Hybrid Vehicles

Is there a market for Hybrid Vehicles in the United States? The problem is compelling. When gas prices shot up last year averaging about $3.76 a gallon, everyone was looking to save at the pumps. Car makers were selling lots of compact cars. America’s vehicles were getting smaller.

Then the opposite happened. Gas prices started to fall and Americans went back to buying Ford F150’s and powerful full size SUV’s. The car markers and dealerships had the problem of lots of compact vehicles and some Hybrid Vehicles on their lots and no buyers.

So what are the car makers to do? What about consumers? Do we have to guess at what the market will bring? Will there be another “cash for clunker program”?

Well the answer is we have to be savvy buyers. We are going to have to ask ourselves how big of a vehicle do we want? Do we buy compact, subcompact, SUV, hybrid, or even truck?

What we ultimately would like are larger vehicles that uses less fuel. Oh yes, but not at the expense of giving up on power or reliability.

Fortunately technology is addressing this issue and the answer is in Hybrid vehicles and cleaner burning diesel cars and trucks.

What is a hybrid vehicle? Well it is any vehicle that combines two or more sources of power that can directly or indirectly provide propulsion power to act in unison or independently of each other.Wow that’s a mouthful. Basically it can if it would like to, do two things at the same time.

Hybrid vehicles have very sophisticated electric motors and generators that are used to produce electrical power.The electric motor in the units use batteries which are used to draw energy to accelerate the car or truck. But acting as a generator, it can also slow the car down and return energy back to the batteries.

So it can give and take when it is asked to.

The unit has periodic engine shut off – when the car is stopped in traffic, the engine is temporarily shut off. It restarts automatically when put back into gear either by stepping on the accelerator or releasing the clutch.

Hybrid Vehicles utilize things like a sleeker body style. Thinner tires,lighter composites all to reduce the weight and drag to bring better fuel mileage and save energy.

There are really two kinds of gasoline hybrids. The parallel hybrid and the series hybrid.
In a parallel hybrid vehicle, a gasoline engine and an electric motor blend together to move the vehicle. Basically doing two things at the same time.

In a series hybrid the gasoline engine either directly powers an electric motor that powers the vehicle or charges batteries that will power the motor. Basically doing only one thing at a time.

The automobile industry as a whole has a new and vital role in implementing changes as to how it is going to continue to make vehicles. We can see sweeping changes happening each and every year as the EPA keeps forcing the industry to cut emissions. Consumers are always looking for better fuel economy and better performance. Buyers are now starting to “think green” when purchasing vehicles are and stressing for more ways to bring a lighter environmental impact on our fragile world.

The good news is that the automobile industries are developing newer technologies and addressing each and every avenue to bring consumers what the want.

As we continue to move on into the new decade we will start to see things like solar panels built into the top of cars keeping them cool as they are parked. Solar panels in the headlights and taillights will help recharge the hybrid batteries.

The future of the automobile industry as well as the economy will remain a mystery for now. However our technological advances in making superior energy efficient vehicles are mind boggling. As we keep coming up with new ideas and better ways to improve on itself. It is an exciting time to see the changes occurring and we can look forward to seeing marked improvements in all phases of fuel economy and conservation.

Keep “Thinking Green” my friends

Hybrid Vehicle Top Safety Pick

An auto insurance trade group, The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, has named a hybrid vehicle as a top safety pick. The Chevrolet Volt, a plug-in hybrid vehicle with a small gasoline engine, achieved the honor along with the all-electric Nissan Leaf. The Insurance Institute offered the judgment after the group’s first US crash tests of plug-in and pure electric cars. Anyone wondering if hybrid vehicles are going to be safe can rest easy.

The Volt earned its top rating of “good” for front, side, rear and rollover crash protection. The Institute also noted that both the Volt and the Leaf have standard electric stability control which the group considers a crucial safety feature. Makers of hybrid vehicles are clearly using the same standards of safety in the production of these new types of cars as in the more common internal combustion engine vehicles.

Critics have long argued that hybrid vehicles could not be made economically and that safety would be compromised in the rush to “go green,” but the recent crash tests show that this is not the case. These hybrid vehicles are as safe or safer than any car produced today.

Both the Nissan Leaf and the Chevrolet Volt are small cars which initially would seem to indicate a lack of safety. Both, though, have battery packs adding significant weight to the vehicles making them safer than other cars in their class. This, too, was demonstrated by the Institute’s crash tests.

Additionally, the tests proved that using technology to boost fuel economy, such as the electric batteries in both these vehicles, is preferable to simply downsizing and lightening the weight of cars to save fuel. Hybrid vehicles are actually safer than standard cars of the same size while remarkably fuel-efficient at the same time.

These hybrid vehicles are perfect for highway driving. Should a crash occur, these cars will protect the drivers better than the vast majority of standard cars.

In fact, these electric cars are far safer than the low-speed vehicles, such as the GEM e2 or the Wheego Whip, which were judged dangerous after crash tests last year. These are golf-cart-like vehicles which are becoming increasingly popular, but are not required to meet the national safety standards of passenger vehicles.

The image of the electric and hybrid car was damaged in the mind of the consumer by these small carts which were never meant for highway driving. Nevertheless, industry observers think that the new tests will propel the Leaf and the Volt forward in the minds of eco-minded consumers who have been waiting for a chance to purchase a reasonably green, fuel-efficient and safe car for at least five years. The time has finally arrived. Both the Leaf and the Volt are extremely safe, fuel-efficient and will not harm the environment. Auto makers have finally turned the corner on producing desirable hybrid vehicles.

Hybrid Vehicles Have Good Combustion

You’d be interested to know that there are different types of hybrid vehicles available in the market. There are even more different types of hybrid cars being worked upon and they are expected to arrive soon. If you are looking to buy such an automobile, you will have to do a lot of research before you purchase one. Because there are lot of different hybrid automobiles having different technology and the prices are different as well. Following are the different types of hybrid cars available in the market.

Full hybrids – These are arguably the best amongst the hybrid vehicles available in the market right now. These are based on two separate systems of propulsion i.e electric motor and internal combustion engine. Both of these work independently of each other. Under different driving conditions the cars are powered just by electric motor. These cars use regenerative braking; they charge the battery through the energy that would have been lost otherwise.

Mild hybrids – These types of hybrid vehicles were created in order to capitalize on the high demand for such cars. Examine these vehicles closely and you will realize that the mild hybrids are just like other hybrids but they have a turbocharger. That is why these cars are not regarded as hybrid cars by many. In such vehicles, the power train is not connected to the electric motor like the full hybrid. Internal combustion is assisted in electric motor but it is not capable of propelling the car on its own. These cars are not bad but they can mislead the buyer. Manufacturing process is quite inexpensive and is not that complex either. They also give you better gas mileage. An excellent example of such a car is the Chevrolet Malibu hybrid which gives 2 mpg more than the standard counterpart.

Plug-In Hybrids – These types of hybrid vehicles are not out in the market right now but you can see them in the near future. These cars use internal combustion engine as a back up to electric motor. These cars can be plugged in to your standard household electric outlet for charging and they also have the same charging mechanism as the hybrid automobile. Full hybrids use internal and electric combustion engine but the plug in cars use only the internal combustion engine as backup when batteries of electric motors are empty. The car will run as full hybrid at this time. These cars give you better fuel efficiency as compared to other hybrids and many people consider this technology as the future of such cars.

Performance Hybrid – Electric motors have the ability to offer instant torque unlike conventional combustion engine. There are few companies which figured out that you can pair a small gasoline motor with electric motor and get the performance of a larger engine along with better fuel efficiency. Lexus GS450h is an excellent example of such hybrid vehicles; it is capable of achieving a top speed of 0-60 miles in 5.2 seconds. However, it also gives 25mpg city / 28mpg freeway which is not too high compared to the fuel-run vehicles. Get more quality information hybrid vehicles here.