A mild hybrid has a petrol or diesel engine and an electric motor. The electric motor supplements the internal combustion engine during heavy power demand (eg when accelerating hard) but a mild hybrid cannot run on electric power alone.
Because the engine is not used to charge the batteries or to provide power for the electric motor, a mild hybrid can be classed as a parallel hybrid.
Mild hybrid systems do not provide the same advantages as full hybrids in city emissions performance and overall fuel efficiency. However, they can use smaller electric motors and traction batteries, so they are lighter and cheaper to implement than full hybrid systems.
Common mild hybrid vehicles include:
- Mercedes-Benz S400 BlueHybrid
- BMW ActiveHybrid 7
- Chevrolet Silverado PHT