Toyota’s Plug-in Hybrid Pounds Diesels in London

Testing

Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles are staking their claim as the world's preeminent leaders in city cars.

A report out of London, England has found that Toyota Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles have average fuel consumption in the city 27 percent better than any equivalent diesel car. The data was collected over a one-year period and the results are pretty captivating. In fact, they foreshadow a possible future of cities run solely on electric cars. The results from the study show that the average distance driven at a single time was 7.3 miles.

59 percent of the trips covered somewhere between 3.1 and 12.4 miles. They traveled those distances at an average speed of 17.7mph with 69 percent of those trips going less than 18.6mph. The aforementioned fuel consumption was 27 percent better than any equivalent diesel engine and the average recharging time only lasted 72 minutes. One of the reasons for the slow speeds and short distances traveled were that these cars were based in heavily congested London. The Plug-ins can run about 12.4 miles in pure EV mode, making them truly efficient for city driving.

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The car's technology is quite impressive, as it can hit its top speed of 62mph without the aid of its gasoline-equipped engine. Toyota leased a group of 20 Plug-ins to local London businesses and the cars have been in operation for about three years. Charging infrastructure is already in place in London, which makes owning or operating Plug-ins all the more easier. This means that you can charge in other places than just your garage overnight, such as the street corner or at a plug-in station by your office. The cars are based on Toyota's third generation Prius.

The Plug-ins run on an advanced lithium-ion battery. The battery enables the cars to run at higher speeds and over longer distances on only electric power. The Plug-ins have demonstrated better fuel efficiency and put out lower emissions over diesels and all other transport cars. On the back of this study, it would appear that the time is now for the world's largest and busiest cities to make the transition to zero emissions.

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