Transportation

Hybrid and electric cars are a popular because of their high fuel efficiency – they save the planet while saving you money. Carsharing and ride sharing are also on the rise, especially in big cities around the globe. Learn about the different vehicle options, MPGs and driving in various parts of the country so you can ride this trend into the future.

What Makes a Car Hybrid?

Car driving on highway

All hybrid cars share at least three common factors. In fact, all three capabilities must be present in order for the vehicle to be classified as hybrid. These three steps include: Regenerative braking, idle-off capability and power assist. These steps are explained below in more detail. Read on to learn more about what makes a car a hybrid

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How do Hybrid Cars Work?

Hybrid blocks

The term hybrid is one of the hottest buzz words to enter the English lexicon. In our global economy and an ever-growing awareness of the limitations of our resources, people everywhere are concerned about how we can maintain our lifestyles into the future. There is a plethora of curiosity, enthusiasm and confusion surrounding this term as we face high gas prices and a bleak forecast for our natural environment. Our lifestyles are being threatened, and so people all over the world look to the hybrid car as a potential solution, allowing us to continue speeding across our lands and living our lives of convenience. With all these concerns riding on the success of new technology, it is no wonder that people want to know, in simple terms, how do hybrid cars work…

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Toyota Prius Party in California

Toyota Prius driving on the road

On a recent visit to San Francisco I was amazed at the number of Toyota Priuses on the road. I don’t think at any one time I could look in any direction on the highway or on city streets and not see one. It’s no wonder that the American auto market has been eclipsed by foreign auto makers, not the least of which is Toyota, riding the success wave of their gas-electric hybrid, the Prius.

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The World is Running out of Crude Oil

Oil leaking in the shape of the United States

The reality of the situation is that crude oil is a fossil fuel, something that cannot be recreated or regenerated, and the world is rapidly running out of this so-called precious resource. Even the Middle East (Saudi Arabia), stockpiling some of the largest crude oil reserves in the world, will eventually run out. Because of its deep integration in our society, businesses and individuals depend on oil. Carmakers, airplane manufacturers, and various manufacturing and processing facilities thrive on the profits generated by oil-based equipment. What these companies are failing to realize is that there’s not much left. United States oil production peaked in the early 1970’s, and we are now completely out of crude oil, depending on other nations for our oil imports. Because of its limited availability, crude oil is bound to run out everywhere sooner or later. And that time is closer than we think…

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Toyota Prius MPG: Fuel Efficient or Not?

Toyota Prius 2009

When it comes to hybrid cars, one of the most important, if not the most important metric, are the mpg’s (miles per gallon). So how many miles per gallon does your Prius hybrid get? When I accompanied my fiance to buy one last year, we were greeted with an EPA mpg on the sticker touting a city mpg of 60, and a highway mpg of 50.

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Plug-In Hybrid Automobiles: Better Than Fuel Based Cars?

Electric car parked in log with leaves

Hybrid cars use a combination of fuel and stored electrical power (in a battery) to optimize fuel consumption and help reduce emissions. They can be seen as a stepping stone between fuel-based cars and electric automobiles. What many consumers, as well as owners of hybrid automobiles don’t realize, is that it’s possible to purchase a kit that will turn your hybrid into a plug-in hybrid automobile. In other words, into an electric vehicle. The problem with these kits is that they currently are only available on the black market, and as such they will invalidate your warranty if you install them. They are also better suited to certain hybrid automobile models than to others…

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