PHEVs can be configured to operate serially, or in a blended fashion. In a serial configuration, the vehicle runs on electricity alone at some points, like starting, and uses its other power source alone at others, for example, when accelerating. Alternatively, a plug-in hybrid may be configured for blended operation, with the battery and the conventional engine operating together.
Advantages of PHEVS:
- Reduced fuel consumption and tailpipe emissions
- Cleaner electric energy through advances in natural gas and coal gasification
- Optimized fuel efficiency and performance
- Recovered energy from regenerative braking
- Unchanged gas station infrastructure
- Grid connection potential
- "Home based" battery recharging at a fraction of the cost of petroleum equivalent
- Pure zero emission capability
- Even lower fueling costs compared to battery sustaining hybrids
- Possible use in secondary markets for used batteries and reduced waste
- Cost and complexity of two powertrains
- Component availability--batteries, powertrains, power electronics
- Higher initial cost
- Cost of batteries and battery replacement
- Added weight
"Over the next two to three years, all major automakers—and some start-ups—intend to put [Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles] PHEVs on the road" (An Action Plan)
"Plug-in vehicles can be driven for roughly one-third to one-fourth the cost of a gasoline-powered vehicle" (Transportation Electrification)
"If the [electric] vehicle is plugged in every day, as recommended, it may be possible to drive 1000-2000 miles or more between fill-ups" (Plugging-In)
"PHEVs reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 32% compared to conventional vehicles" (Lithium Ion Batteries)
"Pike Research estimates an annual sales growth rate of 106% for PEVs between 2010 and 2015" (Plug-in Electric Vehicles: A Practical Plan for Progress)
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