The history of hybrid cars goes a long way back. We can easily
say that the first hybrid car in the world was introduced over
100 years ago in 1899 by none other than the big name Porsche.
Back then introducing a hybrid car was a huge step taken by the
The first hybrid car called the Lohner-Porsche Mixte Hybrid (Semper
Vivus) had in-wheel electric motors and on-board gas engine to
recharge the batteries. Because of this, it was considered to
be a very unique vehicle. Of the first hybrid cars pictured above
the bottom picture is of the first hybrid car invented and the
top photo is of the first hybrid car sold.
In 1905 the Woods Interurban hybrid car was introduced as the
second hybrid car ever made but switching from gasoline engine
to electric motor took 15 minutes which was not consumer-friendly.
Also in 1905 a German inventor named Henri Pieper developed a
parallel hybrid car which he would gain a patent on in 1909. The
Galt Gas Electric hybrid car would be introduced in Canada in
Considering the time when the first series hybrid car was introduced
by Porsche, it was not an easy task. It was something completely
different and was considered as a big risk. This hybrid car's
battery could only be charged by its onboard engine, and it did
not require an electrical plug. Because it was a bit radical for
the times it did not do well with the masses.
The genius Ferdinand Porsche came up with the concept of hybrid
cars and the first with hub motors. The hybrid car was not ahead
of its time only because it was the first gas-electric hybrid,
but it was one of the earliest cars being developed with an eye
towards being an everyday commercial vehicle. The Porsche hybrid
could travel almost 40 miles (64.3 kilometers), when the battery
was fully charged.
The first hybrid car in the world, introduced by Porsche, was
designed in a way that it removed the requirement for a gearbox,
drive shafts or chains and a clutch. This reduced a considerable
amount of mechanical friction and allowed the vehicle to use 83
percent of the energy, which is more efficient than today's internal
combustion engine vehicles.
Later on, Porsche added hub motors to all four wheels, which
enhanced the torque and power of the first hybrid car and permitted
it to reach at the top speed of 70 mph (112.6 kilometers per hour).
The trend of hybrid cars did not take place because of the cheap
availability of gasoline. But then again, this invention was appreciated
a lot by a few automotive experts and enthusiasts. Manufacturing
a hybrid car is not that easy even in today's world as there is
much technology to be considered. Coming up with the concept of
a hybrid car 100 years back was an amazing initiative by Ferdinand
Porsche, which has come full circle and has proven to be a great
idea once again today.
Hybrid cars and plug-in hybrids are growing in popularity in
today's world, because they are environmentally friendly and save
on gasoline which is not nearly as cheap as it used to be.
The reason why Porsche stopped manufacturing such cars was that
electric motors became more expensive and gasoline went on becoming
quite cheap. Full battery-electric cars suffered the same fate
because of long recharging times and they did not have nearly
the range of gasoline-powered vehicles.
Since there were no economic reasons to further develop hybrid
cars at that time, Porsche stopped manufacturing the vehicles
and continued to make regular gasoline-powered cars, which obviously
have always been very popular among car lovers all these years.
Buzz - additional information about current
and past hybrid cars.