Regenerative braking systems are equipped to hybrid vehicles and electric-only automobiles. The goal of this system is to capture the energy created when braking, allowing the battery to be charged from the process.
Here are the pros and cons of having a regenerative braking system equipped to your vehicle.
List of the Pros of a Regenerative Braking System
1. It improves the fuel economy of the vehicle.
The amount of fuel consumed can be dramatically reduced with this type of braking system. The International Journal of Vehicle Design noted in 2011 that fuel consumption covering the NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) was improved by 25%.
2. It allows for traditional friction-based brakes.
A friction braking system is included with a regenerative system to ensure a vehicle is able to stop in time.
3. It prolongs the charge of the battery.
Once the energy is captured by the regenerative brakes, the energy is used to recharge the batteries of the vehicle. Because this energy would normally be lost, it allows each vehicle to experience a prolonged charge while driving.
4. It reduces the wear and tear on the braking system.
Because an electric drive train is part of this system, the greater efficiency given to the braking allows for a reduced level of wear on the brakes of the vehicle. With standard friction brakes, there is no way to accomplish this benefit.
List of the Cons of a Regenerative Braking System
1. It offers a sliding scale of benefits.
The effects of regenerative braking decrease with the speed a vehicle is traveling. At low speeds, friction brakes are required to bring most vehicles to a complete stop. That means there is still energy being lost.
2. It offers a different feel to the driver.
Regenerative braking systems feel different to drivers who are used to traditional systems. The brake pedal on the vehicle often feels soft, described as “mushy” by many drivers. Until you get used to the new system, some may have a lack of confidence in the capabilities of their brakes.
The pros and cons of a regenerative braking system offer drivers new benefits and cost-savings opportunities. It’s one primary limitation is the requirement for friction-based brakes during low speed situations.
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.