“Hybrids and Plug-Ins and Gas, oh my!” When it comes to the latest 21st Century automotive powerplants we’re definitely not in Kansas anymore. Although we wouldn’t be surprised if the great and powerful Wizard of Oz himself was very impressed with the remarkable advancements in automotive hybrid, plug-in, and gasoline engine technology on the road today.
For many years, Toyota has been at the forefront of cutting-edge hybrid technology. The automaker also builds some of the most sophisticated gasoline-powered engines on the market. But with all this new environmentally friendly technology, it may be a bit confusing to understand the differences between these three types of engine technologies, as well as their unique benefits.
Let’s take a look at these three different types of car engines, starting first with hybrids.
Toyota’s Groundbreaking Hybrid Technology
Currently, Toyota offers 7 different hybrid models, including the Camry Hybrid, Avalon Hybrid, Highlander Hybrid, RAV4 Hybrid, and three different models of the Prius, the hybrid that started it all.
In fact, the history of the Prius goes all the way back to 1997 when this remarkable hybrid electric mid-size hatchback debuted in Japan. Today, the EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB) recognize the Prius as among the cleanest vehicles sold in the U.S. “Prius” in Latin means “first” or “original.” It’s a fitting name for a car that helped bring environmental consciousness to mainstream automotive thinking.
2016 Prius: The Original
Let’s take a look under the hood of the brilliant and completely redesigned 2016 Prius for sale in Lakewood, NJ at Toyota World of Lakewood and see just how this hybrid/electric technology works.
The Prius is considered to be what’s called a “combined hybrid” vehicle. It features both a 1.8-liter 4-cylinder, Atkinson-cycle ECVT gasoline engine and an electric motor powered by either high-voltage Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) or Lithium Ion (Li-ion) batteries. Toyota calls this technology “Hybrid Synergy Drive® (HSD).
Electric Or Gas Or Both
The 2016 Prius can be driven either in all-electric mode, by the car’s gas engine, or by a combination of both. Regenerative braking is used to recharge the battery pack continually. The gas engine also recharges the batteries. Two electric motors work in concert with the gas engine, adding more available torque to the equation during periods of hard acceleration. At low speeds, such as pulling away from a stop, the HSD can operate independently of the gas engine. At higher speeds, the gasoline engine engages because this is more efficient on the highway.
The ability of the Prius to operate solely on electric power alone for brief stretches combined with the smaller, lighter and more fuel-efficient gasoline engine allow the Prius to achieve outstanding mileage numbers. It’s EPA-rated at 54 mpg city/50 mpg highway. The Prius Two Eco model gets even more impressive fuel economy, extending EPA-estimated highway mileage to 58 mpg.
Another benefit of the Hybrid Synergy Drive is reduced C02 emissions. Toyota estimates that the Prius family of hybrids have reduced carbon emissions by more than 11 million tons.
Completely redesigned for 2016 and featuring a futuristic wedge-shaped design, Prius comes in three distinct models: The Prius, Prius c, and Prius v.
Plug-in Hybrid (PHV)
The groundbreaking 2017 Prius Prime is ready to take Toyota’s innovative hybrid/electric technology further than ever before. It shatters both expectations and fuel economy ratings, stretching the limits of fuel efficiency for extraordinary range. In fact, the Prius Prime can be driven for up to 600 miles without a fill-up, achieving an astonishing EPA-estimated 120 MPGe.
The Prius Prime works much like the previously described Hybrid Synergy Drive. What sets it apart is that it has a larger battery and more powerful electric motors. This allows the Prius Prime to operate entirely on electric energy alone for up to 22 miles, making it perfect for urban commuting and around-town use.
Charge And Go
You can charge the Prime’s battery at home or at one of many public charging stations that are becoming more available throughout the country. However, unlike plug-in vehicles that rely only on electric power, the Prius Prime’s gasoline engine takes over when the batteries are depleted. This allows you to take extended drives or long trips without having to worry about searching for a charging station when the battery is close to being fully discharged. Additionally, regenerative braking helps to recharge the battery on the Prius Prime as well.
The Prime’s battery can typically be charged using a standard household outlet in just under six hours. Charging it at a 240-volt charging station reduces charging time to 2.5 hours.
Another reason why the Prius Prime achieves such fantastic fuel economy numbers is the way it’s engineered. For the first time, Toyota is using a carbon-fiber-reinforced rear hatch to reduce weight. Additionally, the Prius Prime’s slippery aerodynamic design allows it to reduce drag significantly and boost mileage.
The visionary and breathtaking new 2017 Prius Prime Plug-in Hybrid will be arriving at Toyota dealerships sometime in late 2016. Be sure to check with Lakewood Toyota for updates.
Internal Combustion Engine (ICE)
The gasoline engine has come a long way since Karl Benz created the first successful ICE back in 1885. The principal behind a 4-stoke gas engine is straightforward. Volatile gasoline is mixed with air in the carburetor and is drawn or injected into a cylinder containing a piston connected to a crankshaft. On the “compression” stroke, the piston moves upward, compressing the air/fuel mixture. On the “power” stroke, a spark plug ignites the mixture, forcefully pushing the cylinder downward and thus turning the crankshaft. On the “exhaust” stroke, the piston pushes the spent gasses through valves at the top of the cylinder head that open and then close to allow the piston to draw in a fresh supply of fuel mixture into the cylinder’s chamber. This cycle then repeats.
Through the years, this basic process has undergone extensive refinement to provide greater power and performance, along with increased fuel efficiency. Advancements such as Direct Fuel Injection and Variable Valve Timing are but two of the many engineering innovations that make today’s Toyota’s gasoline-powered engines models of performance and efficiency.
2016 Corolla Demonstrates Toyota’s Engineering Mastery
Fast-forward to 2016 and experience this innovative engineering in the all-new 2016 Toyota Corolla LE Eco for sale in Lakewood, NJ at Toyota World of Lakewood.
The redesigned and sport-styled 2016 Corolla is a rolling showcase of Toyota’s most advanced engineering. While the Prius and Prius Prime take fuel efficiency to new heights, the new 2016 Corolla LE Eco model’s 1.8-liter, 4-cylinder DOHC engine with Dual Variable Valve Timing and Intelligence (VVT-i) delivers up to an EPA-estimated 42 mpg highway/30 mpg city. This is thanks to a CVT-Si Valvematic transmission that helps contribute to these exceptional fuel economy numbers. The 2016 Corolla LE Eco model also features a special ECO Mode that boosts fuel economy even further.
Toyota. Fueling the future of automotive innovation today. Experience it today at your preferred Toyota new car dealership in Lakewood, NJ, Toyota World of Lakewood.
We’re Fueling Spectacular Savings At Toyota World Of Lakewood
Discover Toyota’s outstanding lineup of fuel-efficient new 2016 Toyotas for sale in New Jersey at your hometown Toyota dealer, Toyota World of Lakewood. With one of New Jersey’s largest inventories, you’re sure to find the perfect Toyota to suit your lifestyle and your budget.
Experience the engineering excellence, unsurpassed reliability, and award-winning quality of Toyota today at Toyota World of Lakewood. Visit us today at 118 Ocean Avenue, Lakewood, NJ 08701. Or call us to schedule a test drive at 888-890-7729.