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How to Choose Between Electric Cars & Hybrid Cars

The advent of new technologies in the automobile sector, more and more car manufacturers are investing in designing and manufacturing hybrid and electric vehicles.

  • 07 Nov 2022
  • 5 min read

Times have changed. With the advent of new technologies in the automobile sector, more and more car manufacturers are investing in designing and manufacturing hybrid and electric vehicles. The hybrid or electric car not only reduces the burden of extensively utilizing fossil fuels for mobility but also offers an environment-friendly alternative to petrol and diesel cars. While both hybrid and electric cars are sustainable energy-driven cars, they still have some differences in terms of technology and efficiency. Today, we will focus on electric cars vs. hybrid cars.

What are hybrid cars?

As the name implies, hybrid cars have two engines—petrol as well as diesel. These vehicles are also known as hybrid electric vehicles as they use both, an internal combustion engine (ICE) and at least one electric motor to generate power. This cycle not only saves you money on fuel but also improves the efficiency of your engine. You cannot charge a hybrid car's battery by plugging it into a power source. Instead, you can charge it using the ICE and regenerative braking. A hybrid car's battery can also help in powering the auxiliary load and reducing engine idling. 

Benefits of hybrid cars:

• Cleaner emission:

Compared to the emission levels of ICE vehicles, hybrid cars are less polluting. This is because hybrid cars use both internal combustion engines and electric motors to turn the wheels.

• Fuel efficient:

Since hybrid cars include both internal combustion engines and electric motors, they utilize significantly less fuel than cars that simply have internal combustion engines. The additional power available with them makes them an environmentally-friendly cars. 

• Regenerative braking:

In hybrid cars, you don't need to put your car on halt for battery pack charge. Since the car's electric motor generates electricity whenever you apply the brakes, the battery gets recharged automatically.

Disadvantages of hybrid cars:

• Lower performance:

Since the primary objective of a hybrid car manufacturer is to improve its fuel efficiency, its power and acceleration are much lower than those of standard internal combustion engine vehicles.

• Expensive purchase:

Compared to internal combustion engine cars, hybrid cars are more expensive due to the presence of dual engines and related features. 

• High maintenance cost:

Due to the advanced technology used and the presence of dual engines, the maintenance costs of hybrid cars can dig a hole in your pocket. Also, to get your hybrid car repaired, you need the assistance of a certified mechanic as not all mechanics are trained in or are knowledgeable about hybrid vehicle maintenance. Therefore, it is advised that when you purchase a hybrid car, make sure to secure it with hybrid car insurance.

What are electric cars?

Electric automobiles, often known as electric vehicles or EVs, run on an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine. This makes them pollution-free clean cars. EVs are often devoid of a fuel line, a fuel pump, and a tank. They need plugging into a charging port to draw power from the grid. The electricity in the EV is stored in the rechargeable battery. Interestingly, EVs accelerate faster and are lighter to drive than ICE cars. If you are planning to buy an EV, don't forget to secure it with electric car insurance.

Benefits of electric cars:

• High efficiency:

EVs have far more energy than fuel-powered vehicles. EVs are energy efficient since they convert 62% of their electric energy into the vehicle's power source. However, in ICE cars, the efficiency rate drops to just 21%.

• Zero emissions:

One of the most significant advantages of driving an electric vehicle is that you are helping to protect the environment. With zero tailpipe emissions, EVs are less polluting than ICE cars.

• High performance:

One of the most appealing aspects of driving an electric vehicle is that it produces maximum torque as soon as you press the accelerator pedal. When compared to traditional ICE cars, EVs are also easier to maintain due to fewer moving components.

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Disadvantages of electric cars:

• Less distance:

The distance travelled by an electric car on a single charge can range anywhere between 300 and 400 kilometres, and it will only get shorter as time goes on. ICE cars, on the other hand, have a driving range of 600-700km on a full tank of fuel. Also, with the limited number of charging stations in India, distance is a source of concern for EV drivers.

• Longer refuelling time:

It will take anything from 4-5 hours to fully charge your electric automobile. Even with a fast charger, the battery will take an hour or more to charge. Refuelling a tank of an ICE car, on the other hand, takes only a few minutes.

• Expensive:

Since electric vehicles are relatively new in India, spare parts and other components are still quite expensive compared to traditional fuel vehicles. Therefore, it is advised to get electric vehicle insurance to avoid paying hefty repair and replacement costs stemming from an unforeseen event. 

Electric car vs. hybrid car: Which is better?

To help you determine which is better, a hybrid car or electric car, here are some key distinctions that you must consider: Specifications Electric Cars Hybrid Cars Engine Electric car engines come with electric motors. Hybrid cars have both internal combustion engines (ICE) as well as electric motors. Emission Levels EVs have low emission levels when compared to hybrid and ICE cars. Higher emission levels of gases such as carbon dioxide, sulphur oxide. Fuel Efficiency Fuel efficiency depends on the range of the battery. It comes with a combination of both battery and internal combustion engine (ICE) range. Fuel/Power Source The electricity flowing through a battery pack (DC) power an electric car. Hybrid cars run on either petrol or diesel. Charging Compulsory Not Required Price Range EVs' price range are usually lower than hybrid and ICE cars. Hybrid cars' price range is very much similar to conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) cars.

To Conclude:

In the electric cars vs. hybrid cars debate, you will find that both of them have their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, before making a decision, carefully weigh the benefits and drawbacks so that you don't have to live with regret in the future.

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