Tag: hybrid cars

Honda Accord Returns Great Range without Compromising Comfort

2018-honda-accord-hybrid-reviewThousands of hybrid cars have been tested over the years. A notable aspect is that a majority of purchasers keep returning to specific ones. Most consumers often prefer a mid-sized hybrid sedan because of their efficiency. With such cars, one can carry their family, as well as their luggage and still manage to return around 35-45 mpg on daily driving. The newest version of Honda, the Accord hybrid car is one such vehicle that purchasers keep going back to. This generation hybrid car happens to be the most powerful in its category. At the bottom part of the hood, there is an Earth Dreams engine with a capacity of 2 liters. This engine is connected to an electric transmission cable, as well as lithium ion batteries. This gives a good combination for a total output of more than 200 horsepower. It also enables the hybrid car to easily sprint using highway speeds.

Although the motors tend to be quite noisy at high speeds, this sedan is capable of pepping up when there is the need to do so. It has a sport mode that exaggerates the electric parts of the motors to allow a more responsive experience. The exterior design is fully Accord, as well as unmistakably Honda. At the front grill, there is a chrome-coated badge, daytime running lights and LED headlamps. When darkness falls, the hybrid’s exterior headlights glow in a clear white light generated from the LEDs. These lights are neither the normal projector beam lights nor diffused reflectors. Instead, they are amazing full LED housings. The tail lamps around the back also have LED treatment to complete the look.

The interior part of the Accord is the same as that of the standard models, except for the hybrid details present on the dash. There are two monitor systems, which are not a problem to most drivers. However, for a few drivers, the double monitors are a bother because they prefer a clean and streamlined look of a single monitor. The car’s touch screens are well responsive to touch commands with the remaining part of the dashboard being pleasant to the eyes. The color and font of text is not only attractive, but also visible from a distance. The hybrid has both Android and Apple smartphone connectivity. The comfort of front seat is top-notch, while the rear seats are also spacious, giving adequate space for passenger’s legs. The car can still accommodate two adults comfortably even with its two child seats. Finally, the hybrid is efficient and very subtle on road.

Leave a Comment February 11, 2017

A Glance at the Nissan Note E-Power Hybrid Car

Image via autoevolution

Image via autoevolution

This year marks 20 years since the first hybrid car entered the US market with the Toyota Prius. It is thus, an appropriate time to get a rethink of the original technology that would move us in a cleaner direction. The e-Power version of the Nissan Note fits the bill. This car is neither a pure electric nor a hybrid car. It is in between the two types of vehicles. It is not a kind of hybrid car that has ever been produced in the past. The industry refers to the e-Power as a series hybrid, implying that it can be used for all purposes and intents. The car falls into the electric category because it operates via an electric motor. This motor is responsible for driving the front wheels.

The car also has a three-cylinder, gasoline engine with a capacity of 1.2 liters that serves the role of generating battery charge. The engine does not play any part in driving the wheels, a concept that is entirely new. A comparison between the e-Power and the Nissan Leaf electric car will reveal the uniqueness of this powertrain. The electric motor or e-Power has 40kW, whose potency is half that of Leaf’s. The battery pack of e-Power is a twentieth the Leaf’s size, in a vehicle tipping the scales at 1220 kgs, 109 hp and a torque of 254 Nm are produced. According to Nissan, the vehicle is capable of achieving 80 mpg. Contrary to comparable cars such as BMW i3, Nissan e-Power lacks a plug-in facility.

The model has been tested on the roads surrounding Nissan’s world headquarters and the results are exemplary. Once the starter button is pressed, no sound is produced, just like a typical electric car. Similar to the Leaf, Nissan e-Power provides smooth and instant acceleration. With the engine, motor, and inverter located at the lower side of the chassis, the e-Power experiences minimal body roll, especially in the corners. It has great stability even at highway speeds. Just like the Nissan Leaf, the e-Power’s steering is precise and well-weighted, with a minimal understeer. The working of regenerative brakes is effortless as they play the role of charging the batteries when decelerating. The brake pedal is progressively firm and rigid. Another feature concerning the e-Power is that it is capable of being driven using a single pedal. In D or normal modes, the regenerative brakes of e-Power run almost similarly to a normal gasoline vehicle’s brake feel. According to a commentator, ten years from now, every new vehicle will somehow be electrified.

