PLUG-IN HYBRID FAQs

PHEV Has Arrived

FAQS - GENERAL

  • What is a Hybrid?
  • What are the types of hybrid?

In its simplest terms a hybrid is a car that uses a combination of an internal combustion engine powered with petrol or diesel and an electric motor to power the car forward.

Mild hybrid (MHEV): As the name would suggest, MHEVs have very little electric assistance. Usually, they are a larger version of a standard car battery and have a very small electric motor that lends a hand to the conventional engine when the car is starting from a standstill or accelerating at a rapid pace. MHEVs are not capable of being propelled by the electric motor alone.

Hybrid (HEV): A hybrid has a larger battery than an MHEV which is able of propelling the car using electricity alone for very short distances, such as in a traffic jam. The battery cannot be connected to a main socket and is recharged continuously by the petrol engine as the car moves forward, or by harnessing the energy when the car slows (regenerative braking).

Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV): The PHEV is the Hybrid vehicle that can utilise pure electric battery range with the largest battery of them types of hybrid vehicles all. The car can be connected to the mains to recharge. It can cover reasonable substantial distances using only its electric motor. As PHEVs can be run on pure electric power, they also offer higher fuel efficiency and savings on petrol, particularly when charged daily or after journeys, when compared to HEV’s and MHEV’s.

FAQS - DRIVING EXPERIENCE

  • What is it like to drive an electric/PHEV?
  • How do I get the best out of my new Plug-In Hybrid

There is simply nothing like getting into an electric or PHEV and trying it for yourself. Although, we can tell you what to expect, as the experience really is a pleasant surprise to most motorists. You can request a test drive today with your local PEUGEOT dealer to try one yourself. Most of the car’s controls will be well known to you so there is nothing to new to worry about. Plug-in hybrid cars are all automatic, so there is no clutch pedal or gear lever. To start driving the car, press the start button to activate the system, select ‘D’ for drive, release the parking brake and set off on your journey.

As an electric motor delivers all its power as soon as you press the accelerator pedal, it feels faster than most cars powered by a combustion engine only. They're also great at holding the road. As the heaviest part of the car – the battery pack – is directly under the car. This means they have a very low centre of gravity which makes them extremely stable when driving around corners.

All PEUGEOT PHEV cars feature selectable driving modes which change the way the car feels and responds. These range from an ‘Eco’ setting which enables you can prolong your precious energy over more distance to ‘Sport’, which gives you more power and an exhilarating driving feel but consumes more power and fuel.

PEUGEOT’s PHEV cars will normally start in electric mode when charged. Within the car, settings allow you to lock the system into electric-only mode, which allows you to make the most of the silent and emission-free powertrain. The next feature that stands out on plug-in hybrid cars is regenerative braking. This is a braking system that when you lift your foot from the accelerator pedal the electric motor switches to become a generator, harnessing the power that is normally wasted to funnel power back into charging the battery. You can select the level of regeneration depending on the way you drive, ranging from low to very strong.

FAQS - BATTERY

  • How long will a battery last?
  • Does the battery need special care?
  • Can the battery be repaired?
  • What does the PEUGEOT battery warranty cover?

Although EV batteries will likely lose some performance over time and use, they are designed to be much more adaptable than the power packs in household electrical items so they should last as long as the car. The car’s electronics will carefully manage things that impact battery life such as high or low temperatures which might harm the battery cells, but owners can learn how to better look after their battery too. Your PEUGEOT dealer will help you understand these when you collect your car.

Your PEUGEOT battery pack is maintenance-free, so you won't ever need to carry out maintenance to keep it healthy - all you will need to do is charge it when needed.

When your car is serviced, your PEUGEOT technician will plug into the car’s computer and perform a health check of the battery and advise you on how to optimise your driving to give the battery the longest life possible.

The internal computer will do most of the work for you, making sure that the electrical cells are kept at the correct temperature in extreme weather or while rapid charging. This will make sure it can charge at the fastest possible rate but will also ensure the long-term health of your battery.

Also, it isn't optimum for the battery to be left with only a small amount of charge. Be sure to keep this in mind if you are going away on an extended holiday or not using the car for longer than a week or so

All PEUGEOT EV batteries are specifically designed to not require maintenance and shouldn't need any repairs or maintenance it its lifetime. Additionally, it is also protected within a strong, sealed steel case to stop damage from water, road debris or an accident.

Although in the rare event there happens to be an issue caused by external damage or a malfunction, the car’s systems will make sure it remains safe. The entire battery pack can then be removed and looked at by PEUGEOT technicians to diagnose the issue. For Australia individual cells will not be replaced, we will be replacing the entire traction battery.

The new vehicle warranty that PEUGEOT offers on all its models covers material or manufacturing defects for a period of five years, unlimited kms for passenger vehicles, and 200,000kms for commercial vehicles. We at PEUGEOT understand that some owners might be nervous about the new technology around electric vehicles, so the warranty for the lithium-ion battery pack is extended to eight years or 160,000km^

 

^PHEV traction battery warranty: 8 years or 160,000 Km, whichever is sooner, from the vehicle’s warranty start date.

