The conventional gasoline car runs on gasoline engines that power the car. These cars give us speed, easy refueling capability and long distance running between refills. However, these cars also cause harm to our environment and to our wallets.
Hybrid technology is not really new. It was Ferdinand Porsche who
first introduced hybrid technology to the world of automobiles in 1899. Hybrid
technology has existed for years in the form of mopeds that unite the energy of
a gasoline engine and pedal power; locomotives that are diesel-electric
hybrids; mining trucks and diesel-electric buses in Seattle and other cities
which run alternately on diesel and electricity; submarines which are
nuclear-electric combination and a lot more.
With growing concern about pollution and the environment combined with fuel prices hitting all-time highs, hybrid car models began appearing in the market in 1990 with hybrid cars from Honda and Toyota. By 2002, less than 30,000 hybrid cars were sold in the US, and in 2003 there was a big leap with Toyota alone selling about 100,000 hybrid cars. As 2004 rolled in, there was a new vigor among customers for new generation hybrid cars and they were all sold off almost immediately. Automakers are still playing catch-up as they release new models almost as fast as you read this.
How Hybrid Cars Work
The latest offering in hybrid technology is the hybrid car that combines the advantages of the gasoline engine and electric motors. The hybrid cars have a gasoline engine to get it going and an electric motor for speeding up the vehicle. This combination overcomes the limitations of speed of an electric car while gaining in fuel efficiency and improved exhaust that is less harmful to the environment.
Hybrid cars do not necessarily have to be plugged in, yet still deliver superior mileage and performance. They are environmentally-friendly alternatives to traditional internal combustion engine vehicles.
Hybrid Cars with Big Names
Hybrid cars have become so popular they are generally sold out immediately leaving many potential buyers to be put on the waiting list. Toyota and Honda were the most popular when first introduced and today, all the major automobile companies are now offering hybrid cars. Notable examples are the Sierra Pick-up from GM, the Escape SUV from Ford, the Lexus RX 400h Sport Utility, Mercury Mariner Hybrid Sport Utility, Saturn Vue and Chevy Equinox.
Hybrid cars are not just a fashionable trend or a trial product. Hybrid cars have not been manufactured in as big of numbers as expected when they were introduced. However, the benefits of a hybrid car are numerous and more people are becoming aware of them. Hybrid cars are environmenally friendly, fuel efficient and conserves our valuable natural resources. Hybrid cars are generally small, lightweight, fuel efficient and available in a increasing variety of styles.
With oil prices continuing to rise and so many car makers jumping into the market, the future of hybrid cars is no doubt the future of the automobile industry. Latest statistics indicate a steep rise in sales as well as demand for hybrid cars.