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Old 12-09-2017, 04:50 PM   #11 (permalink)
It's all about Diesel
 
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Maybe, in case the Prius V turns out to be unavailable at all, it seems like the Rav4 might not be a bad choice.

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Old 12-09-2017, 05:37 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Any fleet vehicle is judged on fitness for use and average annual cost per year over the vehicle life. Interior space and cargo capacity are given specs. Fuel and repair costs are critical including down time for service and insurance rates. Compare prices of routine maintenance items such as tires and filters. In Vermont things like ground clearance and traction in mud and snow are considerations. Does the heater and defroster heat up quickly? Is there adequate leg and head room? Is that vehicle make or model prone to rust? When I sold auto parts I would check Consumer Reports annual used car charts so I could anticipate what models would need which parts.
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Old 12-15-2017, 01:52 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Grant-53 View Post
Any fleet vehicle is judged on fitness for use and average annual cost per year over the vehicle life. Interior space and cargo capacity are given specs. Fuel and repair costs are critical including down time for service and insurance rates. Compare prices of routine maintenance items such as tires and filters. In Vermont things like ground clearance and traction in mud and snow are considerations. Does the heater and defroster heat up quickly? Is there adequate leg and head room? Is that vehicle make or model prone to rust? When I sold auto parts I would check Consumer Reports annual used car charts so I could anticipate what models would need which parts.
Frankly, we're not going much off road in these vehicles. The highways are clear except for a few hours on the worst of days, such that any sedan or hatch is going to be able to navigate it. AWD is a bonus but it isn't going to sway purchase decision.

Headroom and cargo space are major considerations. My boss ruled out just about every sedan, because we have some very tall employees and some of them simply can't sit in the back of a Prius (non-V) comfortably for long periods. The Bolt doesn't carry quite enough in the back. The Prius V he described as "feeling dated and underpowered" compared to the competition.

The top choices right now are the Rav4 and Kia Niro, with a leaning toward the Niro. Kia's warranty largely makes up for the reliability considerations on the transmission, though he tasked me with checking out the reputation of the service department at the Kia dealer. The Chrysler Pacific is a runner-up, but he's thinking he doesn't want a vehicle that large. I'm going to have him sit in a Clarity just for giggles, but it's probably not going to make the list.

It's a shame the plug-in Niro probably won't be available before the federal tax rebate runs out. (?)
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Old 12-15-2017, 02:07 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I love the Pacifica plug in hybrid. You think you don't want a vehicle that large but if I was a client and somebody put me in the back seat of any of the other listings, that would be the last time.
pacifica
nitro
side by side that would be 10 times more dramatic. After living with a minivan since 1988 I never could have anything else.

Last edited by Hersbird; 12-15-2017 at 02:12 PM..
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Old 12-15-2017, 03:32 PM   #15 (permalink)
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We don't transport clients. Several technicians will often travel to client sites, with some bins of equipment.
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Old 12-15-2017, 09:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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That's where a van of some sort shines. I'd look at the Pacifica, but not the hybrid. The seats drop into the floor so you can have one, two or three rows of seating as needed, changing your available cargo volume from decent through huge to ridiculous.

The hybrid's batteries are in the space where the second row seats would fold into. That's giving up more cabin versatility than I'd be willing to lose.
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Transmission type Efficiency
Manual neutral engine off.100% @MPG <----- Fun Fact.
Manual 1:1 gear ratio .......98%
CVT belt ............................88%
Automatic .........................86%

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Old 12-16-2017, 01:38 AM   #17 (permalink)
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We don't transport clients. Several technicians will often travel to client sites, with some bins of equipment.
Well then, let them ride in the trunk! JK, Fat Charlie makes a good point. Just the other day I took 2 mins, folded the rear and middle seats into the floor of our T&C and picked up my mom's new leather sofa up on a rainy day. I personally with a garage don't need that middle row to fold, our last van it was almost faster to clip the middle seats out and set them beside the van in the garage, I think the old captains chairs were more comfortable than the stow and go thin seats as well. Plus we would really benefit day to day never even using the gas engine with the plug in. Just a few trips a year would need gas range. Either version the rear seats quickly fold into the floor and that's the common ones we fold up and probably have folded up most of the time.
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Old 12-18-2017, 08:53 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fat Charlie View Post
That's where a van of some sort shines. I'd look at the Pacifica, but not the hybrid. The seats drop into the floor so you can have one, two or three rows of seating as needed, changing your available cargo volume from decent through huge to ridiculous.

The hybrid's batteries are in the space where the second row seats would fold into. That's giving up more cabin versatility than I'd be willing to lose.
Since the rear seats would be actually in use, the space taken by the battery packs wouldn't be wasted at all. And with the rearmost seats flat-folded, there's still plenty of cargo space.

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