I’ve long been a fan of electric vehicles, but have always wondered when they would reach into other segments like trucks and minivans. You know, those large gas guzzling vehicles that have to haul a lot and don’t always need to travel far?
Actually, it’s those 2 facts that make a plug-in hybrid style platform perfect for a pickup truck or a minivan. Rather than putting in a large expensive battery pack in order to get long range, the idea is to put in a battery pack that is just large enough to perform mostly all day-to-day trips. Then, for the odd road trip or weekend excursion, a typical gas-burning internal combustion engine can take over to propel the vehicle beyond the range of the battery pack.
It’s a great way to get people hooked on an electric vehicle driving experience, while at the same time it seems much less daunting then going all-in with a 100% electric vehicle. After all, there is a learning curve involved. Charging methods, location of stations, how to figure out range, and just in general, there’s hesitation in everyone to change and going to an EV is definitely change.
The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is a great middle road vehicle – the middle between 100% gasoline and 100% electric. With a 16 kWh battery pack, the Pacifica Hybrid can travel up to 30 miles on a charge, and then the gasoline engine can take you hundreds of miles farther.
On average, in North America, the typical person drives less than 40 miles per day. If that’s over more than 1 trip, or if there is charging available at the destination, then theoretically a Pacifica Hybrid owner could drive on electric power all the time.
That’s what happens quite often with people who own a GM Volt or i3 with Range Extender. Over 100,000 miles, they may drive 1% or less than on gasoline.