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View Poll Results: When will you pruchase a hybrid vehicle
Already have 1 or more 17 16.50%
In 1-2 year 7 6.80%
In 3-5 years 26 25.24%
In 6-10 years 18 17.48%
Never 35 33.98%
Voters: 103. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-04-2008, 08:47 AM   #21
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I'd prefer an all-electric car.... and some solar panels

If a hybrid, then I'd prefer a diesel pluggable.... and a bio-diesel distiller and some solar panels.

I'm hoping I have some good options in 2-3 years.
How about one of these?

SUNN Solar Electric Kit Car Vehicle
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:33 AM   #22
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I'm guessing that in five years (2013) there will be a number of viable electric cars available for purchase. Many of these will have an on-board gas or diesel generator for recharging the electrical storage system, so those will technically be hybrids.

One or two breakthroughs, and hybrids will be obsolete. Let's say that someone develops a battery or other energy storage system that can be recharged in five minutes. Even if your range is only 60 miles, then, combined with home charging, you'll probably stop less often at a fueling station than you do today.
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Old 05-04-2008, 10:02 AM   #23
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Currently available hybrids, like sports cars, are hobbyist toys and/or fashion statements.
Manufacturers build and market expensive, sporty, high performance cars and equip them with all manner of penis enhancement packages. This is not because these cars are practical, but because manufacturers want to profit from the demand for fashion accessories that give their owners the illusion of youth, virility, and power – and the notion that chicks dig them and guys think they’re cool. But they are also fun to drive; so enjoy – just don’t get too wrapped up in the notion that the sports car is terribly significant.

Manufacturers also build and market expensive, technologically advanced hybrid cars. This not because these cars are practical, but because manufacturers want to profit from the demand for fashion accessories that give their owners the illusion of green eco-conscious enviro-responsibility – to do so they sweep some of the emissions under the rug (or rather up the smokestack of a far away coal-fired power station), and it doesn’t register with many people that the higher price tag likely indicates more precious (or just more) resources required to produce transportation (unless the cars remain useful for a lot longer than other cars – and there is no evidence that they do). But they are probably also, in a way different from sports cars, fun to drive and the technology in them is interesting; so enjoy – just don’t get too wrapped up in the notion that the hybrid car is terribly significant.

When a technology becomes competitive with the internal combustion engine, it seems to me that there should be no need to complicate a vehicle employing that technology by adding an internal combustion engine to it. I could be wrong; maybe one day hybrids will become practical for my needs or maybe bizarre government regulations will make it advantageous for me to buy one.

A hybrid technology that does strike me as promising is the diesel/electric drive that been introduced in some modern yachts http://www.matternetwork.com/2006/12/diesel-electric-hybrid-yachts-set.cfm - the system uses the wind (indirectly – wind moves boat – motion through water spins generator propellers) for a lot recharging and a diesel generator to augment that – of course it’s only a savings if you mostly sail rather than motor – and it’s still more expensive up front than standard diesel engines and may (I don’ know) be more difficult to fix if some component other than the generator breaks down in some far off place.
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Old 05-04-2008, 10:12 AM   #24
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hobbyist toys and/or fashion statements.
I'd just like to add that these are not necessarily bad things - the demand for them can and does fuel technological breakthroughs.
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Old 05-04-2008, 10:32 AM   #25
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I bought one because I got a good deal on it (employee discount plus $3500 rebate when gas was "just" $2 a gallon and the $2600 federal tax credit).

Part of my thinking was that I wanted to encourage the technology and part of it was just enjoying a techno-toy.

Long term durability is a question, but I'm encouraged by the good durability of the taxi cab fleets in NY and SF.

So far, I haven't regretted the decision.
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Old 05-04-2008, 10:40 AM   #26
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Next vehicle is coming in 3 to 5 years. Ill look closely at them then. I will need something suv/crossover like. Hopefully they start spitting them out.
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Old 05-04-2008, 10:46 AM   #27
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realistic truth is

FuturePundit: Most Hybrid Cars Do Not Pay Back Higher Costs In 5 Years
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Old 05-04-2008, 11:30 AM   #28
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I'll consider it when plug-in hybrids are widely available and after their early adopters have paid the 'early adopter tax' (high initial prices) and did the QA work to make Version 2.0 of them more reliable for the rest of us. My best guess is 3-5 years, probably closer to the 5 years since we have two fairly new cars ('05 and '06) which both get 30+ MPG already.
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Old 05-04-2008, 11:31 AM   #29
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Next month or two-- buy it used from a desperate seller and drive it into the ground.

The battery & hazmat disposal fears are hyped total, absolute truth and you should never, ever buy one. Tell the sellers to contact me for assistance.
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Old 05-04-2008, 11:38 AM   #30
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We considered the Prius when we were swopping vehicles last year. We decided against it on economic reasons - the additional costs involved would not be worth it based on our annual mileage. So until we get closer on the breakeven point on fuel costs vs purchase costs, we will continue to drive a regular car.
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Old 05-04-2008, 11:53 AM   #31
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We will continue to drive our 8 year old, but meticulously maintained car until this all settles down, or until my wife can no longer stand to be so far behind the times! It probably has at least another 5 years in it.
(But dear, now it's beginning to look like a classic!)
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Old 05-04-2008, 12:11 PM   #32
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I bought a Honda Civic hybrid in December and really enjoy it. It has so far demonstrated the same quality and reliability that we have come to expect from Honda (we have had only Honda's since 1986) and I am pleased as punch when I gas up. I traded in a 1993 Accord that averaged about 26 mpg. With the hybrid, I have recently been averaging 52 mpg on my 100 mile roundtrip daily commute.

