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Old 06-23-2009, 04:38 PM   #11 (permalink)
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If you are trying to get out of debt (and I'm a Dave Ramsey fan), then the $4500 rebate still doesn't make for a great deal. Either keep the old clunker clunking or swap it for a $3,000 used car. I got my Corolla for about $3200 last year, just as gas was hitting $4/gal. I'm debt free except for my house and I'll stay that way by never buying a new car until I'm a cash millionaire.

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Old 06-23-2009, 04:57 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Even at gas at a insane $10 a gallon it would take 2 years to make up the added $10,000 of a hybrid. At the highs of last year.. at 4 a gallon.. were talking 100,000 miles worth of gas.. 5 years at 20k miles a year... at todays prices of 2.60 a gallon were talking 7-8 years.. to pay for that extra 10k to get a hybrid... Hybrids are nice but unless your driving 30-40k a year.. they still don't add up..
yay! someone else that can do the math... I forget who I always quote "A Hybred is an economy car for people who can't do math"

Until the "bill" includes: $4500, and a government subsidized car loan... I'll stick with my beat up 30+mpg rabbit
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Old 06-23-2009, 05:42 PM   #13 (permalink)
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As I said in a different thread, it depends on whether you prioritize FE or total cost. If you prioritize total cost, a new car should *never* be on the radar, no matter how many carrots the government or car dealerships offer. There are many used and reliable cars that can deliver 40+ with normal driving for well under $10,000. The hybrid tax is fool's gold, of course, but it's amazing how many understand that non-hybrids are far better values than hybrids, yet completely miss the boat on how used vehicles are far better values than new ones.
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Old 06-23-2009, 06:00 PM   #14 (permalink)
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As an example, my Taurus cost $2000, and I can reliably squeeze 30+mpg highway out of it (EPA highway rating is 26). The cheapest new cars you mentioned start around $14,000 off the lot, which leaves someone with a $2000 car with $12,000 extra to play with. At $2.60/gal gas, I get to drive 138,000+ miles before my purchase and fuel costs even catch up to (never mind exceed) what it cost you just to drive that Fit/Yaris/Rio away from the dealer. This doesn't even begin to take in the astronomical costs of insuring a brand new car compared to a 5-or 10-year old one, or the fuel you need to start paying for once the car is yours.

Factoring in insurance, maintenance, and fuel, the crossover point (where a new car achieves a lower cost than a low-priced used car) may not be reached for more than 300,000 miles--by which point, most drivers will be looking for a different vehicle anyway. If the mpg difference is slight, or if the purchase cost discrepancy is extreme (hello hybrid tax!), it's highly probable the crossover point will never be reached. There are very few fiscally prudent reasons to buy a new car, and the government cashback offer isn't an exception to the rule. I'd strongly advise you to focus on sub-$5,000 used cars and spend some time looking around. You don't have to choose between price, fuel economy, and reliability; it's very possible to have all three.

Last edited by joey; 06-23-2009 at 06:08 PM..
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Old 06-23-2009, 06:23 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I agree... If I'm planning to buy a "new" car, I definately want the most fuel efficient for the dollar as well as a $4500 incentive is nice too...

Quote:
Originally Posted by joey View Post
Factoring in insurance, maintenance, and fuel, the crossover point (where a new car achieves a lower cost than a low-priced used car) may not be reached for more than 300,000 miles--by which point, most drivers will be looking for a different vehicle anyway.
Considering I average only like 4,200 miles a year in my daily driver (lets round up to 5k miles)... it would take me 60 years to break even :laugh:
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Old 06-23-2009, 09:17 PM   #16 (permalink)
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1. You sux LOL, I wanted to trade my truck, but it's too old...man, i wanted that 4500 bad!!!!

2. The TDi holds it value very well.

3. Most people hate them or love them, but the Chevy HHR are pretty nice little vans. They go as low as 16000 new. And they get good gas mileage to be so roomy.

4. the KIA soul is a nice little car.

I would suggest driving the HHR, the Honda and the Kia soul.

Don't drive a VW, you will end up buying it once you feel all that mad torque...LOL
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Old 06-23-2009, 09:17 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebacherville View Post
One note on hybrids.. the battery packs on these are something I have hope for and fear..

The HOpe , in a few years youll be able to get larger capacity packs made with newer technologies that provide more power etc.. making your mpg get better..

The fear, these packs aren't cheap.. the cost of a MAJOR mechanical problem.. like a engine failure.. if in 5 years it fails. ill have one hell of a repair cost.. even though the gas engine has many more miles of life in it.. IM in MN and know what the weather can do to batteries up here.. we go from 100 degrees with 95%+ humidity to -50 and bone dry up here..

The batteries in these hybrids, they have a life span.. they will not outlast the engine.. but could be down the road a easy way to increase there mpg or even add plug in hybrid capabilities.
Consider then, the manufacturers warranty. At least with Toyota's Prius warranty, it goes farther than the drivetrain warranty, oddly enough:

Hybrid-related components for hybrid vehicles are covered for 8 years/100,000 miles. The HV battery may have longer coverage under emissions warranty. Refer to applicable Owner's Warranty Information booklet for details.