Leave a Comment February 11, 2017

Toyota Starts a New Electric-Vehicle Project

Toyota Prius

Toyota Prius

Toyota Motor Corporation is trying to follow the footsteps of Tesla Motors, Nissan Motor and General Motors in the development of electric cars. Toyota is well-known for the production of hybrid cars that utilize traditional engines, and it has been skeptical of delving into the fully electric car market. Instead, it has been investing in researching on hydrogen fuel-cells. The automaker’s president, Akio Toyoda, who was in charge of branding the luxury division of Lexus, will oversee the newly set-up electric car Department of Business, planning alongside other executives. The push for electric cars follows Toyota’s president’s move to increase autonomous car research.

A one million dollar investment has been made on the project with several employees hired in Silicon Valley. Toyota, which is the largest car maker globally in terms of profit and sales, has substantial financial resources to utilize in future projects. Meanwhile, Volkswagen AG, its primary competitor has settlement costs and fines amounting to billions of dollars in relation to cheating on emissions tests in the United States. Mr. Toyoda, who is the grandson of the automaker’s founder, has plans of manufacturing cars that can drive themselves by the year 2020. However, Toyota has a likelihood of engineering vehicles that require driver engagement in the operation process.

While the pioneering work of Google on autonomous cars has resulted in a great investment in driverless-car research, electric-car research is also making progress. It is essential for automakers to react to the current regulatory and emission pressures that are overshadowing the lack of demand for battery cars such as BMW i3 and Nissan Leaf. Although Toyota has been focusing more on fuel cells, the automaker seemed to be interested in joining the electric car market many years ago. Toyota started by investing in Tesla in 2010 before launching the Model S electric car sedan. Toyota made an agreement with Tesla to purchase batteries from Tesla, a deal which ended following disagreements between Toyota and Elon Musk.

Toyota still has plans of selling thirty thousand fuel-celled cars per year by 2020, which will coincide with Tokyo’s Summer Olympics. But there are some challenges currently faced. For instance, there have been delays in constructing hydrogen refueling stations, especially in California. This has hampered the sales of Mirai’s fuel-cell car. Recently, Toyota announced that it had plans of setting up a unit for building a battery-powered vehicle that will be marketed quickly. This move has come at a time when the Prius hybrid car sales have been declining in the United States.

 

Leave a Comment December 9, 2016

New Hybrid and Electric Vehicles on the Way

20160317_hyundai_ioniq_2Although the prices of gas are low, car manufacturers are still introducing new hybrid and electric vehicles. The interest in fuel efficient and alternative energy cars is high. Automakers such as Volkswagen, Hyundai, Toyota, and Tesla have intensified the development of cars that pollute less and utilize less fossil fuel. Fuel efficiency is one of the topmost factors that most buyers consider. Prices are going down while at the same time practicality is increasing. Most people were shocked when Chevrolet released its Bolt electric car with a range of 238 miles for $37,495. Chrysler also plans to reveal its Pacifica minivan that has promised a range of 30 miles when driving without gasoline. Other alt-fuel, hybrid and electric cars about to enter the market are highlighted below.

Chevrolet Bolt

Experts have predicted that this new Chevy model will be in high demand and could outshine the upcoming Tesla model. It has a lithium-ion battery that is expected to deliver an EPA range rating of 238 miles. Although the Bolt is a small hatchback, its cargo and passenger space is surprisingly more than enough. The starting price after incentives is less than $30,000.

Acura NSX

This is an eco-friendly super car with a wheel drive system that is synchronized to a V6 gasoline engine. The engine is linked to three electric motors that play the role of turning different wheels. This model takes about 4.4 seconds to jump from 0 to 60 mph. Its combined highway and city driving is 21 mpg.

Kia Niro

Although the Niro looks like a sports utility car, it will only have a front-wheel drive. Its drivetrain has a 1.6 litre engine that gives 146 horsepower in total. There is also an electric motor that is connected to a dual-clutch transmission of six-speeds. The sales will start in 2017.

Hyundai Ioniq

Hyundai will introduce a group of compact hatchbacks, which is highly likely to challenge the status of Toyota Prius. The Hyundai powertrain lineup is set to feature a plug-in hybrid, fully-electric model, and a hybrid car. Official figures of the fuel economy, range and price will be released closer to the date when the dealers will receive the Ioniq. Sales of the electric and hybrid version are expected to begin later this year. The plug-in will be available for sale early next year.

Other models on the way include Chevrolet’s Equinox and Cruze, Porsche Panamera, Tesla’s Model 3, Toyota’s Prius Prime and Highlander, and 2016 Volvo S90.

