The eco car industry includes hybrids, biodiesel vehicles, ethanol vehicles, hydrogen fuel cell powered electric vehicles, battery-powered electric cars, and other alternative fuel vehicles. Of all the vehicles in the eco car industry, the hybrid vehicle is the most popular and well known. A hybrid vehicle still uses traditional gasoline or diesel fuel, but includes a secondary energy source in the form of batteries. When the vehicle stops, the batteries catch the energy. Hybrids can average 60 miles a gallon on the highway, and they require less fossil fuels to run. Hybrids have also been on the market longer than other eco cars.
Biodiesel vehicles are also part of the eco car industry. Biodiesel is a biomass fuel that is a mixture of vegetable oils and regular diesel fuel. Because vegetable oil as well as diesel fuel is used, there are less harmful carbons released into the air when the mixture is burned. This fuel is also fairly inexpensive. Many vehicles can run on biodiesel, and the price of these vehicles is not significantly higher than traditional diesel vehicles. Some regular diesel is still used, but these vehicles are more ecologically friendly than regular cars and trucks.
Ethanol is another biofuel that can be used to help reduce the impact on the environment, and another vehicle included in the eco car industry. Ethanol is a biomass fuel that is created from wheat, and eco cars can run on E85, which is a blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent traditional gasoline. E85 and regular gasoline both can be used in these vehicles, also known as flexible fuel vehicles, and this can be convenient if you are in an area where E85 is not widely available.
Electric vehicles are another vehicle option in the eco-car industry. Hybrid electric cars can be fueled by either fuel cells or batteries, and each type is different. Fuel cells get power from hydrogen, but this fuel can be difficult to store, and there are very few fuel cell vehicles on the roads right now. These vehicles are very ecologically friendly and release no harmful emissions at all. Battery-powered electric vehicles are another option in electric cars. These vehicles use batteries to run. They are extremely friendly to the environment, but most of these vehicles need to be recharged frequently, and thus have limited range. This is the same technology that is used alongside a gas fuel system in hybrid vehicles. There has been some research into using supercapacitors instead of batteries in electric vehicles. Supercapacitors have advantages over batteries because they last much longer and can work more efficiently.
Any vehicle in the eco car industry offers many benefits to the environment over traditional vehicles.