History Of Hybrid Cars

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The beginning of hybrid cars goes back to the 20th century. The Paris Exposition of 1900 included the Lohner-Porsche Elektromobil which is the first ever hybrid car. The inventor of the Lohner-Porsche Elektromobil was a 23 year old engineer named Ferdinand Porsche. Porsche is known today for his Volkswagen cars and for the famous sport cars designed by his son. He created a vehicle that could travel 38 miles on electricity alone. Porsche partnered with Jacob Lohner who wanted to develop motorcars that had incorporated coaches. The gas-powered cars at that time were very noisy and difficult to start. Porsche created battery-powered electric motors and put them in the front-wheel hubs to produce a front-wheel drive car. He also added an internal combustion gasoline engine so the batteries in the car could be charged. Sadly, the Lohner-Porsche could only reach up to 35 miles an hour. The idea of hybrid cars decreased during the years of growth in the modern automobile industry. This period brought a national highway system in the United States and gasoline was inexpensive. The concerns with auto emissions brought back the idea of hybrid cars. C. Russell Feldman, one of the founders of Motorola, decided to explore the possibilities of hybrid cars again. He contacted an electrical engineer named Victor Wouk to see if a hybrid car could work in society. Wouk found out that the batteries in the hybrid cars did not have the energy to produce a lot of speed and range. In the 1960’s, Wouk combined the low-emissions benefit of an electric car with the power and range of a gasoline engine to create a hybrid car. To make his hybrid car ideas real, Victor Wouk and his partner Charles Rosen formed the company called the Petro-E...

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...otor. The Audi Duo was not a success and was discontinued soon after. Then Honda released the two-door Insight which was the first ever hybrid car to hit the mass market in the United States. The Insight received an EPA mileage reading of 61 mpg city and a 70 mpg highway. Following up the Honda Insight, Toyota released the Toyota Prius which was the first ever hybrid four-door sedan in the United States. In 2002, Honda produced the Honda Civic Hybrid that is identical to the conventional Civic. Toyota also introduced the Toyota Prius II. It won the 2004 Car of the Year from the Motor Trend Magazine and the North American Auto Show. Toyota produced between 36,000 to 47,000 Toyota Prius II in the United States. As the years have gone by, the popularity of the hybrid cars have gone up and more people are deciding to buy a hybrid car than a gasoline car.
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