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  1. #21

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    As I see it, if you are willing to drive a compact vehicle with marginal performance, you can find that now without the premium price of a Hybrid.
    If you require room and more performance, going from a vehicle that gets 18 mpg to one that gets 36 mpg, and still meets your needs (like the FEH). makes sense.
    I expect payback within 5 years, and relatively low depreciation if I decide to sell it before that time.
    If you are going from a vehicle that can achieve 40 mpg to one that may achieve 50 mpg - the payback may never come - especially if you pay over MSRP.

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  3. #22

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    Keeping track of oil and oil prices has been a hobby of mine for a while. I have always been environmentally conscious and have always bought cars (since 1986) based at least partly on fuel economy.

    Remember: it is cheaper to save energy, (i.e., through efficiency) than to buy it! That's why I ordered a Prius last August (and was told it will arrive in a few weeks).

    Regarding the comment earlier about cheap oil....there are some good articles in Scientific American (1996, 1998?) and in National Geographic (2004?) regarding when world oil production will peak. Many experts predict between 2004 and 2010!!! What that means is: all the "easy" oil will have been pumped out of the ground, and it will get progressively more expensive to get the rest out of the ground. I believe only Iraq, Iran, Kazakhstan and United Arab Emirates have oil wells that have yet to peak in production. (Makes you think twice about why we started the Iraq war.)

    The method used to estimate this peak in production was the same one that a Shell geologist used in 1956 to predict that peak US production of oil would happen in 1969. It actually happend in 1970, and has been declining ever since. So, order your highest mileage cars now and tell your friends, things will get very expensive within our lifetimes. Especially when you consider that China, India and Africa all want their share of upward mobility just like we did.

    And, if we invade Iran, like some reports are now showing coming out of the Pentagon (see recent articles by Seymour Hirsch, the guy to "outed" the Abu Garaib scandel), we will also have, in addition to high oil prices, even more terrorism to worry about due to our recent stupid foreign policy.

    Saving energy is always cheaper.....

  4. #23

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    sometimes you can spot in the background of movies a gas price sign. it's interesting to see that just 5 years ago we were paying near $1 a gallon and today it's $2 a gallon. i wish i knew where there was a running factual record of our gas prices. the drop in the US dollar value is a component of the increase we've been seeing, along with the increase in demand from contries like china & india who are *growing up* in a sense ~ adding cars to suplement carrying material on horse-ox-elephant.

    wait till they discover air conditioning!

    expect gas prices to rise faster then your paycheck!

    see ya

  5. #24

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    $1.45 in Atlanta last week. $1.60+ now.

  6. #25

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    It sounds to me like they are worth it now...

    Gas prices spiraling out of control; how many old peat bogs and decomposed dinosaur flora beds can really be left to tap for oil usage? It sounds like denial to me and I do not mean a river in Africa.

    With all the writing on the wall, how does a Dodge Magnum make any sort of sense? It sounds like time misspent. Focus on alternative energy sources is necessary now. That way, they are no longer ALTERNATIVE. The sooner that is addressed, the more viable (economically and performance-wise) these automobiles will become. One must walk before they can run and the sooner one learns, the better we are for it.

    By the way, I remember theold Datsuns and VWs. They could not get out of their own way for certain! But now they are quick, econmoical and fun to drive. I recall my dad's old VW bug and my mom's VW station wagon. POKEY! I own a '96 Jetta with 140k, and it is a quick responsive, fun to drive machine. It's funny waht 25 years worth of focus becomes...

  7. #26

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    Worth it? Now? No. Cool? Hell yeah. I'm still waiting for a hybrid compact car under $15 000.

    Toyota Echo Hatchback Hybrid anyone?

    I hate the current trend. I will NEVER buy a SUV or a truck, hybrid or not.

  8. #27

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    And I will never put my family in an econobox that is not as safe nor as comfortable as my Escape. If you are willing to compromise that much, why not ride your bike?

  9. #28

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    "And I will never put my family in an econobox that is not as safe nor as comfortable as my Escape. If you are willing to compromise that much, why not ride your bike?"

    Safe? What are you talking about? Echos are pretty safe :

    Have you ever been into an Echo? Their very comfortable. And, they only cost a fraction of your big Ford Escape.

    Drive my bike? Sure, I do it all the time when it's an option. Don't you?

    My opinion is that most people don't need a big expensive truck or suv. Maybe you don't, maybe you do and that's fine. They want cars that are bigger and more powerfull. For what? The speed limit is the same for everyone. I don't get it. I sure don't need all those horsepowers and very few do...

  10. #29

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    The final thing after gas prices that made me get on the list to buy an escape hybrid, was this pass Summer Hurricane Season. It brought to light the days of gas shortages and long lines. Four hurricanes, no elec. (no pumping), high prices, 6 hour waits to get 10 gal of fuel for your car and generator! Try this for a month and you will be glad you had a fuel misser. Natual disasters, war, teriorrist bombs and other accidents are reasons to be prepared. You just may need to pack up some important things like your family, cooler, food, clothes, maybe a dog or cat etc. and leave for awhile. Now, do you want to do it in an Escape or Honda? What about driving through flooded roads? The smaller cars don't fare so good!

    Do you know how hard it was just to get a generator then? Wake up people, there are so many reasons to buy this SUV Hybrid now it isn't funny. I jumped at the chance to get one. Pay now or pay more later!

  11. #30

    When Hybrids will be worth it.

    Hybrids are worth it now. It's just that no cost is associated with the removal of vehicular CO2 emmissions from the atmosphere.

    If these costs were included the sums would be vastly in favour of hybrids.

    Eventually the "penny will drop". For example, In Australia a week or so ago, we had 38 deg C in Perth, Western Australia while it was snowing in Victoria. Unheard of in recorded heistory in an Australian summer.

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