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Are you thinking of buying a hybrid car? Listen

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 Are you thinking of buying a hybrid car? Listen

In March, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finalized a long-standing rule requiring automakers to dramatically increase the number of battery-powered vehicles they are putting on the roads. The government has mandated that by 2032, more than half of new cars sold in the United States will be electric. There are some caveats, namely that plug-in hybrid cars will meet federal requirements for what is a “battery-powered” vehicle.

This has caused an avalanche of hybrid cars to hit the market. This week we talk about what this means for people considering buying a new car now or in the next few years. We explain the differences between plug-in hybrids, full hybrids and electric vehicles, and tell you what your options are if you live in an apartment without a convenient place to plug in your car while it’s parked.

This week we’re joined by WIRED staff writer Aarian Marshall as he breaks down the facts, busts the myths, and turns us all into hybrid car experts.

Show notes

Read Aarian’s story on new US emissions rules. Also read his story on automakers struggling to meet their electric car sales goals in the United States.


Aarian recommends going to one of those baseball games where you also bring your dog. (They let you handle the bases!) Mike recommends The New York Trilogy of the novelist Paul Auster, who died this week aged 77. Lauren recommends LightsBen Lerner’s newest book of poetry and prose.

Aarian Marshall can be found on social media @arian marshall. Lauren Goode is @laurengoode. Michael Calore is @snack fight. Bling the main hotline at @gadget lab. The show is produced by Boone Ashworth (@booneashworth). Our musical theme is Solar keys.

How to listen

You can always listen to this week’s podcast through the audio player on this page, but if you want to subscribe for free to get all the episodes, here’s how:

If you’re on an iPhone or iPad, open the app called Podcasts, or just tap this link. You can also download an app like Overcast or Pocket Casts and search for Gadget Lab. If you’re on Android, you can find us on the Google Podcasts app by simply playing here. They were in Spotify also. And in case you really need it, here is the RSS feed.

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