Saturday, October 6, 2007

VW and Hybrids

It's a shame that VW isn't offering diesel's this year in its product line, but the word is that they'll be back next year with a new engine. Them comes new that VW is developing ICE/electric hybrids for their entire product line. Some of these hybrids could be out as early as next year.

I've always to wondered about the use of hybrid technologies though. Yes they reduce the amount of fuel used during the service life of the vehicle, but what about those batteries? What is the energy, recycling and environmental impact of those batteries? Can they be recycled in whole or part into new batteries or other items?

There is also a note that they are working on a pure electric version of some vehicles. A few weeks ago I found a company that had done trial electric conversions on contract for VW a few years ago. Again, the question of battery disposal remains, though I am otherwise completely behind the idea of plug-in cars (more on that in another post).