What Is A Hybrid?

Toyota Hybrids save fuel, reduce emissions and even recharge their batteries without being plugged in. You might think they are complicated to own, yet the opposite is true – they are designed to make your life easier.

The battery in our Hybrids is as important as the engine.Without it, you won’t be going anywhere.
That’s why we lovingly engineer each and every battery to live as long as the rest of the car.

Nothing makes us prouder to know that these batteries have been powering everyday lives, all around the world, since 1997.

Our Hybrids take urban life in their stride.
Without confining your lifestyle to the city limits.
Gliding along on smooth electric power, our Hybrids were born to take the tension out of your city commute.

So when it’s time for the weekend pursuit, you’ll be all charged up and ready to take advantage of the freedom to roam.

Every family is made up of different personalities. The same can be said of Hybrid.

You can tackle the urban commute with our compact Yaris Hybrid, turn on the style with Auris Hybrid hatchback, express your sense of adventure with Auris Touring Sports, bring everyone together in the seven-seat Prius, or keep it original with the innovator of Hybrid: The Prius.

Our Hybrid story began back in 1997. The word spread and now over eight million Hybrid drivers are on the same page.
From the roads to the racetracks, our Hybrids are continuing to grow in performance and popularity.

Over the next two years you will see the arrival of a number of new Hybrid models around the world.

Born in the era of the MP3. Hybrid arrived ahead of its time.
Some weren’t ready for it, they thought Hybrid was a thing of the future. But our reliable Hybrids have been in the present for nearly two decades, ready for the here and now.

Throughout this journey, over seven million drivers have embraced a future with Hybrid.


Life's Easier With Hybrid

There's nothing complicated about driving a Toyota Hybrid Car. See how Toyota's designed them to be as easy to live with as any conventional car in the video on the right.

Double The Power, Double The Response

Our Hybrids comprise two engines: one petrol, one electric. They work together to deliver smooth power and responsive torque, as and when you need it. Should you need any extra performance – for instance, when you're overtaking – simply press the Power button and enjoy an immediate reply.

Intelligent Power Whatever The Journey

  • Uphill: Both engines power the vehicle to deliver maximum performance.
  • Deceleration and Braking: The system recycles kinetic energy to charge the battery.
  • Overtaking: Both engines power the vehicle to deliver maximum performance.
  • Standstill: Both engines are automatically switched off so no energy is wasted when idling.

What is a hybrid car's fuel economy like?

It’s no secret that, on most cars, driving in the city increases fuel costs. Hybrids don't behave like most cars. For a start, they recycle energy and have two engines working in harmony to deliver figures as impressively low as 3 litres of petrol consumed per 62miles/100km. A noticeable return indeed and one that can be further reduced when driving in Eco Mode. Of course, if you want to eliminate that figure completely, simply select electric EV-mode, go easy on the pedal and you won’t use a single drop when accelerating up to 30mph.

A Quiet Feeling of Tranquility

When you select the electric EV-mode on our hybrid cars you'll notice something quite special – nothing at all! The silence and sheer tranquility of the engine really is something you have to experience to believe. Electric EV-mode also produces zero emissions and provides an ultra-smooth ride. In fact, it’s a very calm place to be.

Low Emissions You Can’t Ignore

The perfect partnership of an electric motor and a petrol engine means our Hybrid emissions start as small as 70g per km, which is an amazingly low statistic for a family car. In fact, when driving in electric EV-mode, they can drive up to 50km/h without producing any emissions whatsoever – you’d find more CO2 in a spent balloon.

Plug-in for even more zero-emission journeys

Think of a plug-in Hybrid as an electric car and a Hybrid rolled into one. With all the benefits of our Hybrid models, but boasting an extended electric driving range for even more zero-emission journeys, a Plug-in Hybrid is even kinder to your wallet and the environment.


How long does a hybrid battery last?

There are two motor engines in a hybrid vehicle: one electric engine and one conventional engine. Whilst the hybrid’s conventional engine is powered by fuel such as diesel or petrol, its electric engine is driven purely by a hybrid battery.

Our hybrid battery is not like a standard car battery, but a much more sophisticated component which has been designed and engineered by Toyota to last – and keep working – for the entire lifetime of your car. Unlike a pure electric ‘plug-in’ vehicle that needs to have its battery recharged after a long journey, a hybrid battery continually recharges itself when your car is in motion.

It does this as you drive, through the car wheels turning; and even when you use your brakes, through a process called ‘regenerative energy’. In effect, hybrid cars are like small generators, continually topping their battery power up with electricity and then using it to power the electric engine - and saving on fuel costs.

How much does a hybrid battery cost?

It is possible to replace a hybrid battery beyond its warranty. Prices vary depending on model. Please contact your local dealer for more details.

Can a hybrid battery be recycled?

Toyota vehicles are amongst the most economical and environmentally friendly available and hybrid battery recycling is important to us. Removing and disposing of a hybrid battery is done by a Toyota Authorised Repairer, and, under EU Directive 2006/66/EC, we aim to recycle over 50% of the weight of a hybrid battery.

Hybrid compared to petrol and diesel.

A hybrid vehicle has the advantage of being able to switch to its electric motor to drive in heavy traffic, built-up areas or at slower speeds, thereby using no fuel at all to power its conventional engine. In fact, to demonstrate the benefits of hybrid fuel economy, Toyota dealers often invite interested customers to take a hybrid for a test drive and then see just how far they can travel using the electric mode only.

Does a hybrid car save you fuel?

On average, at least 50% of the journey time for our hybrid test drives is spent purely in electric mode. This means during this time the conventional engine is not needed for power and therefore no fuel has to be used.

