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Benefits of a Hybrid Car

Bridging the gap between a conventional fuelled car and a fully electric car,  there are many benefits to leasing a hybrid car.

To help you better understand the advantages and disadvantages of leasing an hybrid, Nationwide Vehicle Contracts has put together a comprehensive guide with everything you need to know about leasing a hybrid vehicle

What is a hybrid vehicle?  

Often seen as a stepping stone between a traditionally fuelled car and a fully electric vehicle, a hybrid vehicle combines an internal combustion engine (petrol or diesel) and an electric motor to power the vehicle. Typically, in a hybrid, the electric engine powers the car at lower speeds and the gas engine powers it at higher speeds. There are three different types of hybrids available in the UK: mild hybrid (MHEV), full hybrid and plug-in hybrid (PHEV).

Current hybrid vehicles available to lease include:

Advantages of leasing a hybrid car

  1. More Environmentally Friendly

    While a hybrid vehicle may not be as environmentally friendly as a pure electric vehicle (EV), they are significantly cleaner than a traditional gasoline powered vehicle thanks to their twin powered engine. In a hybrid, the electric motor and the gasoline engine work together to reduce fuel consumption and conserve energy, making them cleaner than a petrol or diesel fuelled car.

  2. Performance and Efficiency

    Driving a hybrid is similar to driving a conventional automatic car, so there’s little compromise on performance. Most modern hybrids also offer a choice of driving modes too, ranging from eco to power, enabling the driver to choose maximum efficiency or performance depending on the driving conditions.

  3. No Range Anxiety

    Whether you opt for a Full Hybrid (also known as a self-charging hybrid) or a plug-in hybrid (PHEV), you never need to worry about range anxiety when driving a hybrid vehicle. Unlike an electric car which needs electricity to run, if you run out of electric power in a hybrid vehicle, the internal combustion engine kicks in, meaning you’ll never be stranded whilst looking for a charge point.

  4. Tax Incentives

    Whilst tax incentives for hybrid vehicles, particularly PHEVs, aren’t as good as they used to be, hybrid vehicles still offer significant tax benefits, especially for company car drivers. Company car drivers still pay less Benefit-In-Kind (BIK) tax than drivers of petrol or diesel cars and vehicles emitting less than 75g/km also qualify for London congestion charge exemption.

  5. Smoother, Quieter Drive

    When driving in electric mode, hybrid vehicles offer a quieter, often smoother drive than their conventional petrol or diesel counterparts. At lower speeds, particularly when driving around towns or in busy cities, engine noise is almost entirely eliminated, making for an all-round more peaceful environment, for both driver and passengers.

Other advantages of leasing a hybrid car include:

  • A hybrid car requires less fuel to run which means less emissions and less dependence on fossil fuel, which in turn helps to reduce the price of gasoline in the domestic market.
  • Many hybrid vehicles are constructed using lightweight materials, making them smaller and lighter than their full-weight counterparts, helping to save even more energy.
  • With more and more drivers turning towards hybrid cars, green vehicles are remain high in demand on the used car market, commanding higher than average resale values.
  • Most hybrid vehicles use regenerative braking to harvest energy lost during braking to recharge the battery, eliminating the need to stop periodically to recharge on longer journeys.

Disadvantages of leasing a hybrid car

  1. Higher Purchase Price

    Although the gap is narrowing, hybrids cars can be more expensive to buy or lease than a regular diesel or petrol vehicle thanks to their technology. Purchase prices for hybrid cars can be around 20% higher than for their non-hybrid petrol and diesel equivalents, although some of this cost can be offset with lower running costs and tax exemptions.

  2. Less Agile

    The location of the battery pack in a hybrid car can often result in less-than-ideal weight distribution in the vehicle, which in turn, can affect handling. As such, a hybrid car can sometimes feel less agile on the road than a non-hybrid version with drivers often feeling the additional weight through the steering wheel. This is why many hybrids are suited for city driving more than speed and acceleration.

  3. Higher Maintenance Costs

    With both an internal combustion engine and an electric motor to maintain, hybrid vehicles generally cost more to repair than that of a petrol or diesel fuelled vehicle. In addition to higher maintenance costs, not all garages are also equipped to service or repair a hybrid car due to the technology found in the vehicle so drivers may have to visit their local dealership to have the vehicle serviced.

  4. Limited Electric Range

    For a hybrid vehicle to truly be cost efficient, the vehicle needs to run in electric mode whenever possible to reduce fuel consumption. While most hybrids can achieve this when driving at low speeds around town, the electric range on many hybrids is still limited, with most PHEVs achieving an electric range of 30-35 miles before needing to be recharged and many Full Hybrids running on electric power for only just a few miles at relatively low speeds.

  5. Longer Lead Times

    While almost every manufacturer now offers a hybrid version in their model line-up, lead times for hybrid vehicles can be significantly longer than their petrol or diesel counterparts. Delivery times for PHEV models can range from 10 weeks to six months, with lead times set to increase further as demand for hybrid increases.

Other disadvantages of leasing a hybrid car include:

  • The number of discounts and tax incentives on hybrid vehicles has reduced significantly over the past few years, making hybrids more expensive to purchase than they once were.
  • The lack of noise when running in pure electric mode, particularly when accelerating from standing, can be disconcerting for some drivers who think the engine has cut out.
  • Some road safety groups believe lack of engine noise could inadvertently lead to increase in road traffic accidents with pedestrians and other road users.
  • Concerns in regards to the recycling of used hybrid batteries has raised some ecological questions from eco-friendly groups, particularly as demand for hybrid vehicles increases.

Want to know more about electric or hybrid car leasing?

View our ever-growing library of EV guides, check out our latest hybrid car leasing offers or give one of our specialists a call on 0345 811 9595.

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