FAQS - MAINTENANCE

  • Does PEUGEOT dealer look after electric cars?

Most of the vehicle components are shared with the petrol and diesel models, with the main difference being the electric powertrain. It is actually much simpler, however conducting repairs requires special training to ensure everyone is kept safe – after all, there is high voltage and a lot of power involved. Your PEUGEOT retailer’s expert technicians have undertaken a series of training courses which ensure that they are able to maintain and repair electric and hybrid vehicles. At the end of the training, they are certified as experts in electric vehicle maintenance. It’s essential that any accidental repairs are undertaken by technicians who are qualified to work with electric vehicles. This will mean that any damage to the EV battery, motor or charging systems is handled properly to keep everyone safe and ensure the systems continue to function reliably.

FAQS - SAFETY

  • Are electric cars safe in an accident?
  • Can you drive electric cars in heavy water?

The independent testing organisation EuroNCAP tests most cars on the market and has discovered that electric vehicles are as safe - or even safer - than a conventional car in the event of an accident. The welfare of our customers and that of other road users is our top priority, so PEUGEOT’s engineering team ensure that all our vehicles are fitted with the latest technology to prevent accidents from taking place in the first instance. In the unfortunate event of an accident, the car’s strong shell and passive safety systems will ensure that the occupants and the electrical systems are well isolated from harm.

It’s well known of course that electricity and water don't mix, which is why PEUGEOT’s engineers go to extraordinary lengths to ensure its EVs can be used in all the same conditions you would expect to use a conventional petrol or diesel car. Prototypes have been tested in heavy rain, standing water and other extreme weather conditions. They have even been tested in a lightning storm situations for safety. In general, there is no need to modify your behaviour in an electric car as both electric and cars with a combustion engine are both safe to drive in extreme weather or a car wash.

FAQS - CHARGING

  • Is it easy to charge a PHEV?
  • How will owning an electric car affect my bills?
  • How do I charge away from home?
  • What happens if I run out of charge?

The amount of time it takes to charge an electric car will depend on the type of electrical connection you have access to and your vehicle's inbuilt on board charger's capacity. The slowest charger is a normal three-pin socket, which is best kept for ‘emergency’ use when there is not any other form of charger available. The amount of electrical charge from these is around 2kW per hour. The average capacity for a car battery is around 60kWh. Do the calculations and see that will take a long time to get to 100% full. They can be extremely handy if you just want to get a few extra miles in the ‘tank’ though. The most common charger for EV owners is a wallbox, which will normally feed power at either 3.6, 7.2 or 11kWh. There are also public AC chargers, that have similar outputs to a wallbox, so plugging in while you shop or have lunch in a busy city centre is fast and easy. The biggest and fastest chargers of all are called DC ‘rapids’ and may be found at service stations and other locations up and down the country.

If you have an electric car for daily use, it can be expected that your energy bill will rise. The benefit, of course, is that you will never have to go to a petrol station again, so your cost is negated. In general, the cost of the electricity will be about a quarter of the price of the fuel you used to fill your petrol-powered car up with. Once you have purchased your electric car, it will be worth shopping around for different energy deals which consider your higher usage and reduce the price per kW/h unit. Some suppliers are able to offer you cheaper energy prices at night by using a smart meter. Another efficient way of cutting costs is looking out for places which offer free electric car charging. Some shops and businesses will let you plug in for free and you can charge at your place of work without it being considered a taxable benefit.

Most EV owners will charge their car at home or work most of the time, just because it is so convenient. You can park your car while you sleep or get on with your day of work or leisure and get back to find your battery has been topped up. However, there’re likely going to be times when you need to charge your vehicle away from your home. You can find convenient charging points along your route with the MYPEUGEOT app. Once you have located the charge point, may sure to make a note of the type of charger it is. If you plan to be parked for more than an hour or are plugging in a PHEV, an AC charger will be the most suitable for your vehicle. These do not usually have a cable attached, so you will need to use the ‘Type 2’ lead which comes complete with your car. For the quickest and most efficient charge for your pure electric car, look for a DC charger, usually referred to as a ‘rapid’. Rapid chargers work at a very high voltage and can add lots of power extremely quickly. They have cables that are attached to the charger unit, so make sure to park as close as possible to your charging port, and then select the plug marked ‘CCS’.

You may have heard of ‘range anxiety’. This is something which can be experienced by most first-time electric car owners. If you are driving a PHEV, the car will simply switch to petrol power once the battery has run out of charge.

FAQS - TOWING

  • Can I tow with an electric vehicle or PHEV?

In most cases, towing trailers, and other items with your electric or hybrid vehicle will hamper the efficiency and reduce the electric-only range available to the driver. Petrol or diesel car face similar issues, which will affect the fuel economy of the vehicle. This is changing as EVs become more powerful and efficient.