As technology advances in the automotive industry, the popularity of electric vehicles (EVs) is beginning to increase. “Electric vehicle” is the overarching term for all fully electric cars, hybrids, mild hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and fuel-cell vehicles. Although these terms mean the vehicles differ slightly, they are all working toward achieving a common goal: lowering emissions.
There are many benefits to buying an electric vehicle of any kind. After their initial higher cost, electric vehicles have considerably lower running costs, as well as maintenance and servicing fees. This means over the lifetime of your vehicle you could be saving thousands of dollars. The largest benefit, however, is the huge impact the reduced or non-existent emissions these cars produce, have on the planet.
Now, you may be thinking, although, EVs are incredibly practical they’re probably not much of a thrill to drive? Well, we are here to tell you, you could not be more wrong. Electric vehicles have the ability to accelerate faster than some traditional fuel-powered cars and offer a smoother drive and more immediate responsiveness.
In terms of BMW hybrid cars, the German manufacturer currently has a range of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) on the market. This range includes the; BMW 330e Sedan Plug-in Hybrid, BMW 530e Sedan Plug-in Hybrid, BMW 745e Plug-in Hybrid, and BMW X5 xDrive45e Plug-in Hybrid.
What Is A Hybrid BMW?
A BMW hybrid car has both a petrol and electric engine. Unlike some hybrids that only recharge their batteries through regenerative braking, a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, like the name suggests, can be plugged in to recharge its battery. The benefit of this is that the range of the car is increased significantly and can do some shorter trips on its battery power alone.
For many people, the idea of owning an electric car is appealing but they worry about lower mileage and fewer charging points as compared to petrol stations. The good news is, there is a perfect solution for people with these concerns. The mild-hybrid electric vehicle or MHEV has the benefit of using an electric engine during high fuel consumption times, such as during start-up, yet also runs a traditional combustion engine.
The main benefit of mild hybrid cars is that they require considerably less fuel than non-hybrid vehicles and house a battery engine system that does not require charging. The question remains, if it has a battery why do I not need to charge it? The battery system on a mild hybrid vehicle allows for recharging when the vehicle is under braking, removing the need for a recharge but it also means the battery will only be charged when it is being driven.
Mild hybrid cars are a popular choice with people entering the electric vehicle market, due to their lower cost and the reduced frequency in re-fuelling compared to traditional petrol-only cars. However, if you want a truly electric experience, a plug-in hybrid from the BMW hybrid range is the way to go.
Much like their mild hybrid counterparts, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) have both a petrol and an electric power source. However, the electric batteries in a PHEV have a charging socket and are able to power the car without the assistance of the combustion engine.
This means that a plug-in hybrid is able to deliver you the best of both worlds in terms of flexibility of use and increased mileage. For instance, the BMW hybrid 530e Sedan can travel up to 45 kilometres under battery power alone. For many commuters, this is well under their daily drive to and from work. When you need to venture further, the petrol-powered engine allows you to eat through the kilometres without the worry of finding the next charging station.
Using eDrive technology, the BMW PHEVs are intuitive in choosing when they use battery or fuel power to maximise the efficiency of both engines, lowering fuel consumption and battery recharges
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Advantages Of A BMW Hybrid Car
Deciding to purchase a BMW plug-in hybrid electric vehicle has a huge impact on lessening the rate of Co2 emissions and creating a cleaner environment for future generations to come. One of the greatest benefits of a BMW PHEV vehicle is the electric engine’s ability to cover short daily commutes without the assistance of the combustion engine.
This allows you to save on regular fill-ups at the petrol station and delivers peace of mind knowing you can drive varying distances with a consistent power source to drive your engine. Dependent on the state in which you live, there are some government incentives available to electric vehicles owners, such as reduced stamp duty or registration fees.
Whatever the driving factor behind your decision to get into a BMW hybrid electric vehicle, these cars bring a multitude of advantages in both eco-friendliness and an invigorating driver experience.
Factors That Can Affect Your BMW Hybrids Performance
One of the largest effects on your hybrid car’s battery performance is extreme temperatures. In Western Australia, this is mostly related to heat but the same is also applicable for colder regions in the rest of Australia. The battery of a BMW hybrid vehicle is affected by the heat and cold in that it uses a significant amount of its stored energy to warm/cool both the battery system and the interior when starting the car.
