Should I buy a hybrid?

Discussion in 'Wheels, Wings, Mud, and Water' started by toxcrusadr, Oct 16, 2017.

  1. savatage1973

    savatage1973 Super Member

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    Taxi fleets typically do nothing but short trips in urban areas, and sit with the A/C or heat running while waiting for a fare. This is where a hybrid will shine. Gasoline vehicles use a substantial amount of fuel in stop and go driving, and while just sitting idling (not to mention wear and tear on the engine). A hybrid uses nothing but electric to operate the A/C and heating systems while sitting "idle", and (as previously mentioned), the regenerative braking charging function is most effective in stop and go driving.

    So, yes, a hybrid is a good option over a big old V-8 Crown Vic sitting in front of the hotel or convention center.idling, and then going 6 blocks light to light in downtown traffic.
     
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  2. Shadowdog

    Shadowdog Super Member

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    Some IC vehicles have stop/start that keeps the AC or heater going when engines shuts down at lights etc.
     
  3. savatage1973

    savatage1973 Super Member

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    E85 is such a joke. It is nothing more than another farmer subsidy (I wasn't aware that the actual stations got a cut too). I had a truck that was "flex fuel", and E85 is so much cheaper around here, so I tried a couple tanks, since I use a lot of fuel. My fuel mileage dropped by 20-30% and a perfectly good new truck couldn't pull a sick whore off of a toilet--the power loss was THAT noticeable. In the end, it cost me more than real gas, and crippled my truck (it was literally like someone lopped two cylinders off of my V-8).

    The other "wonderful" side-effect of the expansion of ethanol use in fuels was that farmers were subsidized heavily to use corn for ethanol production--so the supply of corn for food products was compromised, and the cost of corn-based grocery items went up in price accordingly--so take your pick--do you want cheap half-assed fuel or cheap corn flakes for breakfast?
     
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  4. SoCal Sam

    SoCal Sam Lunatic Member

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    Should have mentioned the skewing by law in favor of Hybrids. Taxi companies are required to switch to Hybrid when retiring the faithful Crown Victoria. That's how it is in City of Los Angeles.
     
  5. SoCal Sam

    SoCal Sam Lunatic Member

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    My faithful Crown Victoria. Cheap to buy and very cheap to maintain. I wish I got 50 mpg in town but then I do not have top cover the higher acquisition and maintenance costs. However, for me the utility and safety of a big car are priceless.

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Wildcat

    Wildcat Spring ain't here... Subscriber

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    I figured as much. In Detroit, the mentality is to hang onto something until it absolutely will no longer run, and then replace it with something just as cheap and beaten.

    Of course, it would all be a moot point if we had mass transportation options in our area. All we have is a dirty, dilapidated bus system, and a (b)light rail downtown that goes nowhere except up and down a major street for a few miles. Lame.
     
  7. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I was about to ask what other diesels are out there besides VW which are sadly apparently not available new at this point. Thanks for the suggestion.

    A salesguy told me the other day that the Cruze is a very heavy car compared to others in its size class. Haven't had a chance to check it out yet. Never owned a Chevy but I'd look at the used car reliability ratings.
     
  8. Wildcat

    Wildcat Spring ain't here... Subscriber

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    My better half's best friend has owned a Cruze for a few years and it is constantly plagued with problems, ever since they drove it off the new car lot. The seats are also rock hard (I moved it out of the driveway once), and apparently it catches every bump in the road--very uncomfortable to ride in, I'm told. Last we heard, the AC was dead, and the throttle only worked part of the way. (They are older, so it's not like they abuse it at all.)
     
  9. Killer Fox

    Killer Fox AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I should add when we got our Prius we also qualified for some tax incentives that are now expired.

    I think the dirty little secret though is that most hybrids get most of their good gas mileage due to their aerodynamics and light weight. An aerodynamic small car can get almost as good mileage for less money. Especially newer ones that have tech that cuts the engine at red lights, etc. I'll bet if they put a small non hybrid 4 cyl engine in a Prius it would get almost the same MPG (maybe more).
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2017
  10. ben_

    ben_ Member

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    Location:
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    From some relatives of me experience, the Toyota hybrids battery life is pretty good (10 years at least) and the battery change is not that expensive here (~1500 € / less than 2k USD) on a Prius

    As others said, they will just get better mileage on mostly downtown city driving, highway its pretty much the same consumption as a conventionnal downsized engine in a small and light car, really cant compare that with big car or SUV, hybrids Lexus RX400H do not get excellent fuel economy neither (~20-23 MPG).

    If you said you have 35 miles commute I guess thats not all city driving, maybe some purely electric vehicle could do the trip back and forth. Teslas are good candidate but very expensive, other like Leaf are really too limitating I think you can not even occasionnaly use them for a longer ride once in a while but that depend on your usage (and if you have another car)
     
  11. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    My commute is essentially all highway - 30 out of 35 miles of it anyway. So I'm moving away from looking at hybrids.

