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Switching to hybrid: Know your finance options and vehicles on the market

Learning the terminology is half the battle

 LET’S BE HONEST, the terminology surrounding electric vehicles can be confusing and that most certainly extends to hybrid cars. However, the switch to a hybrid, including financing one, is often more straightforward than people might realise, with both cars and financing having a great deal in common with petrol and diesel choices.

Donal Murphy, Managing Director at Bluestone Motor Finance, knows switching to a hybrid car is a logical next step for many people:

With the average daily commuting distance of 45 KMs,  many hybrids will cover this without the need to engage the petrol or diesel engine, saving money on fuel while still providing the range safety net of the engine. At the same time, owners can get comfortable on how to recharge their car.

Donal Murphy17 Donal Murphy, MD of Bluestone Motor Finance

Let’s get down to business. As a starting point, it’s important to know your HEVs from your PHEVs.

Yes, there are plenty of acronyms, but let’s try and simplify things:

HEV (Hybrid Electric Vehicle) : An overarching term, a hybrid car is one that uses more than one means of propulsion – that means combining a petrol or diesel engine with an electric motor. There are various types of hybrid as noted below.

PHEV (Plug-in hybrid electric vehicle) : A PHEV is exactly what its name suggests: it’s a hybrid car with a battery pack that can be plugged in to charge it up. PHEVs have both a petrol or diesel combustion engine and an electric motor. However, the battery pack that powers a PHEV’s motor is larger than that in a standard hybrid, giving it the advantage that it can run for longer on pure electric power alone.

Rex (Range-extended EV) : Similar to a PHEV, a Rex has a battery and small electric motor, it is different to a PHEV in that a Rex drives on battery power until it has depleted its energy, at this time the small motor kicks in to recharge the battery.

Full Hybrid or “Self-Charging” Hybrid : A 100% fossil fuelled hybrid car. A small battery is charged through regenerative braking that generates some electric power in combination with a combustion engine, but the car’s energy originates from petrol. The electric motor can only power the car itself for short periods at low speeds.

Mild Hybrid : Mild hybrids also have a small electric motor, but unlike full hybrids, it is solely used to assist the petrol engine. The car cannot run on battery alone. 

Financing a Hybrid Car

Financing the purchase of a hybrid is the same as financing a conventional car and can be set up quickly and easily at the supplying dealer, subject to credit and affordability checking. The main financing options include;

Hire Purchase (HP)

Under a HP agreement car buyers can be asked to pay an upfront deposit and then make fixed monthly payments for an agreed period. With Bluestone Motor Finance, a deposit may not be necessary and we can offer terms of up to 72 months to help monthly affordability. As the name suggests, the definition of hire purchase is hiring the car until you’ve made the final monthly payment – which then means the car is then owned outright. 

Personal Contract Purchase (PCP) 

An option that allows people to purchase a car with a deposit and, like HP, repay the finance with fixed monthly payments. Unlike HP, a PCP agreement can have at the end, a balloon payment (also known as the Guaranteed Future Value). The balloon payment can have the effect of reducing monthly payments, since it is not necessary to pay for part of the car until the end of the contract, but the final balloon payment can be large. Always check the terms and conditions and ensure mileage limits meet your needs.

If you need further information or would like to make a Hire Purchase application, the team at Bluestone Motor Finance and our extensive dealer network are here to help. Please visit bluestonemotorfinance.ie for contact details.

Bluestone Motor Finance recently pulled off a major coup at the Asset Finance Connect Summer Awards by winning the Customer Journey Excellence Award. Collaborating with their nationwide dealer network and digital partners, including DoneDeal, Bluestone consistently strives to identify opportunities to simplify the car buying journey and experience.

afc 2022 Summer Awards winner graphic-01


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