The Best Diesel Electric Hybrid Car: A Comparison Guide

July 2, 2012

Although a diesel electric hybrid car is not as common as a standard gasoline-powered engine hybrid vehicle, there are nonetheless diesel engine cars being powered alternatively by electrical energy as well. The diesel electric efficiency rating for these vehicles is oftentimes slightly better than that of a standard engine hybrid vehicle. However, many diesel electric hybrid cars are expensive foreign vehicles that are not within the price range of many consumers. Therefore, before purchasing a diesel electric hybrid car and making a significant investment, it is worthwhile to compare the existing cars of this type.

Generally, diesel hybrid electric engines provide higher mileage per gallon ratings because of the increased power and efficiency of the diesel component, in particular for its ability to maintain itself and resist damage when operating for long periods of time without rest.

Peugeot 307 and 308
These were two of the first diesel hybrid electric vehicles to hit the market. As such, they achieved the desired goal of excellent mileage ratings. However, they also suffered from design flaws that compromised their reliability and safety. As a result, these two vehicles are generally considered to be less than desirable options for a diesel electric hybrid vehicle.

Citroën C4 Hybride HDi
This vehicle is a highly rated diesel electric hybrid car. It was hailed as a return to the unconventional design of Citroën from a generation ago, and the car's reliability and mileage ratings are high. It also makes use of the most recent technological advances and accessories. Certain models feature a detection system that alerts you if you accidentally swerves slightly out of your lane. It also features a number of handless operations that can be executed while driving in order to reduce the potential for accidents and distractions. Generally, this vehicle is held to be an excellent choice of diesel hybrid electric car.

Additional Vehicles
Several automobile manufacturers, including Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz, have announced plans to unveil diesel power hybrid vehicles in the next months and years. The technology of diesel hybrid cars is constantly being modified and improved upon. As a result, many manufacturers have yet to perfect a vehicle of this type, and the selection at the moment is limited. Prototypes of these vehicles show that they may achieve mpg ratings of up to 120 miles per gallon, which is roughly 4 times the standard mileage rating of a non-hybrid passenger car in the United States.

Many of these upcoming diesel hybrid vehicles will only be available in Europe initially, as they are manufactured by European companies. The delay for these particular cars to reach the U.S. market may be increased by months or even years, depending upon the manufacturer and the vehicle.

Advantages and Disadvantages Electric Diesel Hybrid Vehicles

There are a couple of advantages and disadvantages respectively to electric diesel hybrid vehicles.

Advantages

  • Excellent mileage rating.Perhaps the single strongest advantage of electric diesel hybrid cars is their significant mileage rating boost, even over other hybrids. Electric diesel hybrids are designed to reach mpg ratings of up to 120, which is about 4 times the average mileage rating of a standard, non-electric passenger car. As such, these cars are extremely fuel efficient and can operate on a minimum quantity of diesel fuel. This helps to keep the air clean and to keep you from spending a good deal of money of fuel itself
  • Environmentally friendly. In comparison with standard diesel vehicles, a hybrid electric car is dramatically cleaner. These vehicles pollute much less than their diesel counterparts. This particular point is neutral, however, because other hybrid vehicles that operate on a mixture of electrical power and standard gasoline oftentimes pollute even less than electric diesel hybrid cars. For this reason, electric diesel hybrids are an improvement over regular cars, but still fall short of some other types of hybrids in the bid to be the most environmentally friendly

Disadvantages

  • Limited availability.Diesel electric hybrids suffer the disadvantage of not being readily available. One reason for this is that the technology behind these vehicles is so new that many car manufacturers are still in the design stages of releasing hybrids of this type. In other cases, only a limited number of hybrid cars were manufactured at once, making them very uncommon
  • High cost. The single biggest disadvantage of these vehicles is their high cost. Most diesel vehicles in the United States are foreign-made cars that are often more expensive than regular gasoline vehicles, and hybrids that run on diesel are no exception. Another reason for this is due to the limited availability of many of these cars, as listed above. Hybrid cars that run on both diesel and electric power are amongst the most expensive passenger vehicles on the market today. Many of them do come with a wide range of luxury amenities, however

How to Find a Bio-Diesel Hybrid Online

Since diesel hybrid vehicles are not yet available in the U.S., you need to visit Europe or Japan to purchase one. You can purchase diesel hybrid vehicles overseas and have them shipped to the United States. However, you need to make sure that the vehicle is converted properly before trying to register the vehicle in your home state. You need to have the speedometer changed from the metric system to the U.S. system of miles per hour. Also, you need to make sure that the vehicle is correctly converted so that it meets the emission standards for your state.

Diesel Hybrid Vehicles in Europe
Manufacturers like Volkswagen have been producing diesel hybrid vehicles for sale in Europe for a few years. Currently, Volkswagen sells the Golf, Jetta and Polo with diesel hybrid engine options. However, Volkswagen has yet to announce plans to release a diesel hybrid vehicle for sale in the United States.

Other manufacturers like Peugeot and Volvo are also planning to release hybrid vehicles in the very near future. There are even rumors that Volvo may release a diesel hybrid vehicle for sale in the US as soon as 2012. However, other manufacturers have promised similar hybrid vehicle releases in the past and have not delivered.

Diesel Hybrid Vehicles in Asia
All three of the major Japanese car manufacturers, Honda, Nissan and Toyota have diesel hybrid vehicles available for sale in Japan--albeit on a very limited basis. You can also visit Japan to purchase vehicles for export United States.

Considerations before Buying a Vehicle Overseas

If you wish to purchase a diesel hybrid vehicle overseas, there are a few things you should consider. It costs a great deal of money to have a vehicle shipped overseas. Depending on where you live, and where you have the vehicle shipped from, shipping costs for a new vehicle can range between $3000 and $10,000.

You also want to consider that you may have trouble finding car insurance on a vehicle that is not available for sale in the United States. You may wind up having to purchase a custom or classic car insurance policy, which usually costs a lot more money.

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