Whether you call it a proliferation, or an explosion, the growth of the global hybrid-electric vehicle (HEV) segment cannot be denied. No longer the province of a few players—although one model, the Toyota Prius, predominates as a percentage of total sales—HEV engineering and development is now a focus of every major OEM as well as a raft of start-ups.
AEI has been reporting on the rise of HEVs since Prius originally launched in Japan in 1997. As the number of production models and types of hybrid-propulsion systems have expanded, SAE International members have commented on the growing need for a single-source guide to the HEV space. Which OEMs have hybrids? What types of powertrains are being used? What about the batteries and their suppliers?
It’s rather like the old baseball-park adage, “You can’t tell the players without a scorecard.” Listening to you, we decided to offer this basic guide to the current crop of production HEVs, and those which have been confirmed for MY2013, using public-domain information from the OEMs as well as our industry sources. Full technical details of some vehicles are not yet released, but the roster itself shows the depth of this increasingly vibrant and technically sophisticated product area.