Hybrid cars are not just here to stay, but they’re here to conquer. It won’t be fully electric cars that will kill off the engine-only cars, it will be their not so distant cousins. Hybrids have the best of both worlds because they use electric motors for short sharp early acceleration and then switch the engine on for prolonged travel such as on motorways. They are inherently better at fuel efficiency because the engine doesn’t have to be on and working all the time to make the car move. The only drawback is that the battery will need to be recharged pretty much daily if you’re going to treat it as your normal everyday car. That’s usually okay because you can always rely on your combustion engine to do the work if you’re all out of juice. But is a hybrid car really worth it? They seem to be in purgatory, not really being the best at long distance or short distance travel.
Back in style
The Smart brand was launched at the turn of the millenium. It was seen as some kind of small agile, but a futuristic car. It was designed to be small, fit only two people and be the perfect city car. The brand might have gone into the background of the car industry for a while but since then it has made a comeback. With the new smart fortwo, there is a new small hybrid in town. It weighs under 1 ton, at around 880kg making it an incredibly lightweight car. It has a reasonably large 66 kWh electric motor, with an option of either a 0.9 or 1.0-liter engine. The small of the two options is fitted with a turbocharger. Not one of the models you can buy will be achieving under 61 mpg which is phenomenal for anyone that lives in a city. With the small wheelbase and good build-quality all around, this is a great car to drive around highly congested areas.
For the B-road
Living out in the countryside, one needs to be aware of the kind of car you need. Bear in mind you will be someone who probably commutes to work and also has a family. The longer wheelbase some cars offer, gives your more stability to spread the weight around evenly but also, maintain more grip is wet and muddy conditions. Therefore a hybrid estate cars like the Toyota Auris is something you should pay attention to. It comes with a 1.8-liter engine but also an electric motor. It weighs just under 1.5 tons which is pretty good for a large car. It has around 132 bhp with around 105 lbs of torque. However, with the combined figures you get around 70 mpg which is even better than the small car. You suffer with less manoeuvrability but if you live out beyond the city, this shouldn’t be a big problem for you.
Hybrids are taking over the car world, not just in terms of performance cars but everyday vehicles too. Now you have viable choices for both the city and where the roads are long twisty and muddy.