October 10, 2008

Features You may Want for Your Hybrid Car

Hybrid Car Features

Hybrid cars were not created equal. Some produce more power. Some are designed for maximum fuel efficiency. Some are built for city driving; others are made to turn heads. Most have unique features that further improve the quality of driving and fuel economy. When you are shopping for one, take note of the following features.

Regenerative braking system. In conventional gasoline-powered cars, all the kinetic energy (energy in motion) is lost and wasted during braking. Hybrid cars recapture this kinetic energy through the regenerative braking system back to the battery for future use. The regenerative braking system increases fuel economy and reduces wear to the brakes.

Low-rolling resistance tires. Tires are often not seen as a major factor in increasing the fuel economy. But in hybrid cars, they use low-rolling resistance tires to improve gas mileage. These stiffer, narrower, and inflated tires reduce the drag against the ground.

Fuel economy. Not all hybrids are fuel efficient. Some are made to perform. And even if the hybrids are made to get the longest miles out of every gallon of gas, some are still better than others. For example, the . Toyota Camry Hybrid runs 38mpg and it has a 192 horsepower. Ford Escape Hybrid runs 34 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on highway. Toyota Prius runs 48 mpg in the city and 45 mpg on highway. The Honda Civic Hybrid runs 40 mpg in the city and 45 mpg on highway. When choosing what hybrid car to buy, take note of these differences.

Periodic engine shut off. Idling consumes fuel too. So, most hybrid cars automatically turn off its combustion engine temporarily during stops. A hybrid car with this feature is most ideal if you drive in stop-and-go traffic most of the time.

Smaller and more efficient engine. Logically, the car does not actually need a V6 or a V8 in order to run because most of the time, your car only requires 20 hp to move. The extra horsepower is only needed during acceleration. This is the reason why hybrid cars are so efficient. They use smaller engines.

Safety, Comfort, and Space. These are 3 issues that are questionable to hybrid cars. In general, hybrid cars are as safe, as comfortable, and as spacious as their non-hybrid counterpart. But if you are more concerned about not getting these 3 in a hybrid car, you should not have a problem. There are several hybrid cars on the market today that focus on these 3 areas.

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