Do Hybrid Cars Have Starters?

Last Updated on November 17, 2022 by

Image Source

Hybrid vehicles utilize a lead-acid 12-volt battery, as well as gasoline similar to traditional vehicles. However, these vehicles can also pull their energy from electric batteries.

The engine of a hybrid vehicle does not have the traditional starter motor. That’s because it is the function of the motor generator handles that function. Such vehicles come with hybrid-control software, which shuts their engine off while they stop at traffic signals.

These vehicles automatically restart with the help of the electric drive motor as soon as the motorists release the brake pedals. Hybrid cars thus eliminate their idle conventional engine fuel waste. As such, there is a significant increase in the overall mpg and reduction in tailpipe emissions, particularly on city roads.

Do Toyota hybrids have starters?

While compared to the mild hybrids, the key advantage of Toyota’s full Hybrids are that the 2 power sources functions independently of one another. The mild hybrid system has a lot of similarities with the hybrid system.

A Toyota hybrid vehicle does not utilize traditional starter motor. Rather, a motor generator starts its engine every time. The item has emerged as incredibly dependable during several years of its service. The automaker includes the item as a part of its powertrain warranty.

Today, renowned brands like Subaru and Toyota are being marketed as self-charging hybrid vehicles. These are full hybrid vehicles that change the batteries through a mix of regenerative braking.

They enable their petrol engines to function as generators while on the move.

Do Toyota hybrids have a starter battery?

A majority of cars operate with only one battery. The battery offers the required power for all the electric components of the vehicles.

However, things are different when it is about hybrid vehicles. For instance, a Toyota hybrid vehicle like the Toyota Prius functions slightly differently as compared to other vehicles. To put it simply, these cars have two batteries instead of one.

The smaller one is a 12v battery, which has several similarities with the standard car battery. It helps to start the vehicle and operates various electrical components like the radio and the lights.

The other one is a battery with a higher voltage and reduces the need for gasoline of the vehicle. The battery, which starts the engine of a Toyota hybrid vehicle functions as a starter or generator, if necessary. Incidentally, these vehicles do not have spark plugs.

Do hybrid cars have alternators in general?

Free Monochrome Photo of Hybrid Car charging Stock Photo

 Image Source

The alternator is basically a generator, which generates the electricity stores in the 12-volt battery of a vehicle. It powers the engine’s starter motor and the different computers, power windows, lights, wipers, locks, and several other electrical accessories.

Both hybrid and electric vehicles do not have alternators. Rather, they feature DC-to-DC converters, which recharge their 12-volt batteries. The recharge of plug-in hybrids happens by extracting extra power from a high-voltage battery pack or hybrid battery pack, which powers a hybrid vehicle.

Thus, these vehicles have replaced starter motors, as well as, alternators with generator/motor(s), which start their internal combustion engine. These motors offer all or some mechanical power to the vehicles’ wheels apart from charging large storage batteries.

Do hybrids have starters and alternators?

A hybrid vehicle come with an ISA or Integrated starter-alternator system. Some of its functions are as follows:

  • Recovery of energy during regenerative braking or braking
  • Supporting the primary engine while starting
  • Accelerating
  • Increasing power

Its system also permits powering many other devices, including air conditioning and electric power steering. Many motor experts predict that the manner in which a hybrid vehicle’s alternator-starter system is applied will change in the future.

A more advanced system can also replace this existing system while entirely doing away with the drives we are aware of today.

How does a hybrid car start the engine?

To put it simply, a hybrid car combines a gasoline engine with a minimum of 1 electric motor to put the car in motion. Its system can recapture energy through regenerative braking.

At times, the electric motor of a hybrid vehicle performs all the functions. On other occasions, it is either the gas engine while at other times, both these operate together.

What is the downside of hybrid cars?

Some of the downsides of hybrid cars are as follows:

  • More exorbitantly priced: The initial expenses of hybrid vehicles are much higher as compared to most conventional vehicles.
  • Less power: As is obvious, hybrid cars use a gasoline engine, as well as an electric motor. However, the gasoline engine is the primary power source.

The electric motor and the gasoline engine do not function as strongly. That’s because they operate in non-hybrid vehicles running on gasoline or electric vehicles. However, hybrid cars are apt for drivers who typically ride on city roads for a short distance and avoid driving for a long time.

  •   Unsatisfactory handling: Hybrid models have more machinery parts as compared to the vehicles with conventional starter motors. As, these vehicles have additional weight, as well as higher fuel efficiency.

As such, manufacturers of hybrid cars made smaller batteries and engines to reduce the weight. On the flip side, this led to lower power for hybrid vehicles.

  • Running expenses are higher: Due to the rapid advancements in technology and engines, you may not find mechanics with the necessary expertise. Additionally, a mechanic will possibly charge you slightly more for repair and maintenance works. Also, the maximum running expenses happen while replacing the batteries.

Do electric cars have starters in general?

