attached to the breaks helps in conserving energy. Users don’t have to worry about refueling constantly and can use the conserved energy with the regenerative braking system.
5. Light-weight Body
A lightweight body would mean that the car would need less energy to run. This saves the batteries from being burned down too much. The light build also helps in conversing energy for future use.
The Disadvantages/Cons of Hybrid Cars:
1. High Purchasing Cost
Hybrids usually cost higher than conventional gasoline-run cars, there is a significant price gap between the two. The reduced fuel costs help cover the extra cost in the future and make up for the extra price.
2. Complex Hybrid Technology
With so much machinery to handle, the engine, electric motor, and batteries can be a huge task. For a common man to handle all these together can be quite complex. The costs for maintenance are accordingly twice as much as well. This new technology is still a heft task for quite many people.
3. High Voltage Batteries
The high-powered batteries can be quite a risk in the event of an unfortunate accident. Damage to the batteries, while the driver is in the bounds of the car, can be quite problematic and even lethal.
4. Less Energy/Power
With the power consumption divided between two sources, a hybrid cannot operate as fast and effectively as a gasoline-run car. The division makes both the gasoline power and batteries operate a little slower than if they worked independently.
Hybrids have developed significantly over time and will continue to do so in the future as well. The pros and cons of hybrid cars are at a balance and anyone looking to invest in a hybrid can make a decision best suited to their needs accordingly. One of the best-known facts about hybrids is that their resale value is quite well, so anyone dissatisfied customer can always sell it and replace it with something to their liking. Also, the trends are towards investing in renewable energy stocks so the markets are all in favor of upcoming technologies.