In the late 1980s electric cars outsold gasoline cars 10 to 1 and continued its dominance till 1910 when production of gasoline powered cars was achieved with the motorized assembly line. By the end of World War I, production of electric cars stopped and became niche vehicles – serving as taxis, trucks, delivery vans, and freight handlers. In the late 1960s and early 70s concerns about air pollution and the OPEC oil embargo prompted revival of the electric car.
As the electric car has a lot of draw backs, the hybrid-electric car evolved. A purely electric car is difficult to maintain. It needs to be charged constantly, and does not travel very far. On the other hand gasoline-powered cars are not only costly on fuel, but also bad for the environment. The hybrid-electric car finds a happy middle ground between these two.
Why should I be aware of this?
Hybrid electric cars offer the best of both worlds: the efficiency and environmental benefits of electric motors, combined with the power and range of internal combustion engines.
Electric cars and environment
Electric hybrid cars are good for the environment. They can reduce smog and use far less gasoline than conventional cars. Even small savings on fuel adds up to a big difference over the life of the car. They are more effective in large cities since they produce very little emissions during low speed city driving and the inevitable traffic jams.
All about electric cars
Electric cars come in two major types: One has an electric motor and some type of battery or generator for energy. The other type is a hybrid car.
Hybrid-electric cars, on the other hand, are the eco-friendly and can offer up to 100 miles of driving time per gallon of fuel.
There are various types of hybrid engines ranging from internal combustion mixed in with a compressed air actuator to battery-packs combined with fuel cells. Hybrid-electric vehicles(HEVs) are cars built with internal combustion engines combined with an electric motor.
Controlling fuel and speed
By controlling the amount of fuel to the electric motor, the speed of the car can be controlled with a pedal, just like in a gasoline-powered vehicle. The controller reads the amount of pressure applied on the pedal and translates that into an amount of electricity.
By combining the functionality of traditional internal combustion engines with a battery-powered electric motor, these cars take some of the work off the combustion engine's hands. This allows the cars similar performance to a comparable conventional car with a much smaller gasoline engine, and an overall increase in fuel efficiency.
No charging of batteries
And above all, these hybrid- electric cars do not need to be plugged in to charge up the batteries.
Within a hybrid-electric car also gasoline is required to power the vehicle. The hybrid vehicle, however converts waste energy into electricity for storage in the hybrid vehicle's battery, thereby saving considerable amount of energy. This excess energy, once converted to electricity, is only used when the hybrid vehicle's electric system is powered.
Today’s hybrid vehicle electric battery source no longer requires charging and is self charged through conversion of the waste energy obtained from the combustible engine.
- The first known hybrid gas-electric prototypes were produced in 1900. In 1905 American engineer H. Piper filed the first patent for a gas-electric hybrid vehicle.
Fuel-cell technology will replace hybrid cars soon
Some people are postponing their decisions to buy an electric- hybrid car in the expectation that fuel cell cars will roll off the assembly lines in the next year or two. There is no doubt that hydrogen fuel cell technology is far superior to hybrid technology, but it is still not clear how long it will take such cars to hit the road. Is it worth the wait?
- Why should I buy an electric car
- Hybrid car motoring guide