Another hidden advantage of the hybrid car

We bought a 2007 Toyota Camry hybrid in the spring of 2007, and I have blogged on my experiences with it numerous times in the past (brand new feelings, disappointing mileagehypermiling, tire efficiency, taxes,).

One nice advantage is that some maintenance costs are reduced due to the use of the electric motor.  For one, the gas engine runs less and more efficiently than in a regular car, so one can stretch out oil changes a little.

The one that caught my attention recently, though, is brakes.  Our car now has 66,000 miles on it.  When I took it in for regular maintenance the front brake pads, which are still original, look great.  Since many of the hybrid cars on the road use regenerative braking, the brake pads are rarely employed to slow the car.  Instead, the energy to slow the car is used to charge the battery.

So not only do we enjoy the added efficiency of harvesting the brake energy, we also almost never have to purchase new brake pads.  Sweet!

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