What You Need to Know Before Buying a Hybrid Car


Jul 18th, 2020

What You Need to Know Before Buying a Hybrid Car

Hybrid cars are a joy to have. If you drive a lot, the extra cash you can save up from buying less fuel can make a "Brobdingnagian" difference in your budget. Don't mind me, I just found that word today, and I've been dying to share and use it. It means enormous. Anyway, since you're here, it’s safe to say you're considering buying a hybrid car. Let's help you make a more informed decision as we go over some major questions about hybrid vehicles.

What is a hybrid car?

As the word "hybrid" suggests— something formed from two or more things— it is an automobile that runs on both gasoline and electricity-powered engines. Hybrid cars use both an electric motor and a gasoline engine to make the car move although they are as easily driven as regular cars.

Most automobile makers in the world now offer some form of a hybrid car ranging from the likes of the Toyota Prius to minivans like the Honda Odyssey and even pickup trucks like Ram 1500. Some hybrid auto car parts are distinct to their type while some are pretty much the same as the auto parts for their strictly gasoline-powered counterparts.

Are there different kinds of hybrid cars?

Yes, there are four different types of hybrid cars as of today, and they are:

1. Parallel Hybrid Cars

These are the basic hybrid cars and the most common type of hybrid vehicle around. This kind has its electric motor running simultaneously with the gasoline engine to propel it. An example of a parallel hybrid vehicle is the Toyota Prius. Its electric motor and gasoline engine work together - and work individually in some situations - to power the wheels. 

2. Micro-Hybrid Car

Micro-hybrid cars fall between the full hybrids and electric vehicles, but they are less fuel-efficient than full hybrids. Their batteries only serve as an extra boost to the gasoline engine. An example is the newest model of the Mercedes-Benz GLE.

3. Plug-in Hybrid Car

You could say these varieties are more electric than they are gasoline. For one thing, they need to be plugged-in to charge their batteries. On short drives, the car is powered by the batteries, while on long stretches, the gasoline engine takes over. The 2019 Kia Niro is a perfect example of a plug-in hybrid.

4. Range-Extended Hybrids

These are hybrids where the gasoline engine recharges the battery for the electric motor to run. The motor powers the wheel, and the gasoline engine recharges the battery to keep the car moving. These hybrids need to be charged to function and only require the gasoline engine to recharge the battery while at work. An example is the BMW i3.

Are hybrids truly safe for the environment? 

If you genuinely want to save the Earth, then become a superhero.

It's actually a Yes and a No kind-of-thing. Here's what hybrids do. They emit "less" CO2 and all other greenhouse gases that cause global warming and health problems. Thanks in large part to their electric motor, hybrids produce comparatively lesser emission. However, since they still run partially on a gasoline engine, they do have some impact on the environment. 

More so, hybrid batteries contain materials like lithium and cobalt. The mining process of these materials is extremely destructive to the planet. So that's another challenge there. In fact, a small, used diesel car would be a more feasible option if what you wanted was to make the least impact on the environment. That's the bottom line.

Are hybrid cars long-lasting?

Proper maintenance is key to maximising the life span of any automobile, and hybrid cars are no exception. If well maintained, they can be as long-lasting as regular cars. Also, most hybrid vehicles are sold with warranties that cover some of their major car parts like the electric motor and sometimes, batteries. Please note, however, that replacing an EV battery without a warranty can be ridiculously expensive. 

Another important point is that a hybrid car's maintenance cost does not significantly differ from the maintenance cost of a regular car.

What are the pros and cons of hybrid vehicles?

Let’s start with the cons of hybrid cars first. 

1. Hybrid cars are substantially more expensive than their gasoline-engine twin of the same model.

2. At some point, you will have to replace its battery, which can be quite expensive. If you’re getting a replacement battery without a warranty in place, you would be paying around $4,400 for it, give or take a hundred. 

3. Some maintenance services can be way expensive on hybrid cars compared to a regular gasoline car.

4. Replacement hybrid parts can be difficult to come by and expensive compared to regular cars.

Now, here are the PROS of hybrid vehicles.

1. Of course, enhanced fuel efficiency. 

2. They accelerate very quickly from a stop, due to the torque power of electric motors.

3. Like regular cars, they are easy to drive.

4. There is less anxiety about how far you can go, unlike electric vehicles that have to be plugged in and gasoline engine cars that need to be filled up with gas. This is assuming you do not own the plug-in variety. 

Hopefully, with these questions answered and taken into consideration your own needs, you can finally make up your mind on whether a hybrid car is perfect for your needs.

If you have already decided to own one, always keep in mind that maintenance is the key to a longer lifespan, pretty much the same principle with regular cars. Get replacement hybrid car parts only from reliable sellers, such as those you find via Carpart.com.au. For convenient shopping, you may request auto parts through us and we will connect you to our certified sellers. 

By Damilare Olasinde