Plug-in hybrid cars emit THREE TIMES more carbon dioxide than official figures suggest
Plug-in hybrid cars can emit up to three times more carbon dioxide than advertised, as real-world tests show that some are more polluting than lighter gasoline vehicles.
Hybrid cars make use of an electric motor that runs on batteries to support its internal combustion engine and is often promoted as an ecological option.
However, a series of studies have revealed that the fuel consumption rates of hybrid vehicles are much higher in the real world than in the test conditions.
The reason for this is that hybrids, which contain an additional electric motor and a battery, tend to be heavier than their gasoline counterparts.
In addition, many owners of plug-in hybrids are neglecting the load of their vehicles, running them only on gasoline and losing the benefits of the dual system.
The findings come after the announcement by the United Kingdom Government on Thursday that sales of gasoline, diesel and hybrid cars will be banned from 2035 onwards.
The measure, aimed at reducing air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions, advances the timeline for the gradual elimination of fossil fuel-driven cars in five years.
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Plug-in hybrid cars can emit up to three times more carbon dioxide than advertised, as real-world tests show that some are more polluting than lighter gasoline vehicles (stock image)
"When properly charged, plug-in hybrid vehicles allow drivers to complete most trips in a fully electric mode," said Ewa Kmietowicz, Leader of the Transportation Team of the Climate Change Commission the Telegraph.
& # 39; However, there is concern that plug-in hybrids are not used as intended, reaching less than a third of miles in electric mode and with the risk of higher emissions.
"By the end of the year, most new models of fully electric vehicles can cover 150 miles on a single charge, and the need for plug-in hybrids will inevitably decrease."
A study by the fuel management firm The Miles Consultancy audited the consumption of several plug-in hybrid electric vehicles popular among car fleet drivers.
The Crewe-based company found that vehicles, produced by manufacturers such as BMW, Mercedes, Mitsubishi and Volkswagen, often showed fuel consumption figures between 2.5 and 3 times higher than what had been announced.
An audit of 187 BMW plug-in hybrids charged regularly, for example, found an average fuel economy of only 42 miles per gallon, compared to the 137 miles claimed per gallon.
Similarly, experts have discovered that cars with visible carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of less than 50 grams per kilometer often emit three times more in real driving conditions.
In fact, a 2018 study of plug-in hybrids by researchers in Norway concluded that “ the estimated average annual CO2 emission was approximately 2.5 times higher than the value established in the official CO2 emission approval test & # 39; & # 39 ;, the Telegraph reported.
Experts said many owners of plug-in hybrids are neglecting the charge of their vehicles, that they run on gasoline only and that they lose the benefits of the dual system
What are hybrid vehicles?
A hybrid vehicle has two sources of energy, a gasoline engine and an electric motor, which combine to drive cars forward.
By switching smoothly between pure electric power at low speeds and efficient gasoline energy when speeds increase, these vehicles not only save fuel and money, but also reduce CO2 emissions.
Hybrids can self-charge, which means that every time you drive, the battery is charging, using technology such as a regenerative braking system, which recovers the energy that would normally be lost and stores it in the battery for later use.
Automatic charging hybrids do not need to be plugged in.
A plug-in hybrid gets all the benefits of being a hybrid, but it also has a charging point so you can extend the reach of your car by plugging it into your home or at one of the country's electric charging points.
However, plug-in hybrids have proven popular with the car audience, and industry predictions suggest that car sales in Europe will increase this year from 220,000 to 590,000 units.
Part of this interest has been driven, perhaps, by the tax exemptions offered to the company's car owners.
Unfortunately, experts fear that the drivers of these vehicles are being incentivized to avoid recharging their cars in their homes at their expense in favor of recharging only with gasoline on the company's credit card.
PLUGGLE HYBRIDS: REAL FUEL ECONOMIES VS ANNOUNCED
|Fuel economy announced
(in miles per gallon)
| Real fuel economy
(in miles per gallon)
|BMW plug-in hybrids (average)||137.0||42.0|
|Volkswagen plug-in hybrids (average)||163.0||52.0|
SOURCE: The Miles Consultancy
The findings come after the announcement by the UK government on Thursday that sales of gasoline, diesel and hybrid cars would be banned from 2035 onwards. In the photo, Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks at the UN Climate Summit COP26 at the London Science Museum, where planned bans were announced.
"There is a real risk that drivers adopt plug-in hybrid electric vehicles for the right reasons, but without knowing it, they actually increase their fuel bills," The Miles Consultancy managing director Paul Hollick told the Telegraph.
"According to the evidence in our sample, one has to wonder if some plug-in hybrid electric vehicles ever see a charging cable."
"In many cases, we see that plug-in hybrid electric vehicles never charge, make longer journeys and this is not a good option for many car users."
"All this is very confusing for motorists," Emissions Analytics executive director Nick Molden told the Telegraph.
"The problem is that official figures are very sensitive to assumptions about how plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are loaded and driven."
However, plug-in hybrids have proven popular with the car audience, and industry predictions suggest that car sales will increase in Europe this year from around 220,000 to 590,000 units.
"The Mitsubishi Outlander plug-in hybrid electric vehicle was originally tested for emissions and fuel economy in a fully charged state," a Mitsubishi UK spokesman told the Telegraph. They added: "We declare in our promotional material that the official figures are only for comparison with similar vehicles and that they may not reflect the results of driving in real life."
"The Mitsubishi Outlander plug-in hybrid electric vehicle was originally tested for emissions and fuel economy in a fully charged state," a Mitsubishi UK spokesman told the Telegraph.
The Outlander is one of the most popular plug-in hybrids in the market.
"The additional performance provided by the energy stored in the battery naturally has a significant impact on its overall efficiency."
"We declare in our promotional material that the official figures are only for comparison with similar vehicles and may not reflect the results of driving in real life," they added.
According to the firm, a survey conducted among the owners of Mitsubishi plug-in hybrid electric vehicles found that 96 percent claim to charge their car at least once a week and 68 percent said they recharged their vehicle daily.
Meanwhile, a Kia spokesman told the Telegraph that the proper method of operating plug-in hybrids is explained to customers when they buy and take possession of such vehicles.
"But Kia cannot guarantee that the owners always follow that advice once the vehicle leaves the supply concessionaire, that responsibility lies with the owner."
"If a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle is used correctly, fuel savings will be improved and exhaust pipe emissions reduced."
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