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Old 11-07-2008, 02:17 AM   #21
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I am looking at moving way out to a suburbs so I would be putting pretty good mileage on the car. I also like to take cross country road trips, it would be great then too.
The Prius runs on a gasolene engine once over 35mph,expect 35-40mpg on the highway or 60+mpg in the city when its running on batteries.
If i was doing mostly highway miles i'd look for a less mechanically complex car than the Prius,A Toyota Corolla will get 40+ mpg if driven with a light foot.
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Old 11-07-2008, 04:19 AM   #22
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I have a 2006 Prius and get 46-47 mpg overall in mixed driving, which was about the same as CR's "real world" mileage figure. Consumers' Union had lots of good things to say about the Prius that year. I don't know if they've reviewed it again since then. Their evaluation was that a Prius was one of two hybrids that would actually save you money over the first five years—unfortunately I don't recall what the other one was, and the tax credit on a Prius is much lower than it was two years ago, if there's any left at all. CR reviewed the Yaris this year and didn't think highly of it. I don't know what your budget is for the purchase, but it sounded to me as if for about the same money ($12-15K), a used first-generation Prius might be a smarter pick than a new Yaris.
First gen prius is getting pretty old now. If you go that route, make sure the batteries have been changed recently. If I understand correctly, that's a several thousand dollar issue, and the car simply won't work properly once the batteries are too far gone.

R
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Old 11-07-2008, 09:09 AM   #23
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I have only bought two new cars in all the years and cars I have owned (if I didn't miss any my last one was number 40). Both new cars were bought in December, one was a left over that I had been watching on the lot, it was just what I wanted but no one else did. They had turned down 2 previous offers I had made. I walked in after lunch on the last day they were open for the year and made them my low ball offer again. They actually called the owner at home and he said sell it, he didn't want it carried into the next years inventory.

Not as luck on the other, a 2006 Honda Civic bought in December 2005, for those with short memories that was another gas spike time. The first dealer did all the work then tried to really screw me on the trade in, a Ford Explorer. It was so far below the book trade in price I told him I could pay the difference in gas millage for two years on what he was cheating me out of. He didn't believe me till I did the math for him (car salesman are not good at higher math). We drove less than 25 miles down the road to the next Honda dealer, told him we already knew exactly what we wanted, all he had to do was give a reasonable price on the trade in. He came with in a couple of hundred of what I had set for my low trade in value, we negotiated a couple of over price dealer add on extras (we were going to pay for them anyway) for free and the deal was made. I did tell him we were ready to drive to the 3rd Honda dealer in the area if we needed to.

The Civic hybrid got me looking at the Honda but when I did the math for what we wanted (middle model at that time) and the hybrid the payback wasn't there and we were looking just for cost of operation not some more nobel reason. I believe the numbers at the time were at $7/gal gas we would break even at about the estimated time the batteries needed to be replaced (I picked 100K miles not sure where I got the number). So he break even point was sometime during the second 100K miles and that was with gas at more than twice what it was selling for then.

We do love our 2006 Civic, and it has averaged 34mpg for all kinds of driving for the first 40K+ miles. High is low 40s on long trips and lows are low 30s in the Winter for mixed driving. Our driving is mostly rural so we would never get the big numbers with a hybrid anyway. The average at 34 was interesting because that is just a little more than double the average millage we had gotten on the Explorer in 3 years of ownership.

You also have to remember that the first doubling of your millage saves you the most money. Unless you start walking you can save that much again.

Jeb
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Old 11-07-2008, 09:15 AM   #24
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First gen prius is getting pretty old now. If you go that route, make sure the batteries have been changed recently. If I understand correctly, that's a several thousand dollar issue, and the car simply won't work properly once the batteries are too far gone.

R
I just looked it up, and the Prius was first sold in the US in 2001. It's been longer than I thought.
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Old 11-07-2008, 09:29 AM   #25
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First gen prius is getting pretty old now. If you go that route, make sure the batteries have been changed recently. If I understand correctly, that's a several thousand dollar issue, and the car simply won't work properly once the batteries are too far gone.

