You may have noticed some strange vehicle terms and acronyms around the place, including this site! These are descriptive terms for vehicles and how they are propelled along.

ICE cars are the most common these days although you could say they are in their twilight years. ICE stands for Internal Combustion Engine, and covers all vehicles that burn fuel (petrol, diesel, LPG) to travel.

BEV cars are the new high technology type, and the acronym stands for Battery Electric Vehicle. These vehicles only use a large battery for locomotion.

PHEV cars are a hybrid type that uses both an engine and a small battery. The acronym stands for Plugin Hybrid Electric Vehicle. This means that you can both fill it up with fuel, and charge it with a plug or electrical connector.

Hybrid or Mild Hybrid cars are the final type and are similar to PHEV except you cannot charge them externally. They use some of the fuel engine power to charge a small battery internally to be used in stop/start traffic.

  ICE Car Hybrid Car PHEV Car BEV Car
Familiarity High High Medium Low
Range High High High / Medium Low
Fill Up Time Low Low Low / Medium High
Cost To Buy Low Medium Medium High
Air Pollution High Medium Medium Low
Servicing / Maintenance High High / Medium High Low
Travel Running Costs High Medium Medium Low
Performance Low /Medium Medium Medium High
Weather Affect Low Low Medium High
Noise Pollution High Medium Medium Low
  ICE Cars
Pros ICE cars are the most familiar to use as they have been with us for over 100 years. They also have the longest range (especially diesels) with the shortest time to fill up (5 mins). They are the cheapest to buy on the whole, and are affected least by the weather, as temperature does not affect the range.
Cons ICE cars generally cost more to run per mile, an average of 20p per mile compared to 5p per mile for electric cars. They also cost more to service and maintain as there are many more engine parts that can go wrong. Air pollution is high with exhaust gases, and noise pollution from engine noise.
BEV Cars
Pros BEV cars are low polluting, both from noise and air, and are both clean and quiet. Servicing and maintenance will generally be cheaper as the electric motor is much simpler in design. Running costs are also much cheaper, often 1/4 of an ICE vehicle. Performance is generally better and the power curve is straight, whereas an ICE car needs more revs for more power.
Cons Range and charging time are the biggest issues for BEVs at the moment, but improving all the time. A full charge still takes hours though, not minutes, and range for some BEVs can be as low as 100 miles. Cold temperatures can adversely affect the battery also, and energy is needed to cool or heat the cabin.