Mass Impacts on Fuel Economies of Conventional vs. Hybrid Electric Vehicles
The strong correlation between vehicle weight and fuel economy for conventional vehicles (CVs) is considered common knowledge, and the relationship of mass reduction to fuel consumption reduction for conventional vehicles (CVs) is often cited without separating effects of powertrain vs. vehicle body (glider), nor on the ground of equivalent vehicle performance level. This paper challenges the assumption that this relationship is easily summarized. Further, for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) the relationship between mass, performance and fuel consumption is not the same as for CVs, and vary with hybrid types. For fully functioning (all wheel regeneration) hybrid vehicles, where battery pack and motor(s) have enough power and energy storage, a very large fraction of kinetic energy is recovered and engine idling is effectively eliminated.