The Stig’s flying hybrids
The Stig tries to make ultra-frugal hybrids oversteer, and then jumps them over a humpbacked bridge
Posted: 09 Nov 2010
Technically, they are quite different under the skin, and we should be sure we understand those differences before we get them airborne. The Toyota's system, called Hybrid Synergy Drive, has an 80bhp electric motor, which it uses as its main motivating force. It can move off with this engine from the lights - if you're gentle - and will run comfortably at town speeds using it and it alone... that is, with the 1.8-litre, 98bhp petrol engine completely separate and switched off. The petrol engine cuts in when needed and does so incredibly smoothly and almost inaudibly. Quite brilliant. So, this is, in character if not its makeup, an electric car with petrol assistance.