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10-16-2005 06:01 PM #1
Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance
The Hybrid myth is nothing more than bunk and scam today!
Your article on SUVs and Hybrids fails to mention that the current cost of purchasing a Hybrid SUV are cost ineffective. The idea of hybrids is terrific but the automobile manufactures are overpricing them to the general consumer market. Tax credits of up to $3,000 are available for cars delivered after Jan. 1, 2006 -- but only to the first 60,000 vehicles each automaker sells. In fact the IRS will be reducing the deduction on Hybrid cars
“The original purchaser of a qualifying hybrid gas-electric car may deduct $2,000 for the year the vehicle is first used, if that year is before 2006. In 2006, the deduction is scheduled to drop to $500.” Quoted from the IRS Webpage.
This tax deduction will be phased out by 2007. It has been estimated that it would take an individual 21.5 years in gas savings to pay back the extra money that you have to pay on purchasing a Hybrid vehicle. Gas mileages that are quoted by automobile manufacturers are incorrect and subject to much debate. Another issue that is not reported by the press is battery life and battery failure issues. If you plan to keep the vehicle for longer than 5 years or trade it in (buyers beware), you may have to replace the batteries at an exorbitant cost! Yes, there is a charge/ recharge limit on batteries that has to be factored in.
The auto industry has to set goals on reducing the cost of hybrid technology to bring it in line with current costs that the average consumer can afford. The $3,000 to $4,000 premium added to the cost of a car is a big bite out of any ones check book when considering purchasing a hybrid. The incentives in form of tax breaks have to be improved by the federal government for the consumer purchasing a hybrid vehicle. Automobile manufactures have to reduce cost of hybrid and add more incentive for the general consumer market before this technology will be accepted.
General advice to those who plan on purchasing hybrids is don’t rush out and buy one before all the facts are weighed in!