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Old 04-13-2012, 01:22 AM   #21 (permalink)
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I agree with most comments and especially DieselBeetle.

From my observation, the people who buy hybrids tend to be wealthier. Wealthier people can afford to purchase more fuel. Once the novelty and good feelings of having saved the world have worn off from buying a hybrid, they are back to driving cars that excite them or otherwise project the image they are after. People are typically excited by power, and generally want to project a high class image.

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Old 04-13-2012, 06:07 AM   #22 (permalink)
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CNG has a lot of potential, but I think it is a lot more prevalent in Utah than the rest of the country. It has been less than a year that the Civic GX has been for sale in Ohio after about 15(?) years in select other states. I doubt CNG will be going up in price significantly any time soon, though. Even if fracking was outlawed in the US, Canada will keep pumping it out and there are massive untapped supplies out there.
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Old 04-13-2012, 07:54 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryland View Post
It would also be interesting to see how the used market compares, do people keep their hybrid longer on average?
This is a good point. Polk (author of the study) is in the business of consulting to auto makers, so they talk about new vehicle sales.

And we know that anyone crunching a vehicle decision purely on the numbers (which implies getting good fuel economy is also a motivation) has already ruled out buying a brand new vehicle, hybrid or not, regardless of how wealthy they are.
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Old 04-13-2012, 12:53 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MorphDaCivic View Post
Amazing that my 6 year old Hybrid gets the same mileage as a new model. Not much gain in 6 years.
Six years? Try 12: my 2000 Insight still gets better mpg than anything but a Tesla or Leaf. And the Leaf doesn't have enough range for my driving, and I can't fit two dogs and a backpack into a Tesla :-)
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:59 PM   #25 (permalink)
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As a counter-point to this Polk announcement:

Sales of the hybrid Toyota Prius family doubled in April.

Source: U.S. car sales up in April on strength of small, fuel-efficient vehicles - NY Daily News
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Old 05-02-2012, 04:58 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Compare my Fiesta to my brother's Prius. he bought the Prius for $14k with 29k miles. Paint was a little rough but it cleaned up fairly nice. Now 3 years later it has 80k miles. Not sure what it is worth but probably around 10K. Cost new probably 23-25K.

The Fiesta was 10 with salvage rebuilt title and 3770 miles. After 2k miles my average mileage is just over 46, EPA 38 highway. I don't do serious hypermiling just mostly non obvious stuff.

The fuel mileage on these two cars is very close to the same. The potential resale value is another thing altogether. A dead battery in the Prius is a dead Prius. A dead battery in my Fiesta is about $75.

What are both of the cars worth when they have 150k miles on them? The Fiesta may actually be worth more at that mileage. What is the value of a 2001 Prius and a 2001 Focus with 150 k miles (no Fiesta in the US in 2001)? Probably about the same.

Around here when gas prices spike you can see the change in the vehicle population on the road. Lots of people here bought smaller higher mileage cars in 2008-09 to get out of the real gas hogs. The pickup trucks got parked and the smaller car did most of the transportation jobs.

With cars reaching an average age of over 10 years, you have to consider the break even point in decades and the hybrids loose all of their cost premium over that period of time. At 33 MPG I need 3000 gallons of fuel to get to 100k miles. At 50 I need 2000.
Does the premium price justify the fuel saved? If the premium was $4K then you break even at 100k with the mileages given.

Unfortunately with the present state of the economy and little job security compared to decades ago, I doubt you will see people paying an extra several thousand dollars for a hybrid when the break even point is so far in the future, an uncertain future for sure.

Most would shop the used car market for an older car at a considerable price savings over new. This is demonstrated by the present state of the used car market. Find a nice one fairly priced and they are gone quickly.

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Old 05-02-2012, 05:26 PM   #27 (permalink)
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AOL media says a lot of things. Lets just leave it at that.
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Old 05-02-2012, 06:45 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Mechanic View Post
The fuel mileage on these two cars is very close to the same.
That's one example. Not an unrealistic one, but nor is mine:

Come drive up near D.C. You'll be getting mid 30s in the Fiesta and 50 in the Prius. Suddenly the almost equal mileage becomes quite a difference.

Also, I 100% believe the Prius is a nicer (and larger) car than the new Fiesta. Someone in search of good gas mileage/low cost of ownership may cross-shop them, but there are quite a few that would put the Fiesta in a lower class and not consider it.

FWIW, although the blue-book values seem to be somewhat close (Prius vs. Focus), I have never seen a Focus hold its value that well, while the Priuses I have looked at used all seemed to be priced quite high.
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:06 PM   #29 (permalink)
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I lived right at Tyson's Corner and worked at American Service Center, 585 North Glebe Rd in Arlington in 1984, Mercedes and Ferrari dealer. I drove my 84 CRX 1.5 into work on route 123, Chain Bridge Road, and averaged 44 MPG in the CRX. I could come very close to that today in the Fiesta but I have no desire to live anywhere near DC. Tidewater is bad enough, but the wife refuses to live to far from a Wal Mart. If it was up to me I would live in the boonies.

There was a 2001 Prius with a bad hybrid battery (not operational) in the DC area for sale last fall, stayed on Craigslist for quite a while at an asking price of just over $2k. When the warranty on the hybrid battery ends most people are not really interested in the hybrids anymore. Recent gas prices have driven the prices of all economy cars up. Remember the Metro on ebay that sold for $8000 back in 2008 when gas got close to $4 a gallon last time. I think that was close to what it sold for new, and you will never see a 12-15 year old hybrid go for that kind of money.

Cars loaded with options are nice when they are new, but when you have window regulators costing $400 to replace, many cars die from "option death" when mechanically they are still in fairly good shape.

Look at the price of a 2000-05 Echo stripper compared to the Prius from the same year. The Echo is worth more until you get past 2003.

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Old 05-03-2012, 08:30 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Well, things have changed a lot since 1984 I'd be impressed to see 44mpg average from the Fiesta without serious hypermiling.

And I don't blame you for not wanting to live or drive here...

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