Since this article was published there have been substantial developments for electric and hybrid cars in the Australian marketplace.To view the latest review click here.
Hybrid cars are fast becoming a real alternative for the Australian motorist.
Advances in technology plus the ever increasing price of fuel at the bowser in Australia has ensured that today, more than ever, the savings that hybrid cars can offer, look extremely attractive. When comparing hybrid cars with their petrol counterparts you can expect to pay more for a hybrid, but it should pay you back over a number of years. You’ll use a lot less fuel – as little as 4.4litres/100 kms. and help the environment, too..
A hybrid electric car (or petrol-electric hybrid powered car) is a car that uses electricity as well as petrol to power the motor. This makes them extremely fuel efficient so this means they are not only enviromentally friendly, but also very economical on the hip pocket. On average a hybrid car uses less than half the fuel of a ‘normal’ family car. Please note: HybridCars do not need to be ‘plugged in’! The batteries actually get charged from the kinetic energy produced by the vehicle itself.
Hybrid cars feel different, they are quiet, very quiet, and the engine turns itself off at traffic lights. So ensure you take one for a test drive to be certain that you can be comfortable driving one.
Currently there are three hybrid cars available in Australia:
The Toyota Prius, the Honda Insight and the Lexus 400h all of which, despite demand exceeding suppy, we can obtain fleet discounts off the purchase price. Please note that due to a massive demand for hybrid cars at the moment there may be a significant waiting period before your new car is delivered. The best advice is to order early – with fuel prices high and looking like staying there, chances are that the demand for hybrid cars will increase before supply does.
Toyota have also produced the Camry Hybrid in Australia in 2010.
Currently nearly every other major manufacturer in the world has serious plans to release new lines of hybrid cars Australia. Whilst not all of them are betting their future on hybrid technology, most realise that in these days of increased fuel prices and better environmental knowledge consumers are looking for alternatives to gas-guzzling petrol vehicles. In the US, more and more hybrid cars are being released including the Ford Escape Hybrid, the Honda Accord Hybrid, the Honda Insight, the Lexus RX400h and the Toyota Highlander. Many of these hybrid cars as well as other alternate fuel vehicles are expected to make their way to Australia within the next year or so.