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For years seen as the perfect solution for easing people into the upcoming electric car future, plug-in hybrid (PHEV) cars are not used as they should. That results in extraordinary differences in fuel economy and emissions between real-life driving and laboratory tests.
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According to German researchers, PHEVs use more fossil fuels and emit up to four times more carbon dioxide in the real world, and it all comes down to drivers not using the cars’ electric motors as much as they should.

A team of researchers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research analyzed data on the real-world fuel economy and distance traveled annually of more than 100,000 PHEVs driven in the U.S., Canada, China, Germany, the Netherlands, and Norway.

The team found that the carbon dioxide emissions of plug-in hybrids averaged between 50 and 300 grams of CO2 per km, which is up to four times higher than the emissions seen in laboratory test cycles—both WLTP and NEDC, its European predecessor.

Apparently, the official assumptions regarding distance driven on a daily basis and battery charging using external sources was overly optimistic, with most drivers almost never charging their cars from an electrical outlet and depleting their batteries a lot sooner.

As you know, plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) usually combine an internal combustion engine (ICE) with at least one electric motor, which sources its power from an onboard battery that can be charged either during driving or via an external charging outlet.

In theory, they should be the best of both worlds, using much less fuel than a regular ICE-powered car and having a much longer range than a fully electric car.

Researchers say that because most PHEV drivers almost never charge their cars during their daily routine, most of the time, they run in either hybrid or even full ICE mode, rendering them a lot more inefficient than they could be.

The study’s conclusion was not against the proliferation of PHEVs but for introducing better ways of encouraging drivers of such cars to charge them from external sources more, thus fully benefitting from their intended purpose.
 

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If I'm not mistaken isn't this what mbukukanyau drives in that Ford Fusion? If it is, he's already stated that in posts here that the thing hasn't the range and is losing range as it gets older as well.
 

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If I'm not mistaken isn't this what mbukukanyau drives in that Ford Fusion? If it is, he's already stated that in posts here that the thing hasn't the range and is losing range as it gets older as well.
That means people are not using their vehicles as it was ment to be
 

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They don't work as advertized because as soon as you get on 'em, the engine comes on!
Volt/ELR is one PHEV that was done right, because it's a true EREV.
 

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The ONLY way to make real-world results be the same as test results is to take ALL thinking out of the hands of the consumers. Of course, then they won't like the vehicles and blame the manufacturers (instead of politicians) because the vehicles don't have any power, don't have enough range, or take too long to charge.

BTW, our Gen 2 Volt performs magnificently.
 

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They don't work as advertized because as soon as you get on 'em, the engine comes on!
Volt/ELR is one PHEV that was done right, because it's a true EREV.
BUT same issue as the other plug in hybrids and that USERS NOT PLUGGING in often enough
IMHO all plug in hybrids OR "erev" cars make little sense as you are buying 2 complete power trains VS something like the Prius that from the design stage was efficient in its ONE operating state and has a "low" incremental cost due to the small batteries
 

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I have a 2106 Chevy Volt and I am waving the BS flag. About 85% of my driving is electric (zero tailpipe emissions). I highly doubt the other 15% makes up for ANY ICE driven vehicle.

Did this German research team find any problems with diesels that had emissions test-cheating software?
 

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If I'm not mistaken isn't this what mbukukanyau drives in that Ford Fusion? If it is, he's already stated that in posts here that the thing hasn't the range and is losing range as it gets older as well.
It returned to previous levels, I believe it was weather/seasonality related.

The Fusion Energi would suit me well, my round trip is about 20 miles.
(When I go to work and when my daughter goes to school)

That means people are not using their vehicles as it was ment to be
Now do a study of anyone with a 4 Cylinder Turbo engine and see how they are doing compared to the window sticker..................



I have a 2106 Chevy Volt and I am waving the BS flag. About 85% of my driving is electric (zero tailpipe emissions). I highly doubt the other 15% makes up for ANY ICE driven vehicle.

Did this German research team find any problems with diesels that had emissions test-cheating software?
As stated in a previous post, the Volt is the exception, but it is no-longer in production, so basically irrelevant.
 

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BUT same issue as the other plug in hybrids and that USERS NOT PLUGGING in often enough
Volt/ELR owners don't seem to have this issue because it was never marketed as a hybrid.
They seem to get the whole "plug it in at night" thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Volt/ELR owners don't seem to have this issue because it was never marketed as a hybrid.
They seem to get the whole "plug it in at night" thing.
Take a success story and discontinue it. That is pure genius.
 
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Take a success story and discontinue it. That is pure genius.
Typical GM. They leave us wanting, then after lackluster attempts at upgrading or such etc., etc. they cancel something. Or... right after they finally get it right. :( :(
 

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IMO, PHEVs make very little sense except as a way for automakers to qualify for various EV incentives without having to invest in bespoke EV platforms.
 
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1) Most cars/things don't perform the same in the real world as in labratories.

2) People are lazy, so make it easy - figure out wireless charging. People could just pull in to their garage - over a charting pad and in the morning its ready to go. You have to make it as easy as possible for the masses, or they won't do it. Don't blame the car for being a plug in hybrid if its not being plugged in!!
 

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IMO, PHEVs make very little sense except as a way for automakers to qualify for various EV incentives without having to invest in bespoke EV platforms.
Exactly...and if you're not using them as they should be used i.e. plugging it in, you just end up with an inefficient underpowered & overweight ICE car w/ none of the benefits from the plugin portion of the drivetrain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Successfully implemented technology, however, it wasn't successful in the marketplace.
It's not the Volt's fault. GM's incredibly incompetent pathetic "marketing" department is to blame here. Too bad nobody at the top has figured out what a bunch of utter bozos their marketing arm is. For three billion odd bucks, you should be able to do better than this.

Real life is so real
Yes, isn't it? What an inconvenient truth.
 
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Successfully implemented technology, however, it wasn't successful in the marketplace.
Because small, low to the ground cars is what every EV owner wants?

Exactly...and if you're not using them as they should be used i.e. plugging it in, you just end up with an inefficient underpowered & overweight ICE car w/ none of the benefits from the plugin portion of the drivetrain.
The beauty of the Volt was zero range anxiety or delays, waits to "recharge" just use gas!
 

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Because small, low to the ground cars is what every EV owner wants?



The beauty of the Volt was zero range anxiety or delays, waits to "recharge" just use gas!
Don't need to sell me on it. If they were still making it, I would've strongly considered a Volt when I bought my car last fall. That's right - a Volt vs. a CT4-V, two very unlike cars!

If I still had a daily, 90 mile round trip commute I'd be in the Volt, even if used. But even my current job is 45 miles round trip, enough to make me still think about the Volt. But now, looks like I'm never going back to the office 5 days a week, might only be one day a week - mpg's are taking a backseat to performance!
 

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IMO, PHEVs make very little sense except as a way for automakers to qualify for various EV incentives without having to invest in bespoke EV platforms.
I think they're an interesting bridge product. If you can go 20 miles on EV, that's more than enough for urban driving. And you still have the added comfort of an ICE for more traditional driving.
Yes. It's not for everyone. And the additional cost may not be worth it for most. But I do think it makes sense.
 
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