As the world seeks sustainable and environmentally friendly modes of travel, car companies push to meet demand. But there is more than one way of creating green vehicles. Let’s take a look at the types of green vehicles in existence today.
What are Green Vehicles?
A green vehicle is a car that is less harmful to the environment, oftentimes being an electric vehicle, plug-in hybrid electric, hybrid, flex fuel, or a hydrogen fuel cell. What are the differences? Let’s find out.
There are tons of electric vehicles out there. You are bound to know a few of them, such as any Tesla and the BMW i3. While these cars are becoming more common, not everyone knows how they work. An electric vehicle is powered by electric motors, and the energy is stored in batteries alone. Using batteries is one way to cut down on fuel emissions, especially since electric vehicles use electricity and not diesel or gasoline.
Plug-In Hybrid Electric
A plug-in hybrid electric is similar to an electric vehicle in the sense that it can be powered using batteries, but the difference is that a plug-in hybrid uses both electricity and fuel. These batteries are rechargeable through plug-in stations, at home or at public charging stations, and operate using either fuel or electricity or both at the same time. Many car companies, such as Hyundai with their Ioniq Plug-in Hybrid, are turning some of their models into plug-in hybrids in an attempt to be more eco-friendly.
A hybrid vehicle uses a battery as well as fuel to power the car. So what is the difference between a hybrid and a plug-in hybrid? The biggest difference between these two types usually comes down to size, cost, and intended purpose. While a plug-in hybrid’s battery is recharged using a charging cable, the hybrid’s battery is recharged by the car’s gas-powered engine.
A flex-fuel vehicle, or a dual-fuel vehicle, is a car that can use different kinds of fuel. This type of vehicle is different because it is not electric whatsoever. While this car is fully gas-powered, it is considered a green vehicle because it can use alternative types of ethanol and methanal. Shockingly, these cars can store both fuels in one common tank and still power the car just fine.
Hydrogen Fuel Cell
The hydrogen fuel cell vehicle is definitely the most unique type of green vehicle on this list. These kinds of vehicles are similar to electric vehicles because they use an electric motor instead of a standard internal combustion engine. However, electric vehicles run on batteries, and these do not. In a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, hydrogen gas from the vehicle’s fuel tank is combined with oxygen from the air to produce electricity with only water and heat as part of the process. It’s incredible!
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