So you'd be covered for 8 years roughly either by mileage or time. In 8 years who knows, you may be able to find plug-in conversions for super-dirt-cheap, and not have to use fossil fuels directly at all.

Also, never say never... We don't know how long GOOD NiMH batteries last yet, as people are still running the factory packs in the few RAV4 EV's running around. Although hybrid packs are smaller and thus subject to much heavier cycling, they could still last as long as 10 years, which for your driving style is still 120-150K miles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ebacherville View Post
Every ones situation is different but for us its all country roads, all low speed (55mph) and not a ton of miles.. we usually do 12-15k a year, and I used 20k a year as a heavily used car for us, my new colorado pickup is 4 years old and has 21k on it.. (and totally paid for) but we don't commute daily in it all the time, the CRX gets the nod most f the time unless I need to haul some big stuff..

I just don't see the hybrid making sense for us unless gas goes to some really outrageous numbers.. if thats the case.. I'll drive at 40 instead of 55.. get some better mpg's, thats should not be a issue as every one else will be not diving as they cant afford to put gas in there 23 mpg average american cars.
Even at those low speeds/short distances a hybrid can still make sense. Driven properly it may not be a matter of 15-20mpg, but more like 30-40.

Don't let me try to talk you into something that'll make your checkbook retch, though.
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Old 06-23-2009, 10:06 PM   #18 (permalink)
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OK, I'll shoot my mouth off a bit.

Remember - with a new car, you end up at the dealership for anything more complicated than changing oil or a bulb. When it does something weird, it's too new, and so smaller shops don't know what to do with it, so you end up a the dealership. Plus, of course you don't want to mess up your warranty. You also need to maintain the nice shiny new appearance of the car so you're now responsible for taking care of all that cosmetic stuff. Been there, done that.

With an 8-10-12 year old car instead, your local independent shops will know how to fix it. Those are the cars those mechanics own and drive.

There are many decent fuel-economical cars you can get for $2000-5000. My 45-mpg Civic HX cost me under $3000, plus about $1000 to straighten up what it needed when I bought it (4 tires, wheel bearing, t'stat, some other things). There are plenty other decent cars in that price range, just go with your preference.

2nd rant, on hybrids and gas prices etc.
Gas prices are only going to go up. Sooner or later.

Hybrid batteries don't worry me. Taxi drivers in NY City and San Francisco are driving Priuses and other hybrids hundreds of thousands of miles per car. Don't you think we'd hear about it if their batteries were failing? Those cabbies push those cars hard and they keep going. It's just a case of fear of something new. Now, a 20-25 mpg car - that's something to be afraid of! Be afraid you won't be able to pay for gas to get to work one day!

Sorry for the rants. It's late, I'm tired.

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Old 06-23-2009, 10:10 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I do not know about you, but I keep cars for 10 - 15 years. A hybrid minus the $4,500 would be worth it for me.
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Old 06-23-2009, 11:41 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Well were seriously considering the Honda Fit, Rated evry very highly and hondas historically last forever and holde reslae better than most others.. this is my wife's car not mine i have the areo-crx, it turns in 54mpg in the summer..

MY wife is replacing the minivan thats rusting on the unibody, sure we could go get a used car, however i want that $4500 of my tax dollars back if i can get it.

AS for the Hybrid, we could easly afford the payments on even a fully loaded prius, but we don't want to if it doesn't make sense.. Most average drivers are getting 40+ mpg with the base model fit with out trying , my wife can hyper-mile ut not like i can.. she was making my colorado truck get a respectable well above EPA 28mpg, with the scangauge, I could get a round trip of 34.5 mpg..

SO the van we have will need to be replaced.. and in the next year, we have the opportunity to drive a new fit of the lot for about 10k.. THe fits are really nice, very well appointed cars even in the base model trim. and they easily blow away the EPA estimates even in the hands of non hyper-milers.

I checked and Honda does the 8 year battery warrantee also, the added cost of the hybrid would be about $5500 The Insite would be what we would look at for a hybrid.. and we are going to look at them..

The $4500 cash for clunkers program has many rules to qualify, first the traded in vehicle has to be 18mpg or less epa average, has to be newer than 1984 model year.. we meet those qualifications, next the car needs to be registered and in your name for 1 year and insured for that year... my dad missed the qualifications by 2 months on his jeep.. he was going to get a new hybrid.. to get the full $4500 we need to get a car that has a epa average thats 10mpg more than the traded vehicle.. so that puts it at 28mpg for us.. most sub compacts easily qualify.

The one thing we really need in the new car is versitility of a mini van.. sure a sub compact wont do exactly that, but the fit seems to be pretty utilitarian. I can only hope the Insight shares those trates since its based ont he same platform.

Initially wer were thinking go for the lowest cost to use this program but now were thinking, go for the best investment we can get..

We have time to decide this as we wont do this till Aug 1st, but were getting our ducks in a row and nailing down exactly what we want now so we can pounce on it when the time comes.

Were going to look at the honda dealer this weekend and some others.. hopefully do some decent longer test drives.. Ill be sure to report back those findings.. wonder if they would mind jacking in the scan gauge for the test drive

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