Free Black Car Stock Photo

Image Source

Electric cars have no need to have starter motors, which is also the answer to the above question. Its electric motor functions as the starter motor. The component is placed between the gearbox and the engine.

These vehicles have a large electric engine that offers power for rotating their wheels.

My hybrid car won’t start – possible problems

Free Black Car Window Panel Stock Photo

Image Source

The following are some of the likely reasons why your hybrid car is not starting:

  • ·      Key fob battery: In case a hybrid car starts using a key fob featuring the push-start button, the car may not start due to the fob’s bad battery.
  • ·      Ignition problem: An engine may also not start if there is a faulty ignition leading to no spark.
  • ·      Oil is overfilled: Many of us overlook the fact that the engine oil is overfilled. Therefore, the excess oil may get into the combustion chamber and crank. As such, there could be problems with your hybrid vehicle starting.
  • ·    Fuel problem: The fuel filter of a hybrid car may get clogged with particles and dirt over time. This dirty filter may lead to the decrease of the fuel pressure. Eventually, the engine power may not be adequate to start.

What can go wrong with a hybrid car?

The popularity of hybrid cars has been increasing by leaps and bounds. However, certain things might go wrong with a hybrid car. Check them out below:

1.    Battery problem

It is true that the owners save more money while using their hybrid cars. However, they have to spend more bucks as batteries have to be replaced more frequently.

That’s because they are weaker than the usual car batteries. In certain cases, the electric generator acts as a regenerative and drive functions.

2.    Low mileage on highways

A hybrid vehicle uses energy if it brakes because of the heat it generates. Its battery then charges. The fact is though people usually brake less while riding on highways.

 It also denotes the hybrid vehicle is unable to charge the battery to soon. Your vehicle may cease to move on the road when you overlook this issue.

3.    Evaporative Emissions System

A common hybrid car issue is due to its evaporative emissions system. Typically, the problem takes place in the form of leaks or system failures.

What happens when the 12-volt battery dies in a hybrid car?

If the hybrid vehicle exhausts its entire battery power, it will automatically move to the ICE drive. The vehicle then starts using diesel/petrol to keep moving.

Additionally, the vehicle will now start charging its 12-volt battery once more, on its own. It also denotes that till the time your vehicle has fuel, there is no need to fret about your out-of-charge battery

Can you drive a hybrid car with a dead battery?

You can still ride your hybrid car though it has a dead battery. However, it is only possible when it features a conventional starter.

On the other hand, a vehicle like Toyota Prius would not start if its battery is fully dead.

Does a Prius have a starter?

The Prius does not have a starter and does not function like most cars do. Out of its two batteries, the smaller one has similar functions as the standard car battery. It starts the vehicle apart from operating the various electrical components.

Are hybrids hard on starters?

The start-stop system is available on hybrid vehicles. However, the traditional starter motor of their engines is unavailable. The motor generator of these vehicles performs this function.

FAQ relating to do hybrid cars have starters?

How does a hybrid car start?

The hybrid engine has certain specialties. As mentioned earlier, a hybrid car does not have a starter unlike a conventional vehicle or a regular car. It has a motor generator, which performs the function of starting the vehicle instead.

A hybrid vehicle starts similar to other push-button start cars. Just apply its brake pedal before pushing the button. Your car is all set to go now. Toyota hybrids offer a special application that works as the vehicle’s remote starter.

Do hybrids have a starter battery?

No, hybrid vehicles do not feature a starter battery. Rather, the vehicle has a high-voltage battery, which runs its electric motor. The other low-voltage battery powers these vehicles’ automotive electronic system.

Can you drive a hybrid car with a dead battery?

Usually, it will be possible for you to ride your hybrid car even when its battery is dead. However, some hybrid cars like Toyota Prius is an exception to this rule.

What are the pros and cons of owning a hybrid car?

Do hybrid cars work? Yes, because their advantages outweigh the disadvantages.


  • These vehicles usually need less maintenance
  • The engine is quiet
  • Save your money in the long run due to less fuel consumption
  • Eco-friendly vehicles


  • Generate fossil fuel emissions
  • Maintenance may be costly
  • Higher upfront expenses

 Key Takeaways

  • The engine of a hybrid vehicle does not have the traditional starter motor. That’s because it is the function of the motor generator handles that function.
  • A Toyota hybrid vehicle like the Toyota Prius have two batteries instead of one.
  • A Toyota hybrid vehicle does not utilize traditional starter motor.
  • Both hybrid and electric vehicles do not have alternators. Rather, they feature DC-to-DC converters, which recharge their 12-volt batteries.
  • Hybrid cars are more exorbitantly priced as compared to conventional cars.
  • A hybrid car does not have a starter like a regular car.
  • If the hybrid vehicle exhausts its entire battery power, it will automatically move to the ICE drive.
Derek Bruce
Follow Me
DB Marketing and SEO, Casa de Serrabodes, CP827, Mexhilhoeira Grande, Faro, Portugal - Bus. Reg: 9996004777432 - Tel: +351 969147910