The Honda technology is fundamentally different from the Prius. The primary motive force for the Prius is the electric motor, with a boost from the gasoline engine when necessary. By contrast, the Honda uses an ultra efficient gasoline engine as the prime motive force and uses an electric motor for boost when accelerating. As a consequence, the Honda battery is much smaller. It is located in the vertical part of the back seat and therefore is protected in the event of a collision (the downside is that the back seat doesn't fold down).

Both employ regenerative braking and the Honda also charges the battery when you are going downhill (not sure about the Prius). The Honda turns off the gasoline engine at stops and quickly and automatically restarts it when you lift your foot off the brake pedal. Neither one plugs in.

One of the reasons we went with the hybrid is that we got a $2100 federal tax credit and we did not pay the 6% state sales tax. Those two benefits alone accounted for the majority of the price difference between the hybrid and the standard versions of the Civic. And, of course, I am saving about $2000 per year on gas.

However, even if the cost of the hybrid were higher, I would still be happy with our choice. It will take the efforts of all of us to support a transition to a better technology so that we can reduce oil demand and air pollution. I am happy to do my part.
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Old 05-04-2008, 12:25 PM   #33
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I've got a Prius hybrid. We went with that because of the lower total cost of ownership, which is considerably more than just gas savings.

For example, we live in a hilly area, on a hilltop. Multiple runs up and down the hills on a daily basis tend to be rough on brake life in cars with an automatic transmission. On a previous car, we were replacing brake pads every 16-18 months, and brake rotors every three years. The Prius, and similar 'strong' hybrids like the Honda Insight and Civic, use a thing called regenerative braking, which uses the engine system to brake (like a manual transmission driver could) AND recaptures the energy that would otherwise appear as heat in the brake pads and rotors. The brakes on the Prius tend to last much longer than those of conventional vehicles in our situation.

We are likely to not see any brake work for at least 5 years with this vehicle. There are other items like this, and at the end of that 5 year period, resale value is considerably better than for many other vehicles.

IntelliChoice.com Survey: Hybrids Continue to Reward Over the Long Term
ConsumerReports.org - What that car really costs to own
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Old 05-04-2008, 12:25 PM   #34
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I voted never, because I've never had a car of any type and hope never to need one.
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Old 05-04-2008, 12:52 PM   #35
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The Honda turns off the gasoline engine at stops and quickly and automatically restarts it when you lift your foot off the brake pedal.
Anyone know why this can't be done with a regular car?
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Old 05-04-2008, 01:01 PM   #36
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I voted 3-5 years. I'm with the early majority on this. I want to do my bit for the planet, but I have a perfectly good 13 year old Honda which should get me where I want to go at a reasonable cost for several more years. I also want to see some of the bugs worked out and costs come down. Recently, subsidies have made it more attractive to purchase hybrids. Taxi companies in my area are buying scores of Toyota Priuses. All the taxi drivers tell me they love them and are saving a bundle on gas.
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Old 05-04-2008, 02:31 PM   #37
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The Prius was first sold in the US in 2000 as 2001 model. When we bought our hybrid last year, we asked the local dealer how many hybrid batteries they had replaced so far. The answer was none, which was encouraging. We realize they will have to be replaced eventually, but the cost has dropped every year which along with skyrocketing gas prices makes the hybrid look smarter every day...
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Old 05-04-2008, 03:07 PM   #38
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Have always owned smallish cars, bought a hybrid last year and the mileage is stunning. Like most if not all hybrid owners, we understood the payback would be long (although getting shorter every day). But there are other reasons to own a hybrid, significantly lower emissions is but one. Everyone understands that hybrids are not ideal and an interim approach until all-electric, fuel cells or some other technology comes along. You can either do something to reduce consumpton and emissions (10% of the oldest cars on the road are putting out 50% of the emissions) in the meantime, or wait on electric, fuel cells or whatever you think is the answer. But those technologies have a long way to go, and the day they are the 'economic' best choice are likely decades away.
I am not concerned with the emissions 'savings'.... my newest car is an ULEV which puts out VERY little emissions... so saving a small percent on that is not going to save the planet... but getting rid of my 95 Chevy might... but truth be told, it is only putting out like 5% of what I am allowed during inspection... so I could let it go to crap and STILL not have problems passing the emission test...
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Old 05-04-2008, 05:07 PM   #39
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I checked "6-10 years" but it may be never. I'll buy one when the cost of purchase/ownership over a span of 15-20 years makes sense for me. Right now they're not even close.

And I want it in a full-size pickup truck. At least a couple of times a week I use the truck's capabilities as a truck, not a car.
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Old 05-04-2008, 05:10 PM   #40
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Anyone know why this can't be done with a regular car?
It can be done and in some places it is.

2008 MIni Cooper Clubman

2008 MINI Cooper Clubman - Overview for MINI Cooper Clubman - CarGurus

...European models come with regenerative braking and automatic idling shut-off, to decrease emissions, and a diesel engine option...
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