How do plug-in hybrid vehicles work?

Battery, driving range, charging: between combustion and electric, understanding how plug-in hybrid cars work requires some explanation.

What are the differences between how hybrids and plug-in hybrids work?

electric plug-in hybrid

E-Tech Plug-in: towards 100% electric

Contrary to full hybrids, you plug-in rechargeable hybrid vehicles to fully charge them.
They have higher capacity batteries that are charged with regenerative braking. However, in order to take full advantage of all their features, they need to be plugged in and charged like electric vehicles.

This allows you to drive in full electric mode over long distances. You also benefit from a greater selection of driving modes, especially SPORT mode which can be found under the MULTI-SENSE settings.

What is a plug-in hybrid vehicle’s driving range?

Plug-in hybrid vehicle driving range

a battery with a great driving range

E-TECH plug-in vehicles are equipped with a 9.8 kWh (400 V) battery with a driving range of up to 30 miles (WLTP) mixed cycle in full electric mode.

By combining two electric motors with a combustion engine, E-TECH vehicles start purely on electricity, without relying on the combustion engine. With this higher capacity battery, driving a hybrid is a pleasure.


How long does it take for the plug-in hybrid battery to run low?

E-TECH technology optimises your vehicle’s electrical usage as much as possible when braking, decelerating and charging.

As the vehicle slows down, the electric engine acts as a generator. The energy produced when decelerating is recovered and transferred back to the battery.
When braking, the electric engine recovers surplus energy and transfers it back to the battery: everything is designed to keep your battery from getting low!

How do you charge a plug-in hybrid?

Plug-in hybrid vehicles can be connected to a power source so the battery receives a stronger charge than that provided under regenerative braking and deceleration. In this case, the process is like that of an electric vehicle:

  • Plug your vehicle into a public charging point, available in some car parks, car-sharing networks, motorway service stops and even in some dealerships;
  • Plug your electric vehicle into a household outlet or into charging unit designed for faster charges.

Can you drive a plug-in hybrid even if the battery is not charged?

You can definitely drive your plug-in hybrid without a charged battery. Although it is designed as a combustion-assisted electric vehicle, the battery always has some energy stored away thanks to its self-charging technology.

Discover our E-TECH Plug-In technology

technologie hybride Renault