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Hybrid Cars Glossary and Terms



Ever wonder what is a HEV or a PHEV! Here are some of the commonly used relevant terms and definitions pertaining to hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles.




Alternate Fuel Vehicle - A vehicle powered by fuel other than gasoline or diesel. Examples of alternative fuels are electricity, hydrogen, and CNG.



Auto Stop - The process in which the internal combustion engine automatically turn off when the car is stopped or slowed to a speed of 20 mph or less, this result in significant fuel saving in the hybrid vehicles.



Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicles - AT-PZEV vehicles are 90% cleaner than the average new car and have near-zero evaporative emissions. The hybrid must also have a 15 year/150,000 mile warranty on the emission control systems.




Auto Stop

The technology in which the internal combustion engine automatically turn off when the car is stopped or slowed to a speed of 20 mph or less, this result in significant fuel saving in the hybrid vehicles.



Belt Alternator Starter - Originally developed by GM as a mild hybrid system. It operates similar to the "start-stop" system used in the Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid in that it shuts down the engine when the vehicle comes to a stop and instantly restarts it when the accelerator is pressed.



Battery Electric Vehicle - An EV powered by electricity stored in batteries.



California Air Resources Board - A governmental body that sets clean air standards.



Compressed Natural Gas - Natural gas is primarily methane (CH4). To serve as a vehicle fuel, it must be stored at high pressure (i.e. compressed) to get sufficient amounts in a tank.



Draft Assisted Forced Autostop



E85 refer to a blend of 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline by volume.



Engine Control Unit - Also known as Engine Management Systems (EMS), is an computer device in the internal combustion engine to gather multitude of sensors in the engine and uses the information to control the ignition systems of the engine.



Environmental Protection Agency



Electric Vehicle - Define vehicles that use only electric as power source. Battery EVs store electric power in batteries. Hybrid EVs supplement battery storage with electricity generated from another fuel (e.g. gasoline or diesel ICE). Fuel cell EVs supply electricity to the motor from a fuel cell.


Evaporative emissions

A process in which emissions that escape when gasoline evaporates, generally from the fuel tank, or other parts of the fuel delivery system.



Fuel Cell Vehicles



Flexible Fuel Vehicle - A vehicle that can run on a variety of fuels.


Forced Auto Stop

A fuel saving technique in hybrid vehicles to shut down the engine while the vehicle is still motion.


Fuel-cell vehicle

An electric vehicle which relies on fuel cell to power the motor.



Hybrid Electric Vehicle - A vehicle that combines conventional power production (e.g. an ICE) and an electric motor.



Toyota's "Hybrid Synergy Drive" system.


Hybrid vehicle

A vehicle that combines 2 or more power source for its engine.



hypermiler is someone who regularly beats the EPA fuel economy estimates for a particular vehicle.



Internal Combustion Engine - An engine that burns fuel inside a reaction chamber to create pressure inside the chamber that is converted into rotary motion.



Honda?s ?Integrated Motor Assist? system.



Low Emission Vehicle - Refers to new cars sold after 2004 in California will have at least a LEV or better emissions rating.



Lithium Ion - A battery technology


Mild Hybrid

Refers to hybrid vehicles that do not meet all criteria for a full hybrid.



Nickel Metal Hydride - a battery technology.


P & G

A driving technique that involves accelerating (Pulse) to a certain speed, then gliding down to a lower speed before re-accelerating back to a higher speed.



Lead Acid - A battery technology.



Proton Exchange Membrane - A type of fuel cell.



Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle - Hybrid vehicles with electrical battery system that can be recharge from an household outlet (either US 120V or 220V).



Partial Zero Emissions Vehicles - Currently the EPA's second cleanest rating (behind AT-PZEV) attainable in a vehicle which uses an internal combustion engine. A PZEV-rated vehicle is 90% cleaner than the average new car and also has near-zero evaporative emissions.


Regenerative Braking

The process by which hybrid cars recapture energy into a battery that would otherwise be lost in the form of heat, energy is regenerated by the vehicle each time you hit the brakes by recapturing the energy usually dispersed as heat by the brakes



Acronym for ?State of Charge?.



Super Ultra Low Emission Vehicle - A SULEV-rated vehicle is 90% cleaner than the average new 2003 model year car.



Acronym for ?Traction Control System?. Also may refer as TRAC.



Acronym for ?Traction Control System?. Also may refer as TCS.



Ultra Low Emission Vehicle - A ULEV-rated vehicle is 50% cleaner than the average new 2003 model year car.



Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management - Available on the Toyota HH, TCH and Lexus RXh models.



Zero Emission Vehicles - A ZEV-rated vehicle is 98% cleaner than the average new 2003 model year car.  These include battery electric vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.


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