As fuel prices continue to rise, alternative fuel cars will continue to be a popular topic of discussion. There are many alternative fuel cars available on the market today including ethanol based fuel produced from corn and bio-diesel vehicles that can run on the same oil used to make your French fries at McDonalds, but most of the alternative fuel cars on the market today are being marketed as hybrid cars.
Hybrid cars are alternative fuel cars, because they combine an electric power source with a fuel source to better a vehicles gas mileage. Alternative fuel cars have been around since about the same time as the invention of the car, but the market leaned heavily toward fuel only vehicles, because of the power and speed they were able produce. Previously the hybrid alternative fuel cars would only get up to speeds of around 25 miles per hour and the time it would take was around 10 minutes to get there.
The automotive industry is investing a lot of money into alternative fuel cars due to the rising costs in fuel and the increased pollution caused by common vehicles. The technology of hybrid alternative fuel cars has become very complex and each manufacturer uses the hybrid portion a little differently on each car. Some hybrid alternative fuel cars use the electric portion to provide an extra boost to the cars engine while running or when starting the car. Other hybrid alternative fuel cars use the electric portion to shut part of the gas motor down if it is not necessary to use it.
The more recent hybrid alternative fuel vehicles, such as the Honda Civic hybrid, still had drawbacks due to the minimal power they had available, but some of the newer hybrid vehicles on today’s market including the V6 Honda Accord offer power and fuel saving with a higher mile per gallon ratio.
Being able to maintain power and increase gas mileage is a large focus of the automotive industry in being able to manufacture better hybrid alternative fuel cars. The hybrid line is also carrying over into trucks. Hybrid trucks offer a slightly higher gas mileage without the loss of power and also offer an electrical source for power tools right from the truck.
The future of hybrid alternative fuel cars is unknown, but there is a high potential that the fuel source most commonly used (gasoline) will be eliminated to make room for lower costing products and more readily available products. The future hybrid alternative fuel cars will potentially be able to get even better gas mileage and power and they will reduce the pollution produced.
The starting price for alternative fuel cars is around $20,000. The demand for alternative fuel cars is high, but the production of them has not caught up with common vehicles, which has kept the price up. In the US, the government offers a tax incentive if an alternative fuel car is purchased and is also investing money into alternative fuel cars. Alternative fuel cars will continue to be a popular topic for anyone who commutes and they will continue to evolve for years to come.