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Hybrid Drive (For All) 1

Hybrid drive - generally

I read in the newspaper today, that the sale of hybrid cars is picking up, whereby the sale of purely electric cars is still stagnating. I'm not surprised. Actually, one could say, that the sales share of hybrids is 100 percent because in fact, they're all hybrids.

Do you start your car engine by hand? No, of course not. For nearly 100 years now the electric starter has been used. In addition, ones also needs a battery, later the generator was introduced so that we didn't have to take it out every time it had to be recharged. As you can see, every vehicle has a second energy converter on board.

Now of course, each and every manufacturer cannot describe all their models as hybrids. Then nobody would buy the 'genuine' hybrids. What they do is, they call it 'start-stop-automatic', which actually means a small step in the direction of the hybrid. The engine cuts and the starter engages itself, so that the next engine-start doesn't become too frantic.

One doesn't have to be a prophet to foresee the next steps. One day the starter will be permanently linked with the engine. Perhaps this will be done by means of a freewheel or it may rise to the occasion and also take over the job of the generator, after all, the V-belt up front doesn't have that much space anyway.

Indeed, why should one even start the combustion engine to pull off in the first place? The enhanced starter-motor could take care of that as well. Then, hopefully, we could be rid of the idling once and for all, which looked at mathematically, causes the consumption to rise incredibly, the respective pollutant emission as well.

In the meantime the battery's capacity has also been somewhat increased. There's no reason why our good old lead-acid battery can't be used, e.g., to keep the expenses down. There are still suppliers of purely electric cars, who very economically fit their vehicles out with this type of battery, indeed at the expense of them being heavier and their having a lower range.

Our possibilities increase with the efficiency of the battery, and the hopefully, falling battery prices. We will decrease the size of the combustion engine (downsizing). Not so that a turbo-charger can be installed. The engine will be really made smaller, because, for acceleration, we'll now have help from the strengthened starter motor. The maximum speed of our cars can, even now, hardly be exploited, so a few kilowatts less won't make that much of a difference.

So, now we've achieved our second savings. In addition, there is now also more storage for the recuperation available. From now on, anything is imaginable, always assuming that the battery is larger and more reasonable. We drive under electric power for a short distance, till we get to the main road, and besides, in winter we also avoid the wear and tear suffered by our engines.

At this point, the plug-in system gradually becomes interesting. No, not so that we can drive a further 50 kilometers using electricity. It will still take some time before the batteries get cheaper. However, the whole car, the interior and the engine, could be pre-heated in winter. That would be good for the engine and it would mean yet another savings. Perhaps it could be done wireless and controlled by a Smartphone-Application.

The (genuine) electro-drive, although slowly and dependent on the production conditions of the battery, will come. Have a look at the production of the electro-Smart in the video below. A great deal of manual work, almost like the UNIMOG production. This cannot be financially viable. Compared with this, the production facilities of our current cars give the impression of being almost deserted. Nevertheless, through the hybrid, the electro-car does have a chance.

In the above mentioned newspaper article, it says that Porsche is leading the race, 5% in 2011 and in 2012, probably 10% hybrid sales. This doesn't surprise me at all, Porsche is actually the manufacturer with the biggest problems for the future. How else will they be able to get their CO2-portion below the legal limits, when they only have premium cars on offer?

They have two helping hands. Firstly VW, who will indeed be taking over Porsche from the 1st of August 2012, although there are still several court-actions pending, concerning matters relating to investments. Apparently through the take-over, a posibility has been found to get round the paying of taxes which are due.

The second helping hand is the (European) legislation, which does not take the energy required to charge the batteries into consideration when determining the CO2-values. Don't be surprised, when in the future, Porsche, despite their presumably increasing engine performance, has less and less CO2-emission. It will be interesting to see what happens, when with an increased battery capacity, the 2 liters/100 kms limit is undercut.

One should always ask oneself, how high the CO2-emission is on the second hundred kilometers. There is however, still another helping hand, the German legislation. No road tax is calculated for the performance of electro-motors, in this case, the Porsche, at least in this respect, could perhaps become a bit more reasonable.

No, even the naivest of us all would not believe that a Porsche could have a consumption of under 2 liters/100 kms. Indeed, we still have some time to go until then, and should you not be able to afford a hybrid car, don't be too upset, because actually, they're all hybrids, except of course, the purely electric vehicles. 06/12

Video about the manufacturing of an E-Mobile

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