Leave a Comment October 21, 2016

The Cost Advantage of Hybrid Cars over Diesel Cars

2015toyota_priuszvw50_a_2wd_rear1It has been almost two decades since the first ever Toyota Prius officially entered the market in Japan. Since then, the hybrid technology cost is now lower when compared to diesel. This is according to Satoshi Ogiso, the original lead engineer of the Prius.  Ogiso said during an interview with Bertel Schmitt, the Forbes’ contributor, that the hybrid technology that he has been part of since its inception has a cost advantage. In Europe and America, the cost of producing a diesel and an automatic hybrid system is now the same. This means that hybrids would, in the long run, have a cost advantage over the costs of battery electric cars. Now, after the Volkswagen diesel-gate, car manufacturers are required to set up more expensive emission treatments in order to adhere to government-mandated standards. According to these standards, car makers should produce vehicles with lower greenhouse gas emissions, especially nitrogen oxide.

A while back, diesels occupied almost half of the market share since they were perceived as the only solution to meeting the regulations and were cheaper compared to hybrids. Things have now changed considering higher cost of installing systems for treatment of such emissions. The hybrid and electric car batteries have become more powerful and cheaper, which has further magnified the hybrid case.  When it comes to pure battery electric vehicles, Ogiso said the numbers are likely to go up although they will not be the key transportation form. It has been estimated that on a global scale, over 50-60% of vehicles will be fuel cell or hybrid for the next ten or twenty years. The grounds behind this estimation are that the cost of batteries is gradually going down following increased access to battery research across the world.

The pure electric car cost is very much dependent on range with battery electric cars that can go for up to 250 km, requiring less production cost compared to hybrids. The market generally demands cars with a higher range. Battery electric cars with a range of more than 186 miles will still cost more through 2025. Automakers are aware of governmental emission standards and are gradually shifting to PHEVs from diesels. Volkswagen, Daimler and BMW already have plans of incorporating PHEVs to their fleet of cars. A PHEV is basically a standard hybrid car with an additional large-sized battery that you can easily recharge at home. The gasoline engine comes into operation after depletion of the battery energy so that the car can run as a hybrid.

 

Leave a Comment September 30, 2016

Is Investing in Hybrid Cars Still a Worthy Venture?

Toyota_Prius_(IV)_–_Frontansicht,_19._September_2015,_FrankfurtA few years ago, hybrid cars were viewed as the motor industry’s future. With intense calls to minimize the use of fuel-emitting traditional motors as well as increasing prices of gas, hybrid cars were clearly an attractive choice. The number of people purchasing the cars and investing in them also increased. Fast forwarding to 2016, it is undeniably clear that things have changed in the auto industry. Among the notable changes is the falling prices of cars. Hence, this poses a major question as to whether investing in hybrid vehicles is still worth it.

When the prices of gas stumbled the previous year, calls were made that electric and hybrid vehicles could not compete with gasoline powered cars. This is because a gallon of gas was priced at $2 in comparison to hybrid cars whose upfront cost was high. However, the low gas prices seem to have had a contrary effect to the green vehicle purchasing trend. Since the gas prices fell, more people chose to purchase hybrid cars. Hybrid car manufacturers overcompensated the low gas prices with discounts on the upfront prices of their cars. Last year, the sales of green cars hit a historical high of 17.8 million.

Another persuading factor is the role that the owners of hybrid cars are playing in conserving the planet. This premise only isn’t sufficient enough to convince a person to purchase a green car. Hence, so as to increase their financial viability, manufacturers are forced to give huge discounts on these hybrid cars. A major challenge and issue that has been raised is concerning their size. Research indicates that more purchasers are opting for larger cars such as people carriers and SUVs.

One of the most prominent names when it comes to hybrid cars is Toyota, famed for its Prius model. The automaker has gained so much popularity that it doesn’t have to put a lot of effort to attract customers. The automaker doesn’t have a plan of changing its strategy any time soon. According to its spokesperson, the company believes that its high bargaining power will play a role in making its prices stick. This is absolutely true since more than fifty percent of hybrid owners would settle for a Toyota model or its Lexus counterpart. These two companies have garnered a sufficient market and can comfortably sell models without enticing new customers. Generally, hybrid vehicles are a worthy investment with most manufacturers giving incredible savings. With the current market instability, one cannot predict when the prices of gas will increase again.

 

Leave a Comment August 26, 2016

Are Hybrid Cars Financially Sensible?

