March 19, 2008
The most commonly used and commercialized hybrid automobile combines an electrically
powered motor with a conventional gasoline engine. According to Tim Maxwell, professor
of mechanical engineering and co-head of the advanced vehicle engineering lab at Texas
Tech University, a simple hybrid technology was first developed for use in only a
handful of cars, in the early 1900s, when gasoline engines were not able to generate
enough power on their own. By 1915, gasoline engines were powerful enough that it
was easier to build cars without the complicated hybrid technology.