EV vs PHEV: Which Is Right For You

November 5th, 2022 by

Are you tired of making frequent stops at the gas station? Have you been considering switching to an electric vehicle? Driving an electric vehicle (EV) or a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV)? Driving an EV can be a great option for many drivers, but there are some things to know about before purchasing one. For example, many people ask, “What’s the difference between an EV and a PHEV?” This is a great question, and we’ve put together this guide to help you understand the difference between an EV versus a PHEV.

What Is an EV?

An electric vehicle doesn’t need gasoline. In fact, there’s no gas tank on an electric vehicle at all. Instead, these cars are equipped with a battery and an electric motor that provide enough power to get you where you need to be. While no gas is required, the battery does need to be recharged. You can do this at a public recharging station or at your home through various charging options, which vary based on model and manufacturer. Discuss your in-home charging options with our team at our Spokane, WA Hyundai dealership to better understand how to charge your vehicle. We also have several blog posts covering EV charger stages and different ways to charge your EV!

What Is a PHEV?

PHEV stands for plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. These types of carsPHEVs use both gasoline and battery power to operate. Therefore, they’re equipped with an internal combustion gas engine, an electric motor, and a battery. They also have regenerative braking systems that allow the battery to charge some when you brake. A PHEV will run off its battery power while it’s charged, and when the battery runs down, the vehicle seamlessly switches over to gas to keep you going even farther. It’s similar to a hybrid, but a PHEV plugs in to recharge its battery more like an all-electric vehicle.


So an EV uses electric power alone, while a PHEV uses both gas and electric power. But what does this mean for you? Well, even though a PHEV shares some similarities with an EV, there are differences in the activities that each of these vehicle types is better suited for. Let’s explore the capabilities of EVs and PHEVs when it comes to long-distance driving and city driving to see how they compare.

Long-distance Driving

If you commonly drive more than 100 miles in a day, then you’ll probably want to consider a PHEV. In a PHEV, the engine will switch to using gasoline when the battery gets too low, which allows you to keep driving without having to recharge or stop for fuel.

On average, a PHEV can travel about 60 miles on a full charge and between 200 and 300 miles on a tank of gas. The average EV can travel 194 miles on a full charge, while; lower-end models only get about 85 miles on a full charge, and high-end models sometimes get over 400 miles. However, driving conditions will affect both estimates, as will weather and the age of the battery and weather. It’s also important to consider the availability of charging stations because they aren’t found in all areas yet.

City Driving

For commuters with shorter daily drives, an EV may be perfect. The regenerative braking system can work well to recharge the battery when you pull up to stop signs and red lights. Most people who live close to their work will only need to recharge their batteries every couple of days or overnight. Cities often have more public charging stations available, making it easy to find a place to recharge your battery. These stations are typically located at places you already go, such as supermarkets, libraries, and parks.

A PHEV can also perform well in the city, taking you farther between charges and fuel-ups. Both vehicle types can get you around town with ease, and you can conveniently charge their batteries from home or in public.

Popular PHEVs

Check out some of the most popular PHEVs on the market:

Hyundai Tucson

Aside from being stylish and sophisticated, the Hyundai Tucson Plug-in Hybrid is modern and fresh. You’ll enjoy up to 33 miles of all-electric driving range before you have to charge the battery or switch to using gas. It showcases all the latest tech and safety features to ensure you feel secure and stay entertained.

Hyundai Santa Fe

In the Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-in Hybrid, you’ll enjoy up to 30 miles of all-electric range. But you can drive with confidence knowing that you have a gas engine to keep you going if you need it. The regenerative braking system converts energy from your braking to power the battery.

Popular EVs

These are some great options if you’re looking for an EV:

Hyundai Kona Electric

You can get the Hyundai Kona Electric in one of two trim levels: the SEL or the Limited. Either one will provide you with an estimated 258-mile driving range. You may be able to go a few days without charging, depending on your driving habits and distances.

Hyundai Ioniq 5

There are four sleek trim levels for the Hyundai Ioniq 5 — SE Standard Range, SE, SEL, and Limited. The base model has an estimated driving range of 220 miles, but upgrading to a higher trim will increase the driving range to 303 miles. This makes it worth considering the extra cost.

Which Model Is Right for You?

To decide which model is right for you, ask yourself the following questions:

  • How many miles do I drive each day?
  • Are there charging stations near where I live?
  • Do I want to eliminate gas entirely?
  • What’s my monthly car budget?
  • Are there any EV or PHEV models at dealerships near me?

The answers to these questions can help you decide between an EV and a PHEV. However, if you want the efficiency of a hybrid but you don’t want to buy a plug-in model, the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid is a fantastic option. This sedan gets 50 mpg in the city and 54 mpg on the highway. Not to mention it’s a luxurious sedan.

EVs and PHEVs At Spokane Hyundai

If you have more questions about owning an electric or hybrid vehicle, we can help. Stop by our Hyundai dealership in Spokane, WA where our friendly team can answer any questions you might have, schedule a test drive, or see your options in person. We can also assist you with securing the financing you need to drive an efficient vehicle and show you how making the switch to an EV or PHEV can save you money!