What is a Hybrid Car and How Does it Work?

2022 Kia Sorento Hybrid Parked

Hybrid vehicle technology was once scarcely used in the automotive market, but that is certainly not the case anymore. Hybrid cars can be found all over the roads of Corona and Fontana, and eco-conscious drivers love these vehicles for their fuel savings and ease of use. So, what is a hybrid car and how does it work? Riverside Kia covers the basics of hybrid vehicle technology to help you determine if this type of ride is right for you. You can also see what sets hybrids apart from full EVs.

How Hybrid Cars Work

Hybrid vehicles feature two power sources. The first is a traditional internal combustion engine, and the second is an electric battery. Both sources work in tandem to cut back on the use of fuel. The two most common hybrid configurations are parallel and series hybrids. Let’s see what sets the two apart below.

Parallel Hybrid

Parallel hybrids are the most common. These models have an electric motor and a gasoline engine, and both are connected to the transmission. Both power sources are blended together to propel the vehicle forward.

Series Hybrid

With a series hybrid, there is still an electric motor paired with a gasoline engine. However, only the motor is paired to the transmission. The electric motor is actually the only power source. The purpose of the gasoline engine is to act as a generator for the electric motor.

How Hybrid Cars Work Compared to Plug-In Electric Vehicles

If you have been searching for an eco-friendly vehicle, you may also have come across plug-in hybrids over the course of your search. How are these models different from a traditional hybrid?

  • Standard hybrid vehicles need a gasoline-powered engine to charge the battery during your drives in San Bernardino.
  • Traditional hybrids use their gas and electric motors interchangeably to get the most out of every drop of gas.
  • Plug-in hybrids are equipped with a larger battery that is charged with a 120-volt or 240-volt outlet. They also feature a “backup” gasoline engine.
  • Plug-in hybrids use electric power until the battery is drained. When that happens, they switch over to the gasoline engine.

Explore How Hybrid Cars Work Today

The Kia lineup features a number of hybrids and plug-in hybrids. If a hybrid has piqued your interest, why not see what you can expect by getting behind the wheel for a test drive. We also invite you to contact us with any questions. In the meantime, you can learn about the basics of charging an electric car and more!


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