R
I think the battery issue is somewhat over stated. These batteries are not used like a laptop where they are exposed to full charge and discharge cycles.

Quote:
San Francisco's first hybrid taxi was a Toyota Prius that went into operation in 2003. The first fleet of hybrid taxis anywhere in America hit the streets of San Francisco in November 2004, with fifteen Ford Escape hybrids operated by Yellow and Luxor cabs. The city also has Camry hybrids in its hybrid fleets. In Vancouver, British Columbia, a city teeming with Prius taxis, Andrew Grant started using a Prius as a taxi in 2001—and rolled up more than 300,000 miles without battery problems.
Taxis Show Hybrid Battery Durability | Hybrid Cars
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Old 11-09-2008, 08:50 AM   #26
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There are Prius taxis in Vancouver, CA, that have over 180,000 miles with no battery problem. You can prob buy a used prius from someone now that gas prices have dropped, and lots of folks have money problems.
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Old 11-09-2008, 09:26 AM   #27
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Andy. You might consider holding off if you can or have not purchased yet. I suspect that next year there will be a larger tax incentive to make that type of purchase.

Plus with gas prices back down... you will not see any benefit till prices rise again (and they probably will rise again).


Of course, if you need a replacement... you might be forced to do something.


We recently bought a vehicle and decided on a compact that gets about 25/33 mpg. DW drives it around town. We have another compact car that gets about the same that is about 6.5 years old. I will probably replace it in 4 or 5 years with a Hybrid. Short of some other technology breakthrough... hybrids are probably the best solution for fuel economy.
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Old 11-09-2008, 09:27 AM   #28
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You will love the smart key option if you get that.
No need to fish the keys out of your pocket to unlock the car or to start it Gas mileage aside, I would have bought the car just for that.
Mileage all depends upon your driving habits. I have heard of people getting as low as 38mpg and as high as 70mpg.
The immediate feedback of your fuel efficiency is a great help. I wish all cars had something like it.
If you get a plug in conversion you can get as high as 125mpg on trips under 15-20 miles.
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Old 11-09-2008, 12:03 PM   #29
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I think the battery issue is somewhat over stated. These batteries are not used like a laptop where they are exposed to full charge and discharge cycles.
Sshhhh! Once people stop worrying about the batteries they'll drive up the price!!

For those concerned about a Prius' mechanical complexity, I'd take its drivetrain over an automatic transmission any day. And the brake system is an engineer's dream design.
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Old 11-09-2008, 11:21 PM   #30
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S
For those concerned about a Prius' mechanical complexity, I'd take its drivetrain over an automatic transmission any day. And the brake system is an engineer's dream design.
I've never heard a cogent explanation (but I bet you could give one ...)
of why these cars don't just run the wheels completely with electric
motors which are powered in turn by a fossil-fuel engine driving a
generator, much like a diesel-electric locomotive. And some batteries
to allow plug-in use. Seems a lot simpler.
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Old 11-10-2008, 05:43 AM   #31
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Honda Civic 4 door LX 17,600 brand new, 40+ mpg highway 37 city all the time. Comfortable and pretty safe for a small car. Get one.
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Old 11-10-2008, 08:25 AM   #32
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I've never heard a cogent explanation (but I bet you could give one ...)
of why these cars don't just run the wheels completely with electric
motors which are powered in turn by a fossil-fuel engine driving a
generator, much like a diesel-electric locomotive. And some batteries
to allow plug-in use. Seems a lot simpler.
That is what the Chevy Volt will be doing. It's called a "series hybrid" design, the Prius is a "parallel hybrid". For marketing purposes, to distinguish itself from the present hybrids, Chevy is calling it an "Extended Range Electric Vehicle" - which it is.

The reason present cars don't do it that way is that it takes a very large battery pack to fully power the vehicle. That is a big, expensive battery pack. Presently, the battery pack in a Prius only assists the ICE. Of course, the electric motor must be larger also, but that isn't a limiting factor, the batteries are. The Volt may be priced out of reach for most people because of that big battery pack, we will see.