    Wildcat - thanks for the user notes on the Cruze!
     
  12. Killer Fox

    Killer Fox AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    If you are going full electric the Chevy Volt is a nice car. There were some nice tax breaks that make them much cheaper but I think those have been phased out. Not sure why they did away with the tax benefits for hybrids and electrics. It's not like everybody is driving them now.
     
  13. dcmfan

    dcmfan AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    The tax credits will start to phase out when the manufacturer sells 200,000 units. The credit was still in place (at least for Chevy) when I did my 2016 taxes. IRS Form 8936 has the details:

    Credit Phaseout
    The credit for vehicles with at least four wheels is subject to a phaseout (reduction) once the vehicle manufacturer (or, for a foreign manufacturer, its U.S. distributor) sells 200,000 of these vehicles to a retailer for use in the United States after 2009.
     
  14. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I will look into that...although I was not planning on buying new, but you never know. The Volt is a candidate due to its range, but I'd have to install an outlet to charge it.
     
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  15. SaturationPt

    SaturationPt AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Fortunately or unfortunately, fuel is still fairly cheap in the US. If fuel were significantly more expensive it would be easier to justify the additional expense of hybrids and other alt-fuel vehicles, and hybrids would evolve to actually save fuel.

    This is what the subsidies were to achieve: an artificial economy that supports alternate-fuel & renewables (including biofuels such as biodiesel and methanol/blends) and creates incentives for more R&D in them. It doesn't seem to be a secret that wind farms are built by subsidies, not revenue.

    As long as fuel is $2.40/gal. we consumers will buy 6,000lb SUVs, Toyota will continue to produce FWD pigs like the 4runner that can't best 22mpg with a transverse 4cyl engine and no 4wd (basically a minivan with a high floor and a hood). Didn't they come into this country with better fuel mileage than that decades ago?

    I'm not a fan of government control (whether incentives or taxation) but I certainly can understand the need sometimes when more people buy "light trucks" than compact cars to commute daily, alone.

    Yes to the Volt. The electric car that can go further. I can't imagine facing an emergency situation where I have to go home and get my gasoline car so that I can make it to a hospital 100miles away to see my Father sick, or my grandchild born. The Volt answers that by starting its engine and generating its own power. Good solution.
     
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  16. dcmfan

    dcmfan AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    FWIW The supplied charger works on 110. No need for 240 unless you need to charge faster.
     
  17. Imanoldee

    Imanoldee AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I bought a new 2016 Prius in Jan 2016.
    I have been very happily surprised at getting 60+ miles to gallon.
    With a 55 mile round trip commute.
    Uphill both ways. :) Ok it is up and downhill both ways. :)
    And the commuter traffic reduces the speed to about 40 miles an hour.
    The Prius gets about 55 miles to gallon in fast highway driving though.

    Seems driving at a steady 40 MPH is the sweet spot for this car.
    Of course I drive like an old man, cause I am.
     
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  18. Alobar

    Alobar Pulling out of the Last Chance Texaco.. Subscriber

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    I do like the idea of an electric car with the ability to charge itself with a small efficient liquid cooled engine. It should not directly drive the car at all,but simply spin a generator in order to extend the range on a trip (at the drivers discretion ) or to run such things as heat or ac on days when such demands would bite into needed range. A computer driven range calculator on the dash would constantly estimate miles before a mandatory charge, both with engine and without,

    Of course all this is coming, with battery technology (and charging tech and stations) bringing up the rear. The batteries of the past is likely why hybrids until now have had much bigger engines than needed. Lead acid batteries are just not as good as they are heavy, bulky, and can only be discharged about a third before damage results. I don't know what batteries hybrids have been using till now, but it is critical that they develop new batteries that can meet the demand without weight or bulk, and of course be economical to make, hopefully without destroying the very environment the electric car promises to save.
     
  19. SaturationPt

    SaturationPt AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Depends on the hybrid, most are using Li-Ion or Li-Polymer. The bigger engine is because they drive the car directly and want decent acceleration numbers without a large battery bank.

    As far as on-board battery condition etc., the hybrids I've been renting typically have all of that, just don't allow the driver complete control (usually only sport or economy type settings).
     
  20. SaturationPt

    SaturationPt AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Location:
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    Aerodynamic drag is the largest parasite during driving, and increases logaritmically with an increase in speed. Double your speed is roughly 10x the drag.

    My big SUV usually averages around 35mpg around town (rural town, not city) because it runs from 30mph to 55mph, on a 55-60mph commute I average 38, but once on the 77mph superslab I typically drop to around 32 (depending on wind). You will always get better mileage at lower speeds and there will be a sweet-spot when you're in a higher gear at lower speeds. I can get into 7th gear around 52mph and I know it, ... that's worth an mpg or two to keep it there.

    I too drive like a gramps, I've earned it.
     
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