What is a hybrid?
- Hybrid cars combine petrol or diesel with an electric drive
- Hybrids are incredibly economical on short trips in the city
- Ordinary hybrid cars don't have to be recharged, but plug-in hybrids do
Everyone's heard of them and everyone's talking about them too. But how a hybrid car works and
what the benefits are for the environment and your wallet may not always be clear. Don't worry, we'll explain...
How hybrid cars work
Hybrid cars have, in addition to a traditional petrol or diesel motor, an electric motor.
Electric motors rely on the car’s braking energy, which is conveniently stored in a battery.
The electric drive is activated when the combustion engine consumes or emits too much.
Usually, that’s when the car starts and stops a lot, or frequently has to start from a standstill.
In other words, we’re talking about city traffic.
You never have to charge a hybrid car yourself. It does it automatically,
with a little help from the combustion engine from time to time, when needed.
Hybrids are more environmentally friendly and sustainable and just as easy to use!
Economical and environmentally friendly
The electric motor takes over the more 'energy consuming' tasks of the traditional motor.
As a result, hybrids don’t consume much and have low emissions, especially in the city and for shorter trips.
Admittedly, the purchase price of a hybrid car is still high.
But you should keep in mind that you won’t have to stop buy a petrol station nearly as often.
A plug-in hybrid is a hybrid that you have to charge yourself (i.e., plug in).
That means they're like fully electric cars, they just require a lower charge current and take less time to charge.
Plug-in hybrids can run 30 to 50 km just on electricity.
The charging schedule may require a little discipline and getting used to, but in the end,
you'll simply drive most distances in full electric mode.
And for longer distances, the combustion engine takes over again.
Pretty luxurious, no?
You have to plug in a plug-in hybrid yourself, but it has significant autonomy.
Yes, plug-in hybrids are even more expensive than a regular hybrid, but you'll earn that investment back faster.
From a tax point of view too, these cars are just that bit more cost-efficient.
In Flanders, they are fully exempt from all traffic taxes (up to 50 g CO2/km)/km) until the end of 2020.
In the other regions, some plug-in models have a lower vehicle registration tax.