The term that really applies is HEV, which stands for hybrid electric vehicle. These are the most fuel efficient vehicles available for majority of us.
While actual configuration may vary due to the design intentions of the manufacturer, they generally combine a small (by regular vehicle standards) gasoline engine with an electric motor.
While the gasoline engine does most of the locomotion at highway speeds, when less fuel is required, it also is available to provide the extra power that the electric motor cannot provide or sustain for long.
The electric battery/motor combination can start the car moving in some instances, maintain systems without the gasoline motor having to idle at stops such as lights and in drive thrus, and can assist the gasoline motor as it propels the hybrid vehicle down the road. Not only is fuel being saved while the electric motor is maintaining vehicle systems in what would normally be idling situations, but this means that less pollution is being emitted into the air, usually within the confines of our most polluted areas…our cities. Continue reading “How Do Hybrid Vehicles Get That Great Gas Mileage?”