512px-Toyota_PriusThere are several types of hybrid cars available in the current market, in different body styles. These vehicles are a popular choice because of their fuel efficiency, coupled with low emissions. So, are hybrid cars a perfect option for you? For you to answer this question, you’ll need to consider a number of factors such as your financial situation, environmental priorities, and driving habits. Although the prices of gas are low today, they are subject to changing fast. Owning a hybrid car somewhat protects you from unexpected hikes in the prices of gas. This is a good reason to purchase a hybrid car when on a stringent budget.

Even in a scenario where the prices of gas don’t increase abruptly, you still manage to make savings on the costs of fuel when you drive a hybrid car. Your total gas savings increase when you drive for longer distances. The cost of the hybrid car itself is another factor to consider. For most hybrid cars, there is a premium that customers are required to pay, regardless of whether they are purchasing a compact vehicle or a large-sized SUV. This implies that you will need to save more money for the initial down payment. There is a possibility of facing huge monthly payments, as well as registration and insurance fees. It is therefore advisable to check and confirm these figures before purchasing a hybrid car.

Depending on your residence, governmental incentives are available for hybrid cars. This differs from one state to the other, as well as in various countries. Hence, you need to get accurate information from governmental offices concerning the incentives offered. Remember to also check the hybrid’s warranty and its relationship to the battery life. While some companies give lifetime warranties, others offer limited ones. If a battery fails after warranty period, clients will incur huge costs for replacement.

Another great reason for purchasing a hybrid car isn’t related to saving money. Rather, this car will help you to save time. In many regions, electric and hybrid car owners are allowed to utilize the carpool lane, regardless of the number of drivers. This is greatly beneficial to those with a rough commute. This saves time, a valuable asset in the current busy world. Purchasing a plug-in hybrid car means that you will get a parking space close to doors of office buildings, airports, and even malls. With a plug-in hybrid, you depend less on gasoline engine since the battery can be recharged from a station using electricity.

 

Leave a Comment July 29, 2016

Volkswagen to Produce Electric Cars by 2020 in North America

IAA_2013_Volkswagen_e-Golf_(9834814356)The reputation of Volkswagen has been compromised in the last few months. As an attempt to redeem itself, the automaker has announced its plan to produce electric vehicles by the year 2020 in North America. The newly appointed Volkswagen AG’s U.S. head of operations, Hinrich Woebcken officially confirmed that the automaker’s Chattanooga, Tennessee-based plant, as well as a Mexico-based facility may be utilized for production purposes. Although Woebcken didn’t give in-depth details, he confirmed that the car manufacturer plans to build multiple models.

From a political point of view, it would be wise to use the factory at Chattanooga considering the fact that Unites States regulators have been pushing for the manufacture of more electric cars. Woebcken said to the Wall Street Journal that they all believed that United States, particularly its urban mobility is likely to shift to electric and hybrid cars from petrol engines. A heavy investment has been made to enable the shift in question, and this is inclusive of the planned production in the North American region.

The intent of Volkswagen to produce electric cars is not really news. Prior to the scandal of Dieselgate, the automaker already had plans for introducing twenty plug-in hybrids and all-electric car by 2020. The automaker claimed that the planned vehicles would be dubbed “smartphones on wheels.” The announcement was then followed by CEO Matthias Muller’s notice last month that the company planned to launch at least thirty fully electric new cars by the year 2025. Currently, there are only three battery-electric vehicles offered by Volkswagen. These cars are Audi’s R8 e-tron, e-Golf and VW e-Up. Introducing thirty different models within a time span of ten years would seem a virtually impossible challenge for the automaker.

Efforts to minimize greenhouse gas emissions should begin with increasing the efficiency of transportation. Electric vehicles have overwhelming advantages over gasoline cars. Therefore the move by Volkswagen to increase electric car production will result in significant savings in terms of costs and environment. The use of all-electric power to drive short distances plays a significant role in reducing gasoline consumption. Electric vehicles don’t utilize gasoline whatsoever and they also release zero emissions when renewable sources of energy are used for recharging.

Whatever the actual figure is, producing electric cars on the mentioned Atlantic side of America will play a vital role in clearing the air for Volkswagen to progress. It would also be a great addition to the e-Golf, Volkswagen’s only electric car currently sold in the United States.

