AAA tips on driving a hybrid ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: AAA tips on driving a hybrid

Monday, November 13, 2006

AAA tips on driving a hybrid

It's all good advice coming from a source you trust when it comes to driving. What it comes down to is simple. Regenerative braking powers the battery. So coasting to a stop isn't a good idea when you're driving a hybrid.

Vallejo Times Herald - AAA gives hybrid how-to for going that extra mile

AAA gives hybrid how-to for going that extra mile
Times-Herald Staff report
Article Launched:11/11/2006 07:24:32 AM PST

November is Hybrid Awareness Month in California, and in recognition, AAA of Northern California offers some information about the fuel-saving vehicles.

State officials named November Hybrid Awareness Month at AAA's urging because some hybrid owners aren't getting the best fuel efficiency possible, and AAA wants to share helpful techniques, said AAA's Jenny Mack.

"As a rule, hybrid cars offer vastly superior mileage compared to their gasoline-only counterparts, but drivers don't always achieve the fuel efficiency they anticipated," Mack said.

AAA's experts found, for instance, that a periodic glance at the car's energy monitor can help maximize efficiency by noting the state of battery charge and calculating miles-per-gallon, she said.

Also, identifying braking techniques unique to particular hybrids can help recharge its battery and improve fuel efficiency, Mack said.

The following are AAA tips for some of the most popular hybrid models:

• Toyota Prius - When anticipating a stop, take advantage of the regenerative braking by lightly applying pressure to the brake pedal. This will help control speed and send more energy to the batteries than coasting to a stop.

• Honda Civic Hybrid - This car's latest version uses an auto-stop feature to control gas engine use at stop lights and signs. To manage this feature and maximize efficiency, don't allow your vehicle to creep once you come to a stop. The engine will re-engage and may not activate auto-stop until the next long stop.

• Ford Escape Hybrid - When exceeding 30 miles per hour, this car's gas engine automatically kicks in. Max A/C will also automatically engage the gas engine. The most efficient mode for the Escape is long, smooth and steady braking that recharges the battery.

AAA offers free alternative fuel information and hybrid driving tips at its local offices all month.

For more information, visit

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