Plugged Into the Future

Hybrids and plug-in hybrids emit less greenhouse gases, while plug-in hybrids using renewable energy as their source emit just one-third of that of the conventional vehicle.

Published: 14-Nov-2007

If there’s a vehicle that is red-hot in our globally warming world, it’s the plug-in hybrid.

The best-known hybrid, Toyota’s Prius, is now 10 years old and has sold more than 800 000 units worldwide. It is available in South Africa, where about 20 vehicles are sold on average each month.

Hybrids, so-called because they have both an electrical and conventional fuel engine, are big business now and any number of manufacturers in the United States and Europe are offering hybrid options. Every Volkswagen sold in Europe next year will come with a hybrid option. Honda intends offering a hybrid in South Africa next year.


The Vue Green Line 2-mode Hybrid SUV will be powered by GM's 3.6L V-6 gas engine, with direct injection and variable valve timing, a nickel-metal hydride battery pack and two active cooled permanent magnet motors.

The vehicle utilizes a hybrid power train based on a 1500cc, 3-cylinder turbo charged diesel engine coupled with two high-efficiency permanent-magnet electric motors.

The driver of the Zytek dual-mode diesel hybrid can choose from standard or high regenerative braking and can also select one of three driving styles: Economy, Drive or Sport.


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