Regenerative braking is a huge selling point of hybrid vehicles. It means, essentially, that energy lost during braking is used to recharge the battery. Sounds so efficient--but not next to Amtrak’s new, electric ACS64, built by Siemans AG. A six-year rollout of 70 new trains begins now, replacing old engines along the Northeast Corridor and showing what real regenerative braking can do. Get jealous, Prius owners.
During braking, 100% of energy is saved. It’s fed back into the railway’s electrification
system, which is big enough to absorb all that juice.
Peak Horsepower: 10,000
Motor Runs On: More than 6.4 megawatts, equivalent to the power needed for five Super Walmarts
Cost: $6,657,143 (based on Amtrak’s paying $466 million for 70 locomotives)
Excuse for being late:“AMTRAAAAK!!!!!”
During braking, 30% of energy is saved. The small battery can only absorb that much during the car’s short bursts of braking.
Peak Horsepower: 80
Motor Runs On: Max of 650 volts, about what a really strong electric eel can shock you with
Cost: $29,805 (for the Prius Five)
Excuse for being late: Stopped at Starbucks