The best option to navigate your way around this issue is to precondition your car before use. This means, starting the car whilst it is still hooked up to the charging point, allowing the battery to draw from the charging current rather than drawing from its energy stores and decreasing its range. Other factors that can affect the performance of your BMW hybrid vehicle are carrying a heavy load and enthusiastic driving.
Perfect For The Environmentally Conscious
For those conscious of the impact of their decisions, both big and small, on the environment, purchasing an electric vehicle is the next step in achieving an eco-friendly lifestyle. The BMW hybrid range is environmentally conscious in more ways than one. Along with the use of battery-powered systems, BMW has worked to incorporate an ethically sourced and sustainable textile material called kenaf, which is used throughout the interior of the BMW i3.
Other textile materials are made from a specialised fabric produced from recycled PET bottle granules, contributing to a manufacturing process that recycles 99% of the waste created during production. The brand has also worked to give old vehicle batteries from hybrid vehicles a second-life in stationary storage systems to create clean energy supply elsewhere.
BMW Hybrids Available In Australia
The 3 Series Sedan: 330e
An innovative PHEV, the 330e has the new BMW TwinPower Turbo 4-cylinder petrol engine along with the eDrive electric motor to bring the ultimate in performance, economy, and sustainability. The combined power of these two engines is an impressive 215kW, giving the driver improved acceleration along with low fuel consumption.
The BMW hybrid 330e accelerates from 0km to 100km in an impressive 5.9 seconds and reaches a top speed of 230km/h (not that we endorse these speeds). The most important part of any hybrid vehicle is the energy management system and how well it can conserve both fuel consumption and battery usage. The 330e has an eDrive system that ensures each component is working simultaneously to achieve the best efficiency along with an increased electric range and an unmatchable driving experience.
The 5 Series Sedan: 530e
The BMW hybrid 530e delivers the ultimate in eco-friendliness and is also a thrill to drive. The larger sedan houses an impressively powerful yet economic 6 cylinder petrol engine with the option for an equally economical TwinPower Turbo 2.0 litre 4 cylinder diesel engine. Importantly, the 530e has a high-voltage battery powering a dynamic electric motor, to bring you the best of both worlds.
A key factor in any hybrid vehicle is the energy management system and how well it can conserve both fuel consumption and battery usage. The 530e has an eDrive system that ensures each component is working simultaneously to achieve the best efficiency along with an increased electric range and a superior driving experience.
The concern of not knowing where you may be able to recharge your PHEV is mitigated thanks to BMW Charging. This service provides in-car mapping and notifications of the charging stations nearest to you, as well as the ability to search for their location further along your journey. This allows your BMW plug-in hybrid to always have energy available to power either engine
The 7 Series: 745e
The 7 series brings with it a luxurious electric and combustion ride that works to exhilarate the driver in the ultimate comfort. The inbuilt electric motor into the 8-speed automatic transmission allows for driving speeds of 140km/h under electric drive alone.
The recognisable presence of the BMW hybrid 745e coupled with its powerful force makes for a truly unique PHEV. It has the ability to generate battery charge during periods of braking and coasting to increase the high-voltage batteries range and increase the overall efficiency of the 745e.
Available in a multitude of options for both the interior and exterior, the 745e can be personalised to fit those looking for a unique and exciting PHEV. As with all BMW’s PHEV range, the 745e has an energy management system that conserves both fuel consumption and battery usage. The eDrive system ensures each component is working simultaneously to achieve the best efficiency along with an increased electric range and an unmatchable driving experience.
The X5 : xDrive45e
The BMW hybrid X5 truly is leading the way in the larger SUV plug-in hybrid electric vehicle market. The X5 is designed as an intuitive SUV that can easily tackle a variety of terrains, with xSand, xGravel, xRocks, and xSnow drive modes. These specialised modes allow for the vehicle to alter how it drives and the way it is consuming energy to provide the ultimate in both drive and efficiency.
The X5 works with you to identify the upcoming sections of road that will be better suited to the electric motor or will allow for an opportunity to recharge the high-voltage battery system during periods of braking or coasting. This anticipation of engine usage allows for both the combustion engine and the electric motor to be used to their maximum efficiency and performance.
For those using the BMW hybrid X5 as a daily commuter during the week and seeking adventure on the weekends, this SUV is well-equipped for both scenarios. The solely electric range of 80km allows for stress-free commuting, as well as efficient long-haul travel.