Optimizing the combustion engine

Mild hybrid technology

At Volvo Cars we are driven by a desire to make things better. Our move towards electrification includes pre electric cars, plug-in hybrids and now mild hybrid propulsion systems which deliver a smoother driving experience and a new level of efficiency.

A new generation of power

Mild hybrids offer an effective powertrain solution that actively reduces engine load, thereby improving fuel economy and improving the driving experience. A mild hybrid combines an electric motor, a 48 volt battery and a 12 volt/48 volt converter with an internal combustion engine. The electric motor acts as a starter to rev-up the engine smoothly. It also works as a generator, collecting energy recuperated by braking, which is stored in the 48 volt battery. This provides electric power to enable better acceleration.

Frequently asked questions

  • What is a mild hybrid?

    A mild hybrid is also considered to be an electric car. Mild hybrids use both a combustion engine and an electric motor to reduce emissions and improve fuel economy. They do this by using energy stored in a 48-volt battery that is generated by braking. This energy is then used to boost the combustion engine during start-up and take-off.

  • Does the electric motor propel a mild hybrid?

    No. The electric motor is there to assist the engine and to reduce the amount of work it needs to do.

  • What is the main benefit of a mild hybrid?

    A mild hybrid will offer reduced fuel consumption and thereby lower emissions. Mild hybrids are generally more affordable than full hybrids or plug-in hybrids.

  • What is the difference between a mild hybrid, a full hybrid and a plug-in hybrid?

    A mild hybrid uses the electric motor to assist the combustion engine. A full hybrid has a larger electric motor and battery than a mild hybrid. A full hybrid can power the car using the electric motor for short distances and recharges its battery using the engine or through regenerative braking. A plug-in hybrid can be recharged by literally plugging it into a home charging station or using a public charging station. A plug-in hybrid offers a greater pure electric range thanks to a larger battery pack and electric motor. A plug-in hybrid will meet the daily commuting needs of many people.

  • What is the best hybrid car for my daily commute?

    It depends upon the distance you travel to work and the level of electrification you wish to have. All hybrids offer the benefits of lower fuel consumption and emissions and even lower road taxation in some countries. Many countries now offer incentives to purchase an electrified vehicle. Please check with your Volvo dealer for more locally relevant information.