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It is a sad but largely foreseen reality for us motorheads; government policies, new environmental norms, and a larger need to take care of our planet will eventually catch up. And so it has. The latest trend, as we see, is the reduction of cylinders and the adoption of the hybrid system. Useful, if you are like me and love the extra boost when tackling traffic.

Some major players hopping on the environment train include premium makers like Bentley, who switched from a W12 to a hybrid W8. Bentley calls it electro-charging, using a battery to act as a turbocharger. Porsche’s latest 911 is a hybrid engine, yet it delivers even more performance by accelerating the car quicker than ever before. And, this isn’t the end!

In the Indian scenario, cars like the Innova Hycross, Urban Cruiser Hyryder, Grand Vitara, and the City e:HEV garner quite a lot of attention with their fuel efficiency figures. The 2024 Swift begins a new journey, with a new 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engine. When we drove the car, we called it ‘familiar’ and it was. The power felt the same, and the car nearly went the same. It is still something that we already know. The new engine only produces slightly less power than its predecessor which does not show that much of a difference. Hence the question, are we worried about absolutely nothing?

Yes and no. It is the same feeling we had when the two strokes went away (legally); we felt the speed difference sitting on a four-stroke. Yet, the power has increased significantly, torque even more so. Sure, it does not make that spine-shivering sound but we had the next best thing. And that is what mattered!

We are on the cusp of another evolution, less internal combustion and more battery power. Cars like the Reva, Hyryder, and Ioniq 5 are examples of the future battery powertrain. Hybrids are for those who want to sit on the fence, finding benefit in both. So, is our passion under assault by an unbeatable enemy? No, it’s just evolution and some hard passionate people who feel the brunt of memories being replaced.