Regenerative braking and fuel efficiency.

Remember, though, unlike like a purely electric plug-in vehicle, or a conventional car, your hybrid is using the engine to recharge its electric batteries and keep them topped up for use. It also uses an advanced regenerative braking system to charge its batteries too, so even when decelerating or braking on a steep hill, for example, the driver is reclaiming electricity – thereby adding to the fuel efficiency of the hybrid.

Will a hybrid save me money?

New Vehicle Excise Duty (car tax) rules came into effect in April 2017 and cars are charged both according to their CO2 emissions levels and their price when new. Petrol and diesel engine cars emitting 99g/km currently have an annual tax bill of £140 to pay, whereas a comparable hybrid pays £130. There are other savings to be had too. In London, for example, some hybrid cars will be exempt from the congestion charge if they emit less than 75g/km.

Fuel savings offer the main savings in running a hybrid, especially in town, as often it drives only on its electric powered engine, using electricity it self-generates in motion. So no fuel is used. This is a massive saving over a long term as fuel in the tank can be ‘eked out’.

Hybrid servicing costs.

In many ways a hybrid car is much the same as a conventional car, the main difference is that it is also able to run on electricity as well as petrol or diesel. This means it also has a sophisticated nickel storage battery and electric engine that allows it to operate purely under electric power without needing recharging.

This specialist technology has been continually refined by Toyota for reliability and performance to the extent that hybrid car maintenance, servicing costs and servicing frequency - are no more than for conventional cars. It costs about the same to service a Toyota hybrid as any comparable car and can be carried out by a Toyota Authorised Repairer. Toyota’s own Hybrid Health Check is included for free with any Hybrid Service. And even if you’re not due a service, you can still benefit from the Hybrid Health Check at a cost of just £45.

Additional hybrid maintenance costs?

The hybrid’s sophisticated nickel battery may be an expensive item to replace, but Toyota offers a 5-year, 100, 000 mile warranty on its batteries – the same as for the whole car, and even this warranty can be extended up to 11 years.

Strict emission charges have come into effect in London (and may be repeated in other major cities) which will penalise high emission vehicles and charge them daily fees, adding greatly to running costs. Low emissions vehicles such as hybrids and pure electric-only vehicles will largely avoid these charges. Hybrid technology has come on in leaps and bounds and the good news is that on all levels, Toyota is leading the way.

Are hybrids good for the environment?

How do hybrid cars reduce air pollution? It’s a question of emissions. As a general guide, petrol engines produce the most CO2 gasses and diesel engines produce pollutants, such as NOx, whilst hybrid cars have the lowest emissions.

Hybrid cars and effect on air pollution.

How much a hybrid car is better for the environment than a conventional car is often subject to the size of the vehicle and the prevailing driving conditions. In comparisons between the same size and class of vehicle, say a compact city car, and driving in built-up city traffic, hybrid cars use substantially less fuel. They also have considerably lower emissions than conventional cars when running at any speeds.

Hybrid car CO2 emissions.

Toyota is passionately committed to reducing CO2 emissions in our vehicles. So much so that we have set a target to cut them from our vehicles by 90% by 2050, compared to the levels we had in 2010 with our New Vehicle Zero CO2 challenge.

Find out more about how we aim to do this via the link or see below for how hybrid cars CO2 emissions compare to diesel and petrol equivalents within the Toyota range.

Hybrid cars vs petrol and diesel cars.

In a direct emissions comparison between an Auris (diesel), a Yaris (petrol) and a Yaris Hybrid; the Yaris (petrol) created the highest levels of CO2 g/km, the Auris (diesel) created less, and the Toyota Yaris Hybrid emitted the least. Purely electric cars obviously have no fuel and therefore have zero CO2 emissions, but they do need daily charging of electricity, which is costly for the owner and also for the environment as this electricity needs to be generated and supplied. A hybrid car needs no recharging.

How do I charge my hybrid?

The advantage of a hybrid vehicle is that it recharges its own battery ‘on the move’ – as it’s being driven by its conventional engine - it even recharges itself when you brake, too. So, issues such as: ‘how to charge a hybrid car’, ‘where are the hybrid charging points located’, or ‘where is my nearest hybrid charging station?’ do not apply.

Charging at home?

Because you don’t have to plug in a hybrid to recharge the battery, you aren’t restricted by range. That means no overnight charging, finding power points, waiting or wires. A Toyota hybrid vehicle is electrically self-sufficient and switches automatically between its electric and petrol powered engines as and when it needs to. Obviously, you do need to fill up your tank, as you have a conventional petrol engine – but hybrid efficiency means your fuel lasts that much longer.

Can a hybrid run on electricity alone?

Having the advantage of both electric and petrol power doesn’t mean that you can run your hybrid without fuel. The electric and conventional engines in a hybrid are designed to work together. So even though a hybrid can operate in an electric-only mode, it must have fuel in the tank – even if only a little. Trying to run a hybrid purely on the electric engine without having the fuel to power the conventional engine will result in damage.

Difference between a hybrid and a PHEV (Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle)?

The Toyota Prius Plug-in hybrid has all the benefits of being a hybrid, but also has a hybrid charge point so you can give the larger battery an extra charge, at home or at any of the network of PHEV charging points.

Now with an increased electric range of up to 39 miles with a top speed of 83mph in electric mode as well as taking only 2 hours* to fully charge.

Mileage comparison with petrol/diesel.

As the hybrid car increases speed, say on a motorway, then its conventional engine kicks in and it starts to use petrol just like any conventional car. However, even when taking slow speed usage out of the equation, hybrid mpg is still very impressive.