The Different Types of Hybrid Cars

Hybrid cars have grown into some of the most popular cars that people use nowadays. Numerous persons purchase them, including celebrities, the wealthy and politicians. These are vehicles that utilize two power sources for moving the vehicle, sometimes more. There are basically four types of hybrid cars.

Parallel Hybrid Cars

The first type is a parallel hybrid car. With this kind of build, the gasoline engine and the electric motor both work together, or in parallel, to power the car forward. Honda developed the Integrated Motor Assist technology, where the electric motor with high torque aids the gasoline engine if the vehicle has an increased load. For instance, the electric motor will help when the car is accelerating rapidly or when it is driving up a steep slope like a hill. As you coast, the electric motor will bow out and the gasoline engine will continue to fully power the vehicle. The Toyota Prius is a parallel hybrid car, though it is also a series parallel car. This is among the most popular hybrid cars. The Honda Insight is the first true parallel hybrid car.

Series Hybrid Cars

The second type of hybrid is a series hybrid car. With this type of car, the electric motor handles all the work of propelling and powering the vehicle. This type also has a gasoline engine. However, the engine’s connection to the drive train is not direct. This means that the engine’s only use is in powering the generator. The only released car that utilizes this type is the Toyota Prius.

Mild Hybrid Configuration Cars

The third type is the mild hybrid configuration. Some debate exists on whether the mild hybrid is actually a hybrid car. Most vehicles within this category utilize the combination of an electric motor and a gasoline engine to propel the vehicle. With other configurations, these two forms of power are delivered to the drive train in varying ways. With a mild hybrid, however, the electric portion does not drive the vehicle in any way; it only helps in lowering the reliance on the gas engine and allowing the engine to start and stop at an increased rate.

Within this configuration, fuel efficiency heightens when the engine turns off as you brake or when the vehicle stops entirely. The electric part acts like a starter motor as it lets the vehicle react rapidly as it accelerates from a complete stop. In addition, the battery, which is recharged through regenerative braking, lowers strain on the engine through powering components like the air conditioning.

General Motors has various models that utilize mild hybrid configuration. They include the Toyota Camry, the BMW 7-Series hybrid, the Honda CR-Z and others.

Split Configuration Hybrid Cars

The fourth type is the split configuration hybrid. This is where the gasoline engine and the electric motor are entirely separated by axel. They each power a different axel. This requires a pair of separate drive trains that bring each power source’s rotation to the wheels. The type of cars underneath this configuration are the Ford Fusion, the Lexus GS450h, the Ford Escape and the Lexus CT200h.

With all these options, you should certainly pick up a hybrid next time you want to buy a car.

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