For the past 10 to 15 years, hybrid cars have gotten a lot of attention. These are vehicles which operate on both electricity and gasoline. Basically, the hybrid has an electric motor which gets power from an electric generator. The generator is driven by the internal combustion engine that uses gasoline. With all these different sources of power available, the hybrid vehicle can use more electrical power and less gasoline. This means that fewer carbon emissions will go into the environment.
However, there are still some factors which prevent more people from purchasing hybrid cars. In order to determine if a hybrid car is a good purchase to make, you need to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of buying one.
The Top 5 Advantages
Below are the top 5 advantages of owning a hybrid car.
1) Good for the Environment – The whole purchase of a hybrid car is to reduce the amount of carbon emissions that get released into the environment. Since hybrid vehicles use an electric motor and a gasoline engine, this cuts down on the amount of gasoline which gets burned during the operation of the vehicle.
2) Lighter Vehicle – Lightweight materials are used to make hybrid vehicles so that the electrical energy will be sufficient enough to move the vehicle. This means less dependency on the gasoline engine.
3) Financial Incentives – The federal government provides a tax credit to residents of any state that own or lease a hybrid vehicle. There are also some states, like California, which offer cash rebates to any of its residents who purchase or lease a hybrid vehicle. With all these financial incentives, it could greatly reduce the overall cost of your vehicle.
4) Good Resale Value – Gasoline prices are increasing every year. This is causing more people to turn to hybrid vehicles for relief from these gas prices. As a result, people are willing to pay good money for even a used hybrid vehicle in good working condition.
5) Braking Helps Recharge Battery – When you step on the brake pedal in a hybrid vehicle, it will activate a mechanism which gives the battery a little extra recharge. This allows there to be more time before the next manual recharge that you need to perform.
The Top 5 Disadvantages
Below are the top 5 disadvantages of owning a hybrid car.
1) Costlier – Like previously mentioned, the main reason that more people are not switching to hybrid vehicles is due to the cost. The cheapest hybrid vehicle is between $20,000 and $30,000, whereas the cheapest gasoline vehicle is between $10,000 and $18,000. That extra $10,000 will certainly be a deciding factor for many people who are living on a fixed income or tight budget.
2) Not as Powerful – Even though a hybrid vehicle has an electric motor and a single engine to supply its power, this combined energy is not adequate for fast driving. If you are only driving around your city or town then it is okay, but hybrids are not as powerful for regular driving on the highway.
3) Costly Maintenance & Repairs – Hybrid vehicles use a dual engine; one for the electric and one for the gasoline. A lot of mechanics out there may not have the expertise to repair such engines. If you do find qualified mechanics, they are likely going to charge you a lot more money to work on your hybrid vehicle. On top of that, it will be costlier to maintain the vehicle too.
4) Bad Handling – Hybrid car manufacturers are continuously trying to make their vehicles lighter in order to make them more fuel efficient. Since a hybrid needs an electric engine, gasoline engine, and batteries, this adds a lot of weight to the vehicle. So, this has forced manufacturers to make smaller batteries and motors. Meanwhile, the body and suspension do not have as much support as they did before.
5) Electrocution Risk on Accidents – The batteries of hybrid vehicles have a higher amount of voltage in them. If you get into an accident, this voltage could injure or kill you inside the vehicle. It could also make it harder for other people to get you out of the vehicle.