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Old 06-25-2008, 01:14 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by ttoyoda View Post
Fine until the battery runs down. Then the little turtle icon lights up, right?
No, that doesn't happen in practice, although I suppose you could discharge the battery enough or be in acceleration mode long enough to cause the computer to cut off the electric motor and leave you with ICE alone. I've never heard of that happening, though.

The battery management on the Prius is pretty well done. When the battery gets down to about 50% charge, the ICE will run to recharge it. You also do regenerative braking and regen engine braking whenever you are slowing down, take your foot off the pedal, etc. In normal driving, you generate quite a bit of electricity to charge the battery pack, and its rare for me to get the ICE coming on solely to charge the batteries.

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Old 06-25-2008, 01:17 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Err... Where can you find a Southern California freeway on which you can actually do 55 mph? (Other than maybe around 3 AM.) From what I recall, reality is more like 10-20 mph average in stop & go - for which the Prius should be well suited :-)
I drive the 101 from Ventura to Santa Barbara every day, and there are long stretches that have fast travel. Going the other direction it is definitely dependent on the time, although we joke that we average 55 by going 20 for several miles, see an opening and get up to 85 when we slam on our brakes to go 20 again.
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Old 06-25-2008, 01:23 AM   #23 (permalink)
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They're assuming a 100K life on a Prius? Why? Or is that just for the batteries? Good news, they're easy to replace.

That's why I love driving older used cars. They're already obsolete, so no worries there. And as it turns out, they hypermile just fine.
The battery warranty is 150,000 miles in California. AutoBlogGreen says Toyota's out-of-warranty battery claims are 0.003% (that would include the other states where the battery has a 100,000 mile warranty). Replacement costs are down to about $3000, from the original $5000 (it never was $10,000). Link.

One advantage of older cars is that are saving a ton of money, and being as green as you can be because you aren't junking a car and creating a new one (an energy intensive process for sure). And usually the parts are less expensive when they do need repair. I usually keep my cars for 8 to 10 years.
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Old 06-25-2008, 09:08 AM   #24 (permalink)
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One advantage of older cars is that are saving a ton of money, and being as green as you can be because you aren't junking a car and creating a new one (an energy intensive process for sure). And usually the parts are less expensive when they do need repair. I usually keep my cars for 8 to 10 years.
So in 8 to 10 years what do you do? Buy another 8-10 year old car? You can by a high FE car now( or one that's a year old) and in 8-10 year can say the same thing and you saved a ton of cash on fuel if driven in an eco fashion and they are so much cleaner(emissions) then 10 year old cars.
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Old 06-25-2008, 10:37 AM   #25 (permalink)
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So in 8 to 10 years what do you do? Buy another 8-10 year old car? You can by a high FE car now( or one that's a year old) and in 8-10 year can say the same thing and you saved a ton of cash on fuel if driven in an eco fashion and they are so much cleaner(emissions) then 10 year old cars.
I usually buy a new car after I wear one out. Its solely by personal preference, because your method is obviously "smarter" from a financial sense (you don't take a 30% depreciation hit on a car that's a year old, but you do when you drive a brand new one off the lot). The poster I was responding to was saying that buying and modding old cars was an economical and green way to go, and he's right.

2010 starts the new plug in hybrids and, probably, more cars like the Aptera. That would be about the right time to replace my other truck (although it would be relegated to the side yard to pull the boat when needed, and the Prius would become my wife's commuter.)
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Old 06-25-2008, 01:29 PM   #26 (permalink)
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I drive "Older" cars
They are usually "Gifts" from customers who no longer want to keep them up or make major repairs. Sometimes you can find them on the road. Be ready with your cell and a wrecker on call.
I fix them, thereby keeping them from a jukyard / landfill and resell them. I don't make lots of money on the vehicle, I break even and sometimes a little more. Occasionally I get a great deal and these are the ones that keep my wife happy so I can have my "toys". It's my way of helping people who need transportation and reducing the carbon footprint of new vehicles.
By attaining a car for $0 and spending $1,000 you can do a lot of repairs.
Typically I sell a vehicle that has 150,000 miles on the clock. After I am through with my re-furbishing I am certain it will last another 100,000 miles.
Just another way to help.
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Old 06-25-2008, 04:49 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Personally I think that the car to own is one that does not have a car payment whether it's new or 20 years old. Just get the cleanest most efficient one you can afford. You would be suprised what you can do with an extra 200-500 a month.
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Old 06-25-2008, 05:33 PM   #28 (permalink)
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I think it's very important to consider the energy needed to make a new car. If the energy used to make a new car is even 1/4 of it's price it would take a very long time to make up that energy in fuel even if the new car is twice as fuel efficient. Someone who drives a Pickup into the ground every 20 years may be more green than someone who buys a new "prius" every 5 years.... Or maybe not. Just something to consider.
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Old 06-25-2008, 10:47 PM   #29 (permalink)
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"I think it's very important to consider the energy needed to make a new car."

You could even take it a step further, and consider where the energy's likely to be coming from. Though in a global economy you can't easily pin it down 100%, if you buy a made-in-Japan Japanese car, or a French car, much less of the energy input is likely to come from fossil fuels than for one built in the US or (shudder) China.
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Old 06-26-2008, 10:37 PM   #30 (permalink)
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1: An H3 is more expensive than a Prius
2: An H3 is much less efficient than a Prius
3: You can't just say poof and have an H3 appear, they have to be built .
4: An H3 is a hell of a lot closer to being obsolete than a prius.
5: That twit needs to get her foot off the floorboard..500 miles to a tank pfft.

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