 

Leave a Comment July 29, 2016

Auto Insurance Available for Hybrid Vehicles at Low Costs Online

car-insurance-keyboard-crop-600x338A blog post had been released by the website, lowcostcarinsuranceprice.com giving an explanation on how to purchase hybrid vehicles’ auto insurance cheaply. The general popularity of hybrid cars is increasing, pushing for the need to have affordable insurance rates. Although it can be expensive to insure a hybrid car, the car’s high safety rating, fuel efficiency, and general functionality offer great compensation. Even when the prices are quite steep, purchasing a hybrid vehicle helps the environment, as well as other numerous advantages. This information was presented in a newly revealed blog post. One of the merits of a hybrid car is that of having high cost efficiency. This is most likely a key attractive feature of these cars. A hybrid vehicle can help drivers to save on the cost of fuel, since it can operate on both electricity and gasoline. This feature is also particularly beneficial for long-distance drivers.

Instant torque, regenerative braking system and availability of tax incentives are other noteworthy advantages. You must be wondering how to get yourself low priced auto insurance for your hybrid car. You can easily find one by visiting insurance websites that provide several insurance offers that you can use for your hybrid cars. Some insurance websites give several auto insurance quotes from different insurance companies. These websites are insurance brokers who send the information you provide to several different insurance companies and then give you the results. This can be a beneficial and easy way to get many quotes without having to go to the separate websites such as Farmers, Allstate, GEICO, etc.

Drivers who make comparisons of various auto insurance quotes are highly likely to get reduced coverage expenses. It has been found that exploring different coverage can help you save up to twenty-five percent on premiums. According to the Internet Marketing Company’s Marketing Director, Rusell Rabichev, hybrid vehicles are currently more popular compared to gasoline cars. If you have a plan on purchasing one, ensure that you’ve compared different auto insurance quotes that you can get from websites. This will help you land on offers that are advantageous to your budget.

Lowcostcarinsuranceprice.com and websites like them play the role of providing home, life, auto insurance, and health quotes. These websites are extraordinary since they doesn’t rely on a single type of insurance provider. Rather, it gives customers the best deals from several insurance carriers. This allows clients to access offers available from multiple carriers within a similar location. On the site, clients can access insurance plan quotes from different agencies including nationwide or local agencies as well as insurance company brand names.

 

Leave a Comment July 15, 2016

Excellent Choices in Plug-in Hybrid or Electric Cars

Candy_Red_Tesla_Model_3_trimmed_2Have you finally decided to switch from a gasoline-powered to a plug-in hybrid or electric car? Over the past few years, green cars have seen an increase in popularity as more people are realizing their numerous benefits. Each model year, car manufacturers have been increasing their offerings of cost-friendly and fun electric and plug-in hybrid cars. While buyers are clearly interested in the new vehicles, the new fuel efficacy regulations set under the leadership of President Obama have had a major impact in the industry. The rules have given automakers a basis for stepping up the production of less consumptive cars that can compete in cost with conventional gasoline-powered vehicles.

Additionally, consumers can save almost $8,000 in tax incentives, and probably a much higher figure from their state. The availability of such incentives has substantially lowered the costs involved in purchasing a plug-in hybrid or electric car. It means that it is extremely easy to opt out of gasoline and go for an electric car. A perfect case is Ford’s revamped C-Max Energi, a popular plug-in hybrid car with a range of about 500 miles and a 19-mile range when driving in a fully electric mode. This car’s retail price doesn’t exceed $28,000.

Not to be left behind, GM’s Chevrolet is also releasing several plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles that will be sold to consumers at reasonable prices. Chevy’s Spark electric has a range exceeding eighty miles per charge and its retail price is $19,000 dollars. The enthusiasts of the Chevrolet brand interested in a ride with more torque and engine power can settle for the Volt with a gasoline driving range of approximately 380 miles and 38 miles on all-electric driving. Its price tag has been estimated to not exceed $27,000.

Meanwhile, German car manufacturers continue to showcase their creativity in the electric vehicle sphere. The fully electric BMW i3 electric vehicle shoots from 0 to 60 within seven seconds, despite its not-so-attractive look. The fully electric i3 version retails for approximately $35,000 and its range is 81 miles per charge. However, owners have the option of adding a small-sized back up engine for an extra cost of $4,000, which would transform the car to a plug-in hybrid and give it a range of 150 miles. Let’s not forget Tesla’s Model 3 that is yet to be launched next year with its impressive range of 215 miles.

Hence, plug-in hybrid and electric cars are the future cars that should be embraced widely.

 

Leave a Comment May 27, 2016

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