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Hybrid VS. Conventional Cars

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On: Tue, Aug 30, 2011 at 1:52PM | By: Peter C Sessler

Hybrid VS. Conventional Cars

Hybrid cars have definitely made a dent in the sales of new cars. More and more people are evaluating whether they should buy one or at least, look at one before they buy. The reason is obvious. With gasoline prices rising this year, conventional cars are really starting to become too expensive, especially trucks and SUVs. You can save money with a hybrid car, but you have to be careful.

Hybrid cars stand out because they get much better mileage. Compared to a regular car, you can save substantially in fuel costs with a hybrid. For example, the Toyota Prius, the best-selling hybrid car, has an estimated 51/48 mpg. Compare that with the highest mpg from a regular car and you’ll see that the Prius is ahead. What about cost? Yes, you may pay extra for your hybrid up front, but you can recoup the gap in gasoline savings later. The hybrid can put you into the plus when compared to a conventional car when you reach the break-even point on the fuel cost.

Let’s look at technology. Hybrid engines use two engines – the regular gas engine operates on gasoline, but the second motor is electric. The car automatically switches to electric power as soon as it is not moving, but the engine is still running. Once you put pressure on the accelerator pedal, the gas engine resumes working. So when regular use is called for, the gasoline engine in a hybrid is smaller, thereby using less gas, and when they are switched over to the electric motor, they use no gas! In addition, hybrid vehicles run more efficiently as a result of aerodynamic design and are constructed of lighter materials as well.

There are other benefits that are part of the hybrid car. By using the two power sources, the hybrid car makes less pollution than conventional cars. Hybrid cars also run more quietly due to the smaller gas engine; and the electric motor is much quieter under use.

As opposed to an electric car, the hybrid car does not need to be plugged in order to recharge the battery; the car battery actually recharges even though the car is running. Still, the battery can be a problem for the prospective owner.

After of about 100,000 of use, the Toyota Prius, for example, will require the owner to buy a new battery, costing about $4,000.00! This can be very debilitating. In addition to all the typical maintenance required to 100,000 miles, the Toyota Prius owner has to worry about the electric motor and associated running gear. This can be expensive.

Yes, the typical hybrid car will save the prospective owner in fuel costs, but on the other hand, the added battery costs should also be taken into account.


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