- © - Mitsubishi Motors – Mitsubishi-media.co.uk

Have Plug-in Hybrids Already Had Their Day?

3w ago


It was only a few years ago that the ‘Holy Trinity’ of hypercars burst onto the scene showcasing a fusion of exotic engines and trick electronics.

The McLaren P1, LA Ferrari and Porsche 918 made hybrid power trains cool.

However, recent research by the Miles Consultancy for the BBC, has found that many owners of more mainstream plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) haven’t even unwrapped the charging cables.

The 'Holy Trinity' made electrification cool © - McLaren Automotive – mclarenautomotive.com

This is despite the UK being the biggest market for PHEVs in Europe – and means that owners are missing out on the biggest selling point of the vehicles. This being the possibility to run on electric power alone and save a load of fuel!

The report suggests that such vehicles in corporate fleets could be averaging 130 mpg, but instead they’re returning a shockingly low average of 40mpg.

It is revealed that many companies bought PHEVs because the £4,500 government grant made them cheaper to buy than normal cars.

Admittedly a rare sight! © - BMW Group – bmwgroup.com

Could it be that many owners who ended up with PHEVs in these situations simply weren’t bothered about the electric capabilities of their fancy new car?

Or perhaps they don't have access to a charging point, leaving them with little choice but to use their plug-in on engine power alone?

Undeniably, silently cruising to your local supermarket in a Mitsubishi Outlander doesn’t come with the same gravitas as prowling the sun-bleached streets of Monaco in a hypercar. However, you’d still have thought that owners of these vehicles would be keen to save some cash!

The Outlander PHEV has been extremely popular with over 40,000 sold in the UK over the last 5 years © - Mitsubishi Motors – Mitsubishi-media.co.uk

Unfortunately, the recent scrapping of the government grant isn’t going to suddenly make PHEVs cool. It’s more likely that we could be about to witness a massive decline in the number of PHEVs being sold.

With that being said, it might not be bad thing as it could encourage more people into increasingly capable fully electric cars.


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Comments (30)
  • An Mitsubishi Outlander uses 1.9 litres / 100 km, under ideal circumstances, and one day soon it may have to compete with this research car, from the Uni of NSW ,in sunny Australia , which is estimated to cost 20 Aussie cents / 100 km to run. I'd say this concept car has commercial potential. It is called the Sunswift Violet. It has solar panels fitted on to the surface, and a lithium ion battery pack. It is 5 metres long, 2.2 metres wide, 1.2 metres wide , weighs 360 kg, and seats 4 peeps, in airconditioned comfort. With it's two 1.5 kW rear wheel in hub DC synchronous motors running at a reported 98 % efficiency , it has a range of 500 km on it's battery pack, or up to 800 km with the assistance of the solar array. The 5.00-square-metre (53.7 sq ft) array consists of 318 monocrystalline silicon cells with an approximate efficiency of 22% . And it is legally road registered, in NSW, which has quite stringent roadworthiness standards.

    20 days ago
  • Perhaps manufacturers have missed the crucial point. Will people use them as intended? Perhaps circumstances don’t suit owners with busy lives. Perhaps it’s all too much mucking around or lack of infrastructure. I doubt anyone would buy a vehicle at such greater expense and not take advantage of the benefits. Perhaps the survey is skewed or just wrong. I doubt that too but are lives so complicated that you have trouble remembering to charge when you get home? Obviously, a way to go yet.

    21 days ago


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