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  1. #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!

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  3. #2

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    General advise is don't rush out and make false assumptions based on one factor. There are numerous factors that make buying a hybrid worthwhile for many people.

    Want proof? Look at how well they are selling. All those people must think it's worthwhile. And before you say we've just been suckered by the manufacturers' propaganda and have made poor investments, I can say with some authority that hybrid buyers are, for the most part, the most informed car buyers in the marketplace.

  4. #3

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    Randy, easy on that Hummer salesman. Things are getting real bad for them now.

  5. #4

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    Well with any relatively new technology and I say that because a lot of people ask me still if I need to get special gas or plug it in etc... There's a premium for early buyers of tech as more people buy them it WILL bring down the cost. It's been that way since as long as I can remember. I think nearly ever buyer realizes there a premium for hybrids. So what's your point that someone who cannot afford $20K-$30K hybrid don't buy one?
    Batteries are covered for a minimum 8 years or 80K. So if the media is not covering battery failure where are you getting your info on this?
    There also a bonus about a hybrid that usually goes unmentioned but I like the fact I go to the gas station 3 times less than my previous car an SUV. With gas so high I hate to wait 20-40 minutes for the cheapest gas in town to save 10 cents a gallon. I've be saving over an hour of time of my life filling up gas. How much is your time worth? Mine is definitely worth more than $2.40 an hour for gas. 12 gallons saving 10 cents per 30 minute wait time.

  6. #5

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    I paid about $18,500 for my new '04 HCH.
    A similarly loaded Civic EX went for about $1k less.

    In under 2 years time I've reclaimed more than the premium, among other benefits.

    I plan to drive the car over 300,000 miles and probably will never replace the battery.

    If you are looking for a vehicle that gives the most dollar for mile value then you are correct, the hybrid is not the way to go.

    There are new cars to be bought in the $10K range that advertise mid 30's MPG which would deliver a much better $/mile value.

    But you get one of those stripped down econo boxes that is all you have- A stripped down cheap econo box that gets mediocre mileage.

  7. #6

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    I have been reading your responses...some people hae more money then sense. Joe Average Consumer is where you need to target your sales. Not at the yuppie crowd who jump on any new band wagon driving down the road. SHOW me the proof.

  8. #7

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    The price differential between the most expensive non-Hybrid Civic (EX), and the Hybrid Civic, is a whopping $6000 CDN up here in Canada.

    There is approximately 1 liter/100 km difference in highway fuel consumption between the two. That's roughly $1 for every 100 km. Drive it an average of 25,000 km per year, and the savings are $250 annually. That's a 24 year payback in the Land of Rust. Not even legendary Honda reliability is up to that!

    I guess if you have enough disposable cash to make an environmental statement, hybrids are great, but they make poor economic sense to the average buyer. At least up here in the Frozen North. YMMV in the US where there are at least SOME tax incentives (there are NONE up here).

    Mike G

  9. #8

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    If you are considering that you can also save yourself time because hybrids get to use the HOV lanes. If you save 10 minutes a day in a commute, thats almost another hour of quality time you have for yourself.

    I also believe that we are sending a message to the automakers. MAKE CARS MORE ENERGY EFFICIENT. And I believe that they are listening. More manufactures are producing hybrid vehicles. 2 years ago, there were only 2 manufactures producing hybrid vehicles. Now how many have them or will have them soon??? And look at the varity of them. You can pick a car, a truck or SUV and soon a mini-van. Even Mercedes is getting into this "small" market.

    So is this a fad? I don't believe so. I think this is just the begining of something bigger. I even hear there is a website devoted to hybrid vehicles.

  10. #9

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    Hello Mike:
    "The price differential between the most expensive non-Hybrid Civic (EX), and the Hybrid Civic, is a whopping $6000 CDN up here in Canada."

    I wonder why things are that bad up there in Canada?

    If you go to http://automobiles.honda.com/ you'll see the price for a HCH MT is $21.850.

    The base EX is $18,260, $3,590 difference.

    But the HCH is not a base car, its fully loaded.
    Option up the EX with the accessories available for it that come STD on an HCH and the total is $21,789, the price is almost identical.

    Even then there are many features not available on an EX that is STD on an HCH so you end up with a lesser car with less MPG.

    People have been comparing a fully loaded vehicle to base models for years and complain there is a price difference.

  11. #10

    Hybrid Hype and Consumer Acceptance

    Got to love when people like "Show Me" and "Consumer Beware" (I think you the same person?) make bold and completely bogus statements and then disapper when presented with the "FACTS" !!

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