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What Is A Self-Charging Hybrid?

2019 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid
“She left me for a Hybrid. I didn’t even hear him coming.”
It’s a quote from the movie ‘Planes: Fire & Rescue’ that tends to float over my son’s head for humour, but I laugh every single time I hear it, and trust me, I hear it a lot.
In my role with Heffner Toyota, I’ve driven my share of hybrids and still can’t believe how quiet they really are. So much so, when I start one up, I still need to confirm the engine is running by looking for the “ready” signal that appears on the dash.
The lineup of hybrids with Toyota are classified as “Self-Charging” hybrids which basically means you don’t have to plug them in to charge them up, they charge while you drive. They’re a gas engine with electric power.
The electric engine powers the vehicle at slower speeds, while the gas kicks in and helps out at higher speeds. The below video demonstrates the concept using a tandem bike. The electric is always working, but the gas assists when additional power is required.

Self-charging hybrids are extremely beneficial if the majority of your driving is done in cities or towns. You’ll discover that a good portion of your commute will be on battery power alone.  Same goes for running errands and other daily tasks. Not only will you save on fuel costs, but you’ll also be doing your part to help save the environment by reducing your carbon footprint. The hybrid powertrain is up to 70% cleaner than conventional gas engines.
You’ll also discover that hybrids are extremely relaxing to drive thanks to their automatic gearboxes that were designed to be silent and smooth. Again, the overall quietness of hybrids are truly unbelievable, until you drive one.
One myth surrounding hybrids is that they lack power. But in fact, the 2019 RAV4 XSE hybrid offers the most power of the entire RAV4 lineup. It has greater horsepower, faster acceleration and sport-tuned suspension. It really is the perfect mix of performance and efficiency.
Look for the RAV4 XSE hybrid at Heffner Toyota sometime in April. Meanwhile, the 2020 Corolla hybrid, with 121 horsepower of responsive performance, is expected to arrive in May.
And as always, safety comes standard with RAV4 and Corolla hybrids, as both feature Toyota Safety Sense 2.0.
For more in depth information on hybrids, or any of the other models at Heffner Toyota, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our Product Advisors to have your questions answered.
Now, back to the movie.