In terms of how you use it, a self-charging hybrid car works just like a conventional car – there is no need to plug in – simply fill up with petrol at the pumps, and off you go! So what does hybrid mean? It’s pretty simple, along with a petrol or diesel engine, hybrid cars also have an electric motor that is powered by a small battery. The aim of the electric motor is to assist the engine and occasionally drive very short distances on battery power – as opposed to driving long distances on battery power alone as a plug-in hybrid or a battery-electric vehicle would.
The battery is charged by recovering energy that would otherwise be wasted – when slowing down for example. The battery then feeds this energy to the electric motor to help with acceleration or to drive the car at low speeds. This means lower emissions, better fuel economy and more money to spend on the things you enjoy. Great!
What are the benefits of a self-charging hybrid car?
There are several benefits to owning a self-charging hybrid car.
Because the electric motor can assist with acceleration, there is less strain on the engine. This results in lower emissions. The electric motor can also take over at low speeds – in stop-start traffic in town centres for example. That means the engine doesn’t have to be running for as long, which results in cleaner air for everybody.
Reduced running cost
Using less fuel is not only good for the environment, it’s also good for your finances! Improved fuel economy means less money spent on fuel, and less time wasted at the pumps. The lower emissions also mean a reduced VED rate and lower BIK tax.
Doesn’t require you to make any changes
If you aren’t quite ready to switch to a plug-in vehicle, or don’t have the option of a home charge point, hybrid cars might be the solution you’re looking for. A hybrid car doesn’t require you to do anything different than you would do in a conventional car. The car’s clever electronics take care of how the energy is recovered and used. All you have to worry about is keeping it topped up with petrol.
The assistance from the electric motor means the engine doesn’t have to work as hard and that makes for a quieter journey. The added torque also means effortless acceleration for a more relaxing driving experience.
What is it like to drive a self-charging hybrid car?
Very similar to driving a conventional car, but with a few bonuses. The best part is that the car’s clever systems decide how to use the battery and electric motor in the most efficient way possible. You just need to drive as you normally would, while enjoying improved fuel economy and lower emissions.
If you want to have more of a say, you can change driving modes to encourage the car to focus on economy, or if you want a more dynamic drive, you can switch Sport mode. You will also notice that the car is quieter, particularly around town, thanks to the assistance from the electric motor.