The less polluting vehicles
The automotive industry is increasingly dedicating resources to the research of alternatives to traditional fuels. With increasing pollutant emissions and more and more cities applying traffic restrictions to improve air quality, the market of less polluting vehicles is expanding.
Do you want to know how many kinds exist and what are their main characteristics? In this gallery we compile the most widespread types of less polluting cars and explain what differences exist among them.
Its action is based on one or several electric motors powered by a series of batteries, usually lithium-ion batteries, although there are also iron ones. These batteries are plugged to external power sources -electric outlets- and depending on the model it can take between twenty minutes and eight hours to complete their charge cycle.
Electric cars have already reached the motorsport and their main disadvantage is the range: although in some exceptional case it exceeds 500 kilometers, the average is about 300 kilometers.
Where electric cars waver, hybrids stand out. The range that vehicles driven only by battery lack is largely surpassed by cars that combine batteries and internal combustion engines.
In this case, the electric motor does not drive the vehicle on its own, but serves as a supporting force for the traditional engine in certain situations. In the vast majority of cases these batteries are recharged autonomously and its major drawback is that the car continues to generate pollutant emissions, even though in a much smaller amount.
Extended-range electric vehicles
Unlike hybrids, in the extended-range electric cars the main engine is electric and the combustion engine acts as a support. This way, efficiency is optimized with respect to hybrids -less pollutant emissions- and range with respect to electric cars is doubled (600 kilometers).
Its action is based on a combustion engine that only generates the necessary energy to keep running the electric motor, which also has rechargeable batteries.
There are also cars that work thanks to the hydrogen in two variants: by combustion, where the hydrogen is burned inside an internal combustion engine obtaining the impulse; And with fuel cells, which convert hydrogen into electrical energy, which in some way turns this type of car into another kind of electric vehicle.
However, hydrogen-cell and hydrogen combustion technologies are very rare today because their maintenance is more complex; this doesn’t mean that it won’t be more used in the future since it does not pollute and its performances is comparable to those of traditional vehicles.
Alternative fuel vehicles
Finally, there are also other types of fuels that are more environmentally friendly than fossil fuels, such as ethanol, methanol, alcohol, natural gas derivatives or LPG (liquefied petroleum gas).
While polluting more than hydrogen or hybrids, their emissions are much lower than traditional vehicles and their performance is virtually the same.