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Old 05-28-2009, 12:25 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I liked the concept of the Prius, and had one for 24 hours when a car rental place "upgraded" me. I averaged 54.9 mpg over the New Jersey mountains, despite this being my first time with the car.

I just don't know if I'd want to have to repair one. Other than spark plugs, pretty much everything else involves replacing computer modules.

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Old 05-28-2009, 07:16 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Last year or the year before, the Prius won JD power or consumer reports catagory for the most reliable car on the road. Repairs are about as uncommon as they get.
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Old 05-28-2009, 09:53 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Ditto, just dropped in on the honda web site. Brand new Fit auto trans, AC for 15,550 MSRP.

If you go in with an outside creditor and tell them that you have a loan for 15000 flat and thats all you've got you can probably walk out the door with it without any other fees. I'm not so sure though because Honda is doing pretty well. If you have 2 dealers in town you can at least try it on both of them wait a few days and then go back and try it.

It was the fit basic model with the auto trans standard features include AC "with air filtration(?)"
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Old 05-28-2009, 09:58 PM   #14 (permalink)
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If you buy a Prius you are selling out on Honda.

You are selling out on the rest of us loyal Honda FTW fans as well. You need to go sit and the corner and think about what you just said.

Selling out Honda for a toyota. . .-shakeshead-
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Old 05-29-2009, 01:11 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Ditto, just dropped in on the honda web site. Brand new Fit auto trans, AC for 15,550 MSRP.

If you go in with an outside creditor and tell them that you have a loan for 15000 flat and thats all you've got you can probably walk out the door with it without any other fees. I'm not so sure though because Honda is doing pretty well. If you have 2 dealers in town you can at least try it on both of them wait a few days and then go back and try it.

It was the fit basic model with the auto trans standard features include AC "with air filtration(?)"
Air filtration = cabin air filter behind the glove box.

Try different dealers. My goal was to get a Yaris 4-door auto ($15,505 MSRP) for $12,500 out the door: taxes, registration, everything. Two dealers laughed at me. The third (a relatively large dealer) came back after about 15 minutes with an offer of $13,100 out the door. Just have to persevere and know exactly what you want. Somewhere is a Honda dealer hungry enough for the business--especially if the '10's are around the corner and they have some '09's on the lot.
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Old 05-29-2009, 01:39 AM   #16 (permalink)
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"You're killin' me smalls!"

This is my Fantasy Island rationalization, Boss:

I can get a lot more used. I'm not really dissing Honda by buying used (all that much). Granted, I've never owned a Toyota, and Honda have earned my respect immensely over the years, sooo....

For me, it's reliability, efficiency, configuration, and options -- all wrapped up.

True, the base Fit is 15.5K (and has A/C once you dig to find it). BUT, once you add mats, an armrest (for Pete's sake), and a delivery, we're up to $16,599. Maybe I could get them down to high 15's -- so OK. But what about FE? I've heard owners rather disappointed in this category.

I'm playing devil's advocate here, so bear with me. This really tears me in half turning my back on Honda (so to speak). If it's any consolation, Honda Finance is still getting payments on the TSX for another 2 years or so!

To answer the strip-down question: I don't like the Yaris' center speedo and Nissan's build quality and interior components stink on even the 350Z (IMHO).

So what does that leave? A nicely equipped, 3-year old Prius. Top Gear couldn't kill the 4th Gen Toyota "Hilux" pickup. Has that translated to modern day?

I'll be the first to admit it -- I'm not a very good Hypermiler with advanced technique (maybe mild-to-moderate). Mods save me in that final tally. That means a hybrid is the ultimate mod. From the factory.

Let me quote a review from myself in a "previous life", regarding the Prius rental a couple years ago (it's contradicts the argument, but stick with me here):

So, do I like this car?



Mt. Hood National Forest, Oregon

After about 250 miles and ~54.x MPG, I think "maybe". It's nice to rent, but I would I want to own one?

Pros:
-Of course, FE
-Great Handling: feels light and maneuverable
-Base models come well equipped with safety and amenities
-Nice heads-up display for the speed, and center control screen is modern

Cons:
-Great FE comes with technique (something John Q. Public isn't generally going to do), but it's better than nothing.
-Complicated drive mechanism and battery set. Rough operation (engine and transitional engagement)
-There's about 1mm of padding for your elbows -- kinda cheap for an interior.

I really enjoyed driving this car -- it'll be tough giving it back tomorrow. Climbing mountainous grades and coasting back down on my scenic drive in Oregon was a pleasant trip. But over the course, it became apparent that the Prius might leave too much to the machine and less to the driver.

There are groups out there getting great mileage in these cars, I agree. I really respect the feature of coasting up to a traffic light with the engine off, and having it start-up automatically to build speed -- but how does this compare with the essence of a Civic VX, for example? I like running through the gears, feeling more connected with the road, and being able to modify a well-understood blueprint. But at the same time, it nearly doubles the FE in my daily driver.

With the Prius, you don't know what to expect. You can definitely feel the ICE kick-in when you need it. Keeping up with traffic requires more fuel than I'd like. The CVT-HSD is unnerving at times + the regenerative braking is a bit gruff. It's hard to drive smoothly. Plus, I expected more EV-only power, especially from a standing start -- it was weak, and generally prompted the engine to kick in. EV-only operation is a slow-go.

So, if you can master hypermiling in other cars, this one is no different. P&G and "Warp-Stealth" is a piece of cake. Making a significant improvement over EPA compared to a regular gasser, will be very difficult.

I honestly don't want to discourage folks from buying this car. It helps with FE, emissions, and advances the technology in each generation of vehicle. I just don't think I'll be running to the Toyota dealer tomorrow to buy one. Perhaps as the technology evolves and branches out into different models, it will appeal to this driver. I guess I'll cross that bridge when I come to it...



Shepperd's Dell -- Columbia River Gorge, Oregon


To be honest, that was back in my old-school, manual gearbox, straight-up gasser days. A big concern is a loss of community from Eco-Modding. Hybrids tend to subtract a lot of that wrench-turning, visceral, brainstorming modification that comes easily with simple gassers. But what about that Fit and the electronic throttle, etc, etc? Perhaps the same, I'm afraid...

RH77
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Old 05-29-2009, 01:50 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RH77 View Post
To be honest, that was back in my old-school, manual gearbox, straight-up gasser days. A big concern is a loss of community from Eco-Modding. Hybrids tend to subtract a lot of that wrench-turning, visceral, brainstorming modification that comes easily with simple gassers. But what about that Fit and the electronic throttle, etc, etc? Perhaps the same, I'm afraid...
I had a lot of the same reactions to the Prius. Really, mild acceleration is dropping this thing to 17 mpg? Really? But once you learn how it runs, you suddenly find 54 mpg easy.

You do have a couple of ecomods possible, including the EV Button and eventually maybe a Calcars or similar kit.
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Old 05-29-2009, 03:15 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Clev -

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clev View Post
I had a lot of the same reactions to the Prius. Really, mild acceleration is dropping this thing to 17 mpg? Really? But once you learn how it runs, you suddenly find 54 mpg easy.

You do have a couple of ecomods possible, including the EV Button and eventually maybe a Calcars or similar kit.
Oh yeah, lots of upside to the Prius. I forgot about that.

Aesthetically I like the new Insight more, but I can't see anything wrong with a good used Prius.

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Old 05-29-2009, 08:19 AM   #19 (permalink)
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There is tons you can do to a Prius. Less so in the way of turning bolts, but much more on the electronics side to bend HSD to do your every bidding (same with the Insight and IMA). That is where you regain your control of the vehicle and manipulate the gooey hybridness to amazing FE. I'm biased though, I really want a Prius.
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Old 05-29-2009, 09:30 AM   #20 (permalink)
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The thing about a Prius. . .for most people. . .

Is it won't go quickly if you ask it to. If I stomp My Del Sol to the floor it will go, screech the tires and the front end will bounce a little.

Driving even on ecomod is not ALWAYS about FE. Maybe it is for you guys but on occassions I love to go out and roll through the mountains with the gas mashed to the floor. I'll still get above 26 mpg doing this. . .while the prius if it does that gets sub 20. On the other hand I can crank 36-37 with light steady-state driving, with a few upcoming projects 54 might well be within range. . .

RH you could get a used Fit with AC. I'm sure there are some of those around somewhere(not from a dealer). If you could find a lightly used Fit from another consumer I'm sure you could pull them out for 12. The Fit gets alright gas mileage in stock state with moderately heavy driving, with light driving steady state, some cheap aero boosts, what reductions can be had, and maybe wheel skirts you can probably beat the Integ. . .

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