Should you buy an electric vehicle or a hybrid model? When searching for alternative-fuel vehicles, this could be an important question to answer.
Hybrid vehicles have a small electric motor and smaller battery pack to aid the internal combustion engine and make the vehicle much more efficient. Traditional hybrids use both the electric system and gas engine at all times while plug-in hybrids offer short driving ranges using only electricity.
Electric vehicles only use electricity sent from a large battery pack to the electric motor. Some models have multiple motors. These motors are attached directly to the axles, opening up the space where a gas engine used to reside.
EVs Have Fewer Moving Parts
Hybrid and PHEV models actually have more moving parts than traditional gas-powered vehicles. The addition of the hybrid system means more moving parts, requiring more maintenance and more frequent visits to the service station.
Conversely, EVs have no ignition, pistons, or cylinders, which means fewer moving parts and less maintenance requirements. This means maintenance costs should be much less in EVs than in hybrid vehicles. Both types of vehicles utilize regenerative braking, which means the regular brakes should last much longer than in traditional gas and diesel-powered vehicles.
Are Hybrid Cars More Affordable Than EVs?
The latest Federal EV Tax Credit applies to PHEVs and EVs, but not as much for traditional hybrid cars. Currently, electric vehicles are much more expensive than traditional vehicles with hybrids and PHEVs fitting between these two classes. This means you’ll spend less buying a hybrid or PHEV than an EV. If the purchase price is one of the deciding factors, you’ll want to turn to a hybrid, preferably a plug-in model that comes with the $7,500 Federal EV Tax Credit. As electric vehicles become more common, these vehicles should become more affordable.
Driving Range; Hybrids Offer a Serious Advantage
Here’s where things get a little more interesting. Whether you drive a traditional hybrid or plug-in hybrid, you have a gas tank and an internal combustion engine. This means you’re not limited by the driving range because it doesn’t take long to refuel at a gas station. Electric vehicles fast a different challenge. Although some EVs have more than 300 miles of driving range and can recharge to 80% in less than one hour, the time it takes to travel and recharge can be challenging on a road trip.
Fuel Costs; A Huge Advantage for EVs
Flip the coin from driving range to fuel costs and you’ll find a huge difference. Hybrid vehicles use gas and electricity while EVs only use electricity. Driving a hybrid means you’ve got to pay the price per gallon of gas, which is much higher than what you’ll pay at public charging stations for electricity. Typically, EV owners can save more than $1,000 per year compared to the gas used by hybrid cars. Another feather for the EVs is the fact that most EVs are now recharged overnight at home, which is the only way to bring the lithium-ion batteries to a full charge, and its extremely convenient for EV owners.
The Silence of Electricity Is New and Fun
When comparing PHEVs to regular EVs, both can drive silently while using only electricity for fuel. Once the PHEV begins to use gasoline, the noise increases, coming out of the gas engine. AN EV is a silent driver at all times, offering a much quieter ride with less noise entering the cabin while out on the road. Regular hybrid cars are slightly quieter than small, traditional vehicles, but not as quiet as PHEVs or EVs.
Which Vehicle Makes the Most Sense?
Traditional hybrid vehicles are more affordable than PHEVs and EVs, have much better fuel economy numbers compared to traditional gas-powered cars, and are more useful during road trips because they can be refueled with gasoline.
Plug-in hybrid vehicles come at a higher cost than traditional hybrids but offer full EV driving range when the batteries are charged. PHEVs are more efficient than hybrids and traditional cars while being better to drive on road trips than EVs because PHEVs have a gas-powered engine. PHEVs also qualify for the Federal EV Tax Credit.
Electric vehicles have no gas engine and cost more than both types of hybrid vehicles. Over the lifespan of an EV, the fuel and maintenance costs could offset the higher price. Most EVs qualify for the Federal EV Tax Credit, further reducing the cost. EVs must recharge at designated locations, which takes much longer than refilling a gas tank in a hybrid or PHEV.
Will you drive a hybrid, PHEV, or EV?
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