December 18, 2008

Vehicle Hybridization

Vehicle Hybridization

Anyone can choose to ignore the incessant global warming campaigns. Most of us simply forget that we live on earth which is slowly deteriorating because of our actions. But all of us cannot tolerate the continuing rise in gas prices. Customers today are looking for alternatives to save on fuel costs. Fortunately hybrid vehicles have given us the option to save gas and help the environment. Hybrids are no longer restricted to a conventional 4 door sedan. Hybrid SUVs are also out on the market today to meet the demands of the customers.

Ever since the Toyota Prius came out, other automobile companies have devoted their research in developing their own hybrid technology. Ford and Honda have their own hybrid system incorporated into new models. Hybrid vehicles are expensive for now but development in the future will make them more accessible and affordable for the general public. The technology is still going through development to be able to compete with the fuel dominated automobile industry.

How hybrid are you?

Hybrids have different types. Their structures may differ in some ways but generally they have a rechargeable battery on board or an electric motor that works with an internal combustion engine to move the vehicle. In other vehicles they can operate a rechargeable battery alone but there are many limitations to this type which has prevented it from being widely manufactured. These vehicles are primarily moved by an electric motor and only use the diesel engine for high speeds.

There are different degrees of hybridization. Full or strong hybrids that can run just by using an engine, its batteries are a combination of both. Examples of this are the Toyota Prius and Ford Escape. These two vehicles can move by battery power alone and be assisted by their diesel engines when needed.

Power assist hybrid uses its engine for primary power, coupled with an electric motor to boost torque. The electric motor is connected to a power train and is mounted between the engine and the transmission.

Mild hybrids are conventional vehicles with huge starter motors. This allows the engine to be turned off during idle periods and coasting but still enable the vehicle to start quickly. Most people do not consider this type to be a hybrid but it can still save fuel costs. It's just not as efficient as full hybrids.

Hybrid vehicles are perfect for suburban environments where there is a lot of traffic. If you really look at it the most important is not horsepower but gas mileage.

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