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Types of hybrids explained (part 5)

Today we’ll be concluding our series of articles about the types of hybrids that are available with a type that is actually more of a subset of the plug-in hybrid category however with a bit of a difference.


Extended range electric vehicles

Extended range electric vehicles – EREVs – or range extended electric vehicles – REEVs – are actually plug-in hybrids but the different marketing name is meant to set them a bit apart from the rest while at the same time pointing out the key difference.

As opposed to the rest of the types of hybrids explained in earlier articles, the internal combustion engine in an EREV is not capable to drive the wheels, the purpose it serves being to recharge the car’s batteries when this is required.

In effect the petrol engine is subservient to the electric one, not the other way around, and this means that an EREV can mitigate two of the main problems with current Evs: range and charging time. On the other hand, the downside is the extra complexity and cost of having two different engine and power storage types located under the same roof.

No matter how hard or how gently you drive an EREV it will always run on its batteries, provided they have enough of a charge to do so. This means that for most of the driving experience it will feel like steering a pure EV, very silent, torquey and futuristic. Once the petrol engine kicks in it is much more like driving any other hybrid, however you might feel that there’s a bit of a difference between your driving style and the urgency of the petrol engine, at least as far sound goes.

So this concludes our series of articles in which we tried to explain the types of hybrids so that you have a better grasp of the subject since we talk about it so much.

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