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How is the AC unit on the hybrid powered? The other day I was in a very slow drive-thru, which took a long time, and the engine didn't start for at least ten minutes. But it was a warm day, and the air from the vents never warmed up. That would seem to say that the AC compressor is electric. Is that correct? If so, is it powered off the 12V battery or the traction battery? My guess would be the 12V system, since I'd imagine it's easier to find a 12V motor than a 250V motor off the shelf.
 

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Eco mode changes AC usage on the gas model as well, but the difference in the two systems is the Hybrid AC compressor is electric motor driven by the (244V IIRC) Hybrid traction battery instead of by a belt driven pulley on the gas version as in other conventional vehicles. If anyone looks at the 12V battery, you'll see it's small, about the size of the battery on my 42" lawn mower which has 350CCA(cold cranking amps), the Hybrid 12V battery is rated at 355CCA


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The compressor is inverter-driven and probably operates somewhere between 30%-100% capacity depending on demand. This is unlike a belt-driven compressor that only operates at 100% capacity.
 
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