At Bristow Autos we can cater for all your Hybrid and Electric Vehicle needs to manufacturer standards, it is common misconception that only a main dealer can look after these vehicles.

We have the latest diagnostic equipment and tools, so you can be sure your hybrid or electric vehicle is in safe hands. We can cater for servicing, repairs, diagnostics and more in depth fault finding. Our technicians receive in house training on hybrid/electric vehicle systems and hold an IMI Qualification (Level 3 Award).



Fully electric vehicles only have one power source and rely solely on the electric motor to drive the vehicle.

The battery is charged by plugging into 240v mains, however it is still charged during the driving cycle by means of using the motor/generator as a regenerative brake when the brake pedal is applied. (Example Nissan leaf).



A Hybrid is a vehicle with an alternative power source capable of driving the vehicle.

There are different types of Electric Hybrid system.

  • Parallel – Electric motor only assists internal combustion engine. Electric motor doesn’t create enough power to drive vehicle by itself. (Example early Honda hybrid).
  • Series – Internal combustion engine only drives a generator which charges the battery then the electric motor drives the vehicle. Battery can also be charged by plugging into mains power. (Example Vauxhall hybrid).
  • Combination – Electric motor is used to pull away and internal combustion engine used for cruising or both used together for acceleration and load conditions. (Example Toyota and Lexus Hybrid Synergy Drive).

When brakes are applied the motor/generator is used as a regenerative brake which slows the vehicle and captures the energy, storing it away in the battery ready for the next time you pull away. This makes a hybrid more efficient as this energy would normally be wasted as heat through your brakes.

Most Hybrids use a small internal combustion engine that is very efficient (Atkinson cycle engine) this type of engine lacks in low RPM power but works very well when used in combination with an electric motor/generator. This engine is also easier to start because it has a lower compression ratio and is therefore well suited to hybrid vehicles that have to stop and start frequently.



  • On certain models pressing EV button will keep vehicle in electric mode for longer where possible (dependent on battery state of charge).
  • Most Hybrid/Electric vehicles have air vents in the boot area and draw ambient air to cool the battery. You should try and keep luggage clear of these vents as it could restrict airflow causing battery temperature to increase, resulting in limited battery power.
  • It is recommended not to leave a hybrid vehicle for a long period of time without use. This could leave the High Voltage battery in a discharged state, causing damage to battery cells or leaving you unable get the vehicle going again without having the vehicle removed for specialist charging.
  • A Hybrid should NEVER be towed as this could cause damage to the hybrid system. Unless drive wheels are lifted (for example front wheels lifted on front wheel drive vehicles).
  • Hybrid vehicles can suffer from Brake disc corrosion, this is because the braking force applied to the conventional hub braking system is considerably less as it is used in combination with the motor/generator as a regenerative brake.

If you would like to book your vehicle in for hybrid and electric vehicle servicing, or would like a quote, please do not hesitate Contact us or call us on 01908 360999.