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Hybrid Redux? Not for Most Owners
Design News ^ | 04-18-2012 | Charles Murray, Senior Technical Editor, Electronics & Test

Posted on 09/25/2012 7:23:07 AM PDT by Red Badger

A new study by R.L. Polk & Co. shows that the overall percentage of hybrids sold into the new vehicle market has fallen from 2.9 percent to 2.4 percent over the past three years. Moreover, approximately two-thirds of hybrid owners who returned to the market in 2011 did not buy another hybrid.

"Intuitively, you would expect the numbers to be higher, given how many hybrid vehicles are available in the market place today," Brad Smith, director of Polk's loyalty management practice, told us.

Polk's study revealed that only 35 percent of hybrid owners chose to purchase a hybrid again when returning to the market in 2011. The repurchase rate was even lower -- under 25 percent -- when owners of the Toyota Prius were excluded from the statistics.

Industry experts familiar with the study don't believe that the low percentage of return buyers is a reflection of dissatisfaction with hybrids. Most hybrids, such as the Toyota Prius and Honda Insight, have performed well in reliability studies and have offered fuel efficiencies as advertised.

But hybrids now face competition from conventional gasoline-burning and diesel-burning vehicles that are boosting their fuel efficiencies. As a result, prospective buyers whose main concern is vehicle operating costs may be less inclined to choose a hybrid.

"People who buy hybrids because they are eco-friendly are more likely to stick with it and buy another hybrid," said Lacey Plache, chief economist for Edmunds.com. "But hybrids are facing really strong competition in terms of attracting consumers who are just looking at the bottom line."


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Technical
KEYWORDS: automakers; automobile; battery; car; honda; hybrid; prius; toyota

Toyota Prius' customer loyalty had a significant effect in Polk's study. When repurchase behavior of Prius customers was not factored in, overall hybrid loyalty dropped to less than 25 percent. (Source: Toyota)

1 posted on 09/25/2012 7:23:15 AM PDT by Red Badger
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To: Red Badger

“People who buy hybrids because they are eco-friendly are more likely to stick with it and buy another hybrid,”

And a standard car that gets the same mileage as a Prius is less ‘eco-friendly’ because...?


2 posted on 09/25/2012 7:28:44 AM PDT by lacrew (Mr. Soetoro, we