Eco-friendliness, which has recently emerged as one of the most important keywords, is a big topic in the automobile industry. Nowadays, the word eco-friendly cannot be left out in the global automobile market. If you don’t yet have your own car, there are probably many people who are considering an eco-friendly car as their first car. When you look into eco-friendly Vehicle, the variety is wider and more diverse than you think, making it difficult to choose. So, we have neatly organized the types of eco-friendly cars, as well as the pros and cons of each. ‘Eco-friendly cars A to Z’
Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV)
A Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) refers to a car equipped with both an engine and a drive motor. Hybrid electric vehicles use only electricity from the engine’s generator and regenerative braking system, so there is no need to charge external electric energy.
It can be used conveniently without being tied to the electric vehicle charging infrastructure. They have the advantage of being environmentally friendly because they are more fuel efficient than internal combustion engine vehicles and produce less exhaust gases.
The downside is that there are no exhaust gas emissions at all. Hybrid electric vehicles can be seen as a transitional model to move from the era of internal combustion engine cars to the era of eco-friendly cars.
Plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV)
A plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) refers to a car equipped with both an engine and a drive motor, like a hybrid electric vehicle. The difference from hybrid electric vehicles is that the high-voltage battery has a larger capacity and is equipped with a system for charging external electricity.
By increasing the capacity of the high-voltage battery, the distance that can be driven solely on electric energy is longer than that of a hybrid electric vehicle. Depending on how the driver operates, exhaust gas emissions can be further reduced. One of the advantages is that it is equipped with a regenerative braking system, so it is more fuel efficient than an internal combustion engine vehicle. Additionally, electric charging is possible at a charging station, so the vehicle can be driven using only electric energy. If charging is difficult, it can be driven with the engine.
The downside is that if you want to use a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle like a conventional electric car, you have to recharge it every day.
Electric Vehicle (EV)
An electric vehicle (EV) refers to a car that runs solely on electrical energy stored in a high-voltage battery. Overseas, it is sometimes referred to as a battery electric vehicle (BEV). In other words, it is a car that does not emit exhaust gases. Recently, as exhaust gas regulations have become stricter around the world, they have been attracting attention as eco-friendly cars.
The biggest advantage of electric vehicles (EVs) is that they do not emit exhaust gases because they do not use any fossil fuels. Since it is driven by a motor without an engine, there is almost no noise or vibration. Acceleration performance is excellent at low to medium speeds, and the battery is placed widely on the bottom of the car body, so the center of gravity is low and the turning ability is excellent. Acceleration and deceleration safety is also good.
In the case of electric vehicles (EVs), charging infrastructure is most important because they use only electric energy without fossil fuels. Although there are more electric vehicle charging stations than before, they are still not enough to drive safely. When traveling on a local business trip or driving a long distance, it is better to allow more time for battery charging.
Hydrogen Electric Vehicle (FCEV, Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle)
A hydrogen electric vehicle (FCEV, Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle), like an electric vehicle, refers to a vehicle that runs on a motor powered by electrical energy. The difference from electric vehicles (EVs) is that hydrogen electric vehicles do not receive electrical energy from outside, but produce electrical energy directly within the vehicle body through a fuel cell system. The fuel cell system produces electrical energy through an electrochemical reaction between hydrogen supplied from a hydrogen tank and oxygen captured from outside air.
Because the power source of hydrogen electric vehicles is electrical energy, like electric vehicles, they do not emit exhaust gases when driving. Electrical energy is also produced by combining hydrogen and oxygen, so only pure water is released as a by-product. In the process of extracting oxygen from the outside air, foreign substances are removed through an air purification system and the air is used and then discharged, thereby purifying the atmosphere. Thanks to this, hydrogen electric vehicles are nicknamed ‘running air purifiers.’
In addition to oxygen extracted from external sources, hydrogen must be recharged directly. The downside is that the driving distance varies depending on the hydrogen tank capacity, and the hydrogen charging infrastructure is not yet sufficient. Convenience may increase if hydrogen charging infrastructure is expanded to popularize hydrogen electric vehicles, which are even nicknamed running air purifiers.
The government provides vehicle purchase subsidies and various benefits when purchasing an eco-friendly car. There are differences depending on the vehicle type and each local government, and subsidies mainly include national subsidies and local government subsidies. In addition to the benefits upon purchase, buyers of eco-friendly cars can receive various driving incentives, such as discounts on congestion tolls, discounts on public parking fees, and highway toll reductions. It is said that tax reduction benefits such as individual consumption tax, education tax, and automobile acquisition tax reduction are also granted.