Uses gasoline Uses gasoline

Hybrid Electric Vehicle

Hybrid Electric Cars (some people just call them Hybrids) run on gas, but have an electric motor that works with the gasoline engine to improve gas mileage. Less fuel means less pollution and fewer trips to the gas station.

Popular Models of Hybrid Electric Vehicles

Check your local dealership for prices and availability for new and used vehicles.

2020 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid

2020 Hyundai Ioniq

2020 Honda Insight LX Hybrid

2020 Honda Insight LX

2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

2020 Toyota RAV4

Charging

Travel Distance

Clean Air Benefit

Cost

Uses electricity only

Battery Electric Vehicle

Charging

These vehicles don’t need any gas, they only run on electricity. You’ll need a place to charge the battery, either at home, at work, or at a public charging station.

Travel Distance

Most models built after 2016 can travel more than 100 miles on a single charge. Newer models can go more than 200 miles on a single charge.

Clean Air Benefit

Because these vehicles do not use gas, they are the best at keeping our air clean.

Cost

These vehicles cost more up front. But because maintenance and charging cost less than gas, they'll save you more money over time.

Uses gasoline

Hybrid Electric Vehicle

Charging

These cars do not require any charging. They run on gas, but use an electric motor to improve the car’s gas mileage.

Travel Distance

If there is gas in the tank, then the car can drive. Since it’s more fuel efficient, you’ll stop at the gas station less frequently.

Clean Air Benefit

This type of car is more polluting than the other types of electric vehicles, but cleaner than a traditional gasoline vehicle because it uses less gas per mile driven.

Cost

You’ll pay less for this car up front but it will cost more in gas over time.

Uses electricity or gasoline

Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle

Charging

These vehicles can run on both gas and electricity. When the battery runs out of charge, the car switches to use gas.

Travel Distance

When the battery runs out of charge, it uses gas as a back-up. Most models built after 2016 can travel for more than 20 miles on a single charge. Once the charge runs out, the gas engine kicks in and you can drive until your tank is empty.

Clean Air Benefit

These vehicles are much less polluting than regular gas cars, especially when they are running on electricity only.

Cost

This type of car has slightly higher up-front costs than a regular hybrid car, but it can save you more money over time. If you can use the all-electric mode often, then cost savings will be higher.

Photo of a man standing next to his electric car.

I never thought that I would ever be able to afford a hybrid vehicle. Because of this program I now have a reliable vehicle to get to work and I save gas and help the environment."

— Anwar, Richmond

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do I get less money for a hybrid car than a battery electric or plug-in hybrid car?

The cleaner the vehicle you choose, the more money you can get. Battery electric cars are the least polluting cars and provide the most benefits for clean air, so California gives the most money for those. But hybrids and plug-in hybrids are also better for air quality than gas-powered cars. So no matter what car you choose — a hybrid, plug-in, or battery — you're helping keep our air clean. 

Why would I get a hybrid car if I could get more money for a battery electric or plug-in hybrid car? 

If you don't live near a charging station or have the ability to charge at home, a hybrid car may be the best option because it runs on gas. While you may not get as much money up front as other types of electric vehicles, there are many benefits to a hybrid. You'll save money on gas over time, and you'll be helping keep the air clean. 

Will my insurance costs go up with a hybrid car?

Insuring a hybrid is just like insuring a regular gas car. The price of insurance will depend on the cost of the car, combined with other factors like your driving record, where you live, how much you drive, and your deductible. You can get quotes from your insurance company before you make the decision to buy.