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Old 11-10-2008, 09:17 AM   #33
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Some of you might find the Series Hybrid type propulsion concept interesting in the way they are using it for marine applications. Here is a link to a manufacturer that is doing this:
The Catamaran Company - Hybrid Catamarans
Quote:
All Lagoon 420s coming out of the Lagoon Factory will be standardized on the new propulsions system, which typically require only one simple bearing change per 20,000 hours.

Complete installation comprises of two electric motors connected to propellers by straight shaft transmissions, one generator and two set of 6 batteries. When batteries are 100 % charged, the boat will be able to function with both motors for approximately two hours (depending on speed).
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Old 11-10-2008, 09:32 AM   #34
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There's a fuel cell called the FCX Clarity made by Honda that's being tested in the LA area. It looks promising, runs on hydrogen.......
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Old 11-10-2008, 09:46 AM   #35
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It looks promising, runs on hydrogen.......
That's an oxymoron.

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Old 11-10-2008, 09:51 AM   #36
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That's an oxymoron.

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Here's a few more:

jumbo shrimp
customer service
near miss with a nuclear weapon
almost pregnant
Presidential leadership
Congressional oversight

I could go ON and ON.........
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Old 11-10-2008, 11:24 AM   #37
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Andy, fuel economy and price aside, I think the Prius looks really FUN to drive.

I probably wouldn't buy it for practical reasons (since I don't drive much, and since I think a Corolla is a better value), but if I had one I think I would love driving it.

I also like the design. So sue me, everyone - - but it's so ungodly cute!! I would get a red one.
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Old 11-10-2008, 11:30 AM   #38
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I agree it would not be 100% for the price or the overall cost of ownership/mile but I also like the looks, the size and happen to trust consumer reports and many of the other publications that continue to rank the car #1 for owner satisfaction, that says a lot to me. I happen to like either silver, gold or white for the color. We'll see if there are any deals when I get back home. I am also considering a new tow vehicle for my Airstream so hopefully the darn incentives on the bigger SUVs won't sidetrack my attention. I have been hot for a Prius for years...
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Old 11-10-2008, 11:55 AM   #39
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I agree it would not be 100% for the price or the overall cost of ownership/mile but I also like the looks, the size and happen to trust consumer reports and many of the other publications that continue to rank the car #1 for owner satisfaction, that says a lot to me. I happen to like either silver, gold or white for the color. We'll see if there are any deals when I get back home. I am also considering a new tow vehicle for my Airstream so hopefully the darn incentives on the bigger SUVs won't sidetrack my attention. I have been hot for a Prius for years...
We have a 2007 Prius and love it. We get 44 to 45m per gallon and we have the air on most of the time we always use the filtered air for allergys and smog heat or what ever..we live in Nevada and drove it to San Diego we did a total of 1200 miles filled up the gas three times($3.50 per gallon or about that) on our trip were there for 9 days and the total cost was $95.00..we drove over to Conronado Island every day to dog beach. The cars size is about the same as a Camary it isn't a real small car the back seats go down pretty flush lots of room for our two Austrailian Sheperds that came with us plus luggage...

Our dealer calls us at least once a month to try and buy it back because there having trouble getting them in and keeping them in stock..and said it is worth more than we paid for it right now...it is fun to drive and very quiet has good pickup if and when it is needed..we can find no complaints about it ..the cost was $25700 it was one step below the top of the line it has bluetooth but not the GPS...

Kathyet (Happy Prius Owner)
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Old 11-10-2008, 12:12 PM   #40
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happen to trust consumer reports and many of the other publications that continue to rank the car #1 for owner satisfaction, that says a lot to me.
I'd take that with a grain of salt.

Many Prius buyers bought it as a symbol of "green-ness" or to make a statement, or whatever. That's fine, but I'd bet their assessment of the car is not as objective as many owners of more conventional cars. Are they in love with the car because it is so great, or do they think it is so great because they fell in love with the car?

On the audio forums, the guys who bought the $10,000 speaker cables really do think they are far superior sounding to the $5,000 speaker cables. And they are correct (they really do *think* they are superior sounding).

Hey, it may be a great car regardless, I'd just throw some added skepticism on owner reports because of that.

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