I have been a proud owner of a 2007 Toyota Prius for almost five years now, and I am very satisfied with its performance and durability. I asked my mechanic how my car operates and he simplified the concept for me. Basically he explained that my vehicle utilizes both gas and electric through a system known as “Integrated Motor Assist.” Through this process, the car generally runs electric, however, it shifts into a mode where gas is utilized when accelerated at higher speeds.
Although the car is not entirely electric, the “Integrated Motor Assist” system plays a major role, because in the long run I end up saving a substantial amount of money on gas. Here are some other pros of owning a hybrid:
1. No More Waiting in the Winter Time!
Have you ever hated the fact that you had to start your vehicle and wait for it to warm up before you begin driving? Especially during the winter time, it is unpleasant to sit inside a cold vehicle and wait a few minutes before you can proceed to go any where. Well, fortunately for us, the hybrid has a system in which coolant is stored and kept warm. For us, this basically means no more dreadful waiting. Now we can just start and go! This is just another reason why I appreciate my hybrid.
2. Noiseless Engine
Sometimes many of us have to leave for work in the late evening, and we hate how some car engines are loud enough to notify our neighbors when we are in and out. These obnoxious engines may disturb your family or other peoples sleep in the middle of the night. Thankfully with a hybrid, you can just press a button, let the car roll down hill and exit your driveway smoothly without waking anybody up. Even if this scenario may not apply to you, it is still a nifty feature.
3. Generally Less Maintenance Required
Obviously you still have to provide regular routine maintenance such as oil changes, etc. However the fact that the hybrid is electric essentially takes a big stress off of your engine causing less “wear and tear.” I also noticed that my brake maintenance has decreased drastically compared to when I owned my 2005 Chrysler Town and Country. My mechanic informed me that through a system called “regenerative braking,” less impact and stress are used on regular braking and it more or less operates through electric.
I have experienced many benefits with having an electric car. However, there are some cons to owning a hybrid:
Less Miles Per Gallon Used on the High Way
The only downside to my vehicle is when you exceed a certain speed the electric part shuts off. The “Integrated Motor Assist” to me is helpful but at the same time counter productive once you drive on the highway. Don’t get me wrong, when I am driving through the city I am pretty much able to get an average of 55 miles per gallon. However on the highway it is usually 40- 45 miles per gallon.
Clearly the pros outnumber the cons of the Hybrid. After seven years, I remain completely satisfied and comfortable with my Prius. I have never experienced a situation where the battery has failed me. My vehicle also shows the current mileage and the average miles per gallon which makes it easy to calculate and determine when the next gas run would be.
Needless to say, I believe Hybrids aren’t overrated. They fulfill the jobs they were designed for and they live up to their energy efficient and environmental friendly demeanor. Subsequently, if you are looking for a fast sporty car then a hybrid is clearly the wrong choice for you. If you are interested in saving money and protecting your environment, then a hybrid is the best vehicle suitable for those purposes.