Hybrids are relatively new types of cars that are more fuel-efficient than traditional cars that rely completely on petrol. They use a combination of an electric motor and an engine powered by petrol. These types of cars are typically better for the environment because they consume less fuel, thereby preserving a natural resource and also cutting down on air pollution. There are different types of hybrid systems, but the most popular is the gas-electric. The mild hybrid is a type of gas-electric hybrid.
Degrees of Hybrids
The most common gas-electric hybrid is the full hybrid. These kinds of cars usually have a 30- to 70-kilowatt electric motor that runs along with a petrol engine. Usually the motor will be running any time the car is on, and it will rely on a big battery for power. The Prius and the Ford Escape are both examples of full hybrid vehicles. There are a few different variations that fall in between the full hybrid and the mild hybrid.
Mild Hybrid Systems
Mild hybrids are also gas-electric automobiles, but they don't employ as much electric power as full hybrids do. The electric motor in a mild hybrid is meant to act as a backup power source, but it isn't able to power the car for long distances on its own. The car still relies on the petrol engine to do most of the work, with the electric motor chipping in only some of the time.
Benefits of a Mild Hybrid System
Mild hybrid systems save fuel because the car shuts off the gas engine when the car is stopped, braking or running on cruise control. They also allow the car to start more efficiently than traditionally-powered cars that use spark plugs to ignite the engine and turn the car on. The electric motor helps with ignition, and less petrol is used as a result. Certain mild hybrids also allow the car to retain energy while braking.
Full hybrids have better fuel-efficiency, but drivers will still save money on petrol with a mild hybrid. In fact, they can improve fuel efficiency as much as 10 to 15 percent. Mild hybrids also tend to be less expensive than full hybrids.
Types of Mild Hybrids
Automobile manufacturers such as BMW, Chevy, GM, Lexus and Honda have all produced mild hybrids, and these autos are continuing to grow in popularity. The Parallel Hybrid Truck from General Motors uses a 36- to 48-volt system to help the car start, which greatly increases fuel efficiency. It also uses regenerative braking to help power the battery while driving. Similarly, the Honda Insight's motor provides its engine with power during acceleration and offers regenerative coasting and braking.