Those of us who own hybrid cars love them, but in the back of our minds there’s always the thought that the battery will need to be replaced. And replacing a hybrid car battery can be fairly expensive, costing from $3000 to $4,000 in the United States. Typically, hybrid car batteries come with an eight year/100,000 mile warranty. But their lifespan can be as short as six years.
Batteries in hybrid cars help them achieve 20-35% better fuel economy than those powered strictly by gasoline. When the car’s on the road, the transition between hybrid batteries and fuel systems is smooth, so the driver notices little if any difference. And when the brakes are applied, part of the energy produced is charged back into the battery.
Hybrid car batteries also work to the benefit of the environment by helping to reduce the emissions of the vehicle by 25-35% on average.
In 2012, roughly 4.5 million vehicles with hybrid car batteries were sold worldwide, with 2.18 million of them purchased in the United States.
It wasn’t all that many years ago that the use of electric batteries for cars seemed impractical. But as new hybrid technology was developed, it became feasible to augment the standard internal combustion engine in new ways that both saved on fuel cost and helped vehicle manufacturers to meet new state and federal emissions requirements.
The 2000 Honda Insight was the most efficient United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certified gasoline-fueled vehicle sold. Its highway rating was 61 miles per US gallon, and it had a combined city/highway rating of 53 miles per US gallon. And the current Honda Civic Hybrid is rated at 44 miles per gallon.
Buyers spend 15-25% more to purchase hybrid vehicles, but if they keep them for long enough they will recoup the difference several times over. Some insurance companies offer discounts for hybrids because they’re statistically less likely to be involved in accidents. And tax incentives are available that can save the buyer as much as $3400.