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A Guide to Hybrid and Electric Vehicles



Guide to Hybrid and Electric Vehicles

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With the cost of living and prices soaring, we want to be as budget-minded as possible. If you commute most days of the week, an electrified vehicle might be one to consider. There are many different kinds to choose from including hybrids, plug-in style hybrids, and fully electric cars. Each type has its own characteristics, and selecting one that’s perfect for you is a matter of doing your research and being as informed as you can be.

Before you start to test drive different electrified vehicles, know the basic differences between them so you can make the best decision that will fit your current and future lifestyle needs. For those that are just getting started in the world of electrified cars, here is a beginner’s guide to hybrid and electric vehicles.

What is a Hybrid Vehicle?

Hybrid cars are a cross between a traditional gas-powered car and an electric car. Hybrid vehicles use an electric motor with a gas-powered engine in tandem to power the car. This makes the vehicle extremely energy-efficient and has a longer driving range than the standard gas-powered car. There is no need to plug in a hybrid vehicle as the engine is what produces the power. The electric motor allows the gas engine to turn off when coasting or at low speeds, thus saving on fuel. Hybrids also have regenerative braking to recapture energy and use that energy to charge the car’s battery. Hybrid vehicles have been available for purchase for more than 20 years, making hybrids a safe and dependable option. There are also plug-in hybrid options available which allows the vehicle to be powered by electric-only when going short distances and thus saves the gas for longer distances.

What is a Fully Electric Vehicle?

Fully electric vehicles (or EV for short) don’t rely on any gasoline to power the car. They have larger batteries but no internal combustion engine or a transmission since there’s no gas. There is also no tailpipe because they are a zero emission option. In terms of performance, most electric vehicles also have good acceleration because it’s instant power when you tap the motor with the pedal. Electric vehicles also have very long driving ranges so they are great for people who commute often or need to go long distances.

Benefits of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles

Both hybrid and electric vehicles have great driving ranges versus their gasoline-powered counterparts. Fully electric vehicles and some hybrid options can also qualify for federal, state, or local tax credit and rebate incentives. Depending on if you need to plug in your car, you can do so at home, at work, or any other public charging station. There are many states that allow single drivers of electrified cars to be in the carpool lane to help save you time on your commute. Electrified cars in general also hold their value longer than gasoline-powered vehicles should you decide to sell it later on.

Maintenance of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles

Both hybrid and electric vehicles have less long-term maintenance because they have fewer moving parts compared to gasoline-powered vehicles that have internal combustion and other moving parts that will wear over time. Fully electric vehicles have the least amount of internal moving parts and are a great option for those looking for the least amount of possible future maintenance.

Which Option is Better for the Environment?

Both hybrid and electric vehicles are better choices for the environment over gasoline-powered cars. Because hybrids still use a little bit of gasoline and still have internal combustion, they will emit some gasses. Fully electric vehicles don’t emit any exhaust and don’t even have a tailpipe, so if you’re looking for a zero emissions option then fully electric is the way to go.

How to Choose Between a Hybrid Versus Electric Vehicle

Look through a dedicated and detailed electrified vehicle buying guide to further research hybrid and electric cars so that you can make the most informed decision possible for your next car purchase. Also, consider the upfront cost and what your budget will allow at the time of purchase, since hybrid and electric vehicles tend to have higher upfront cost compared to gasoline-powered cars, but the fuel cost is decreased in the long run.

There are many considerations that need to be taken into account when choosing between a hybrid or fully electric vehicle. Both are great options but one might fit your current and future lifestyle better, so it’s important to do your research before making your decision. Either way, you can’t go wrong with an electrified vehicle.

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