Hybrid Cars Vs. Compact Cars By: Katie Rush & Tabitha Jacofsky Definition of Compact Cars Compact cars are small and can get into some of the tightest parking spots. There are a few different things that are considered before a car is put in the compact category, and what constitutes a compact car in the United States isn't necessarily used overseas. A compact car, by United States standards, is any car that is bigger than a super-mini car. Definition of Hybrid Cars A hybrid vehicle is a vehicle that uses an on-board rechargeable energy storage system (RESS) and a fuel based power source for vehicle propulsion. These vehicles use much less fuel than their counterparts and produce less emissions. Hybrid vehicles recharge their batteries by capturing kinetic energy through regenerative braking. Some hybrids use the combustion engine to generate electricity by spinning a generator to either recharge the battery or directly feed power to an electric motor that drives the vehicle. This takes place when cruising or in other situations where just light thrust is needed. Advantages of Hybrid Cars • combine clean energy of the electrical motor with the power of the gas-powered engine which results into lower emissions and better mileage. • reliable and comfortable as any traditional car and they have a tax benefits(only untill 2006). • purchase incentives (varies by state). • cleaner cars than normal vehicles with lesser CO and other greenhouse gas emissions. • provide a better mileage. • rapid developments in hybrid technology to improve engine efficiency. • Batteries do not need to be charged my external source • Special warranties • help reduce the dependency on fossil fuels which directly affects fuel prices. Advantages of Compact Cars • Fuel efficiency • Cheaper Insurance • Easier to fix • More available and practical Disadvantages of Hybrid Cars • High Cost (2,000- 5,000 dollars more than a non hybrid cars) • More weight due to heavy battery packs • Possible fees for registration • If an accident occurs there is a risk of exposure to high voltage wires due to battery packs • Complicated system • Spare parts more difficult to find • Lower acceleration Disadvantages of Compact cars • Not environment friendly • Very small compared to other vehicles • Safety • Unable to haul large or heavy items History of Compact Cars The history of compact cars is the history of engineering for both fuel economy and low cost. "Compact car" is an American term used to describe a car smaller than a mid- sized saloon. The history of compact cars dates back to the beginning of the automotive era and ends with modern production cars that focus on low cost of acquisition, safety and fuel economy. History of Hybrid Cars The German Dr. Ferdinand Porsche, at age 23, built his first car, the Lohner Electric Chaise. It was the world's first front-wheel- drive. Porsche's second car was a hybrid, using an internal combustion engine to spin a generator that provided power to electric motors located in the wheel hubs. On battery alone, the car could travel nearly 40 miles. How Hybrids Work Regenerative Braking. The electric motor applies resistance to the drive train causing the wheels to slow down. In return, the energy from the wheels turns the motor, which functions as a generator, converting energy normally wasted during coasting and braking into electricity, which is stored in a battery until needed by the electric motor. Electric Motor Drive/Assist. The electric motor provides additional power to assist the engine in accelerating, passing, or hill climbing. This allows a smaller, more efficient engine to be used. In some vehicles, the motor alone provides power for low-speed driving conditions where internal combustion engines are least efficient. Automatic Start/Shutoff. Automatically shuts off the engine when the vehicle comes to a stop and restarts it when the accelerator is pressed. This prevents wasted energy from idling. Evolution of Hybrid Cars • In the first few years of the twentieth century, thousands of electric and hybrid cars were produced.Some cars made in 1903 by the Krieger company, used a gasoline engine to supplement a battery pack. Henry Ford’s assembly line and the advent of the self-starting gas engine signaled a rapid decline in hybrid cars by 1920. • 1916 Two prominent electric-vehicle makers — Baker of Cleveland and Woods of Chicago — offered hybrid cars. Woods claimed that their hybrid reached a top speed of 35 mph and achieved fuel efficiency of 48 mpg. The Woods Dual Power was more expensive and less powerful than its gasoline competition, and therefore sold poorly. • 1999 Honda released the two-door Insight, the first hybrid car to hit the mass market in the United States. The Insight won numerous awards and received EPA mileage ratings of 61 mpg city and 70 mpg highway. • 2000 Toyota released the Toyota Prius, the first hybrid four-door sedan available in the United States. • 2002 Honda introduced the Honda Civic Hybrid its second commercially available hybrid gasoline-electric car. The appearance and drivability of the Civic Hybrid was (and still is) identical to the conventional Civic. Evolution of Compact Cars Microcars Citroën 2CV Early designs of very small, very affordable cars that used very One of the earliest commercially little fuel began after World War successful compact cars was the Citroën II. Microcars, or bubble cars, 2CV. Produced from 1949 to 1990, the were three- or four-wheel 2CV has one of the longest production vehicles that usually had two runs in automotive history. The original seats: one for the driver and one 2CV used an air cooled 375cc engine. for the passenger. Some of these The original model produced nine cars placed the seats next to horsepower and could achieve a top each other, and others placed speed of 40 mph. It wouldn't be until the passenger behind the driver. 1981 that a 2CV would have a large Early manufacturers of enough engine for safe driving on microcars included United States highways. Although it was Messerschmidt, BMW, Sunbeam affordable and could seat four adults, and Singer. the 2CV was the butt of many jokes, including one suggesting that the 2CV could do zero to 60 "in a day." Evolution Continued The VW Rabbit was the first compact The micro car was reborn in 1998 with the hatchback to be well received in the production of the Smart. The Smart is American market. Introduced in 1975 designed by the Swiss watchmaker Swatch with an engine that produced a and produced by Mercedes-Benz. The Smart meager 70 horsepower, it had is a very unusual car design, which features passable performance with decent two seats and a three-door hatchback fuel economy and Comfort. design. With plastic body panels that are Volkswagen began offering a diesel user-replaceable and recyclable, the car model that got incredible fuel features a number of cutting edge green car economy, but could only achieve 48 design. It sports a one-liter engine that horsepower. In 1985, the Rabbit was produces 78 horsepower, which makes a car renamed the Golf in North America. this light sporty and fun to drive. Smart cars are distributed in North America by Penske Automotive. So Which is Better? In the long run, hybrid cars are better for the environment and save money on gas. They are a good a choice for people who are willing to spend a higher amount of money upfront and save more in the future. Compact cars however are more practical and fuel efficient. They realistic for families with limited budgets. Although they are not as environmentally friendly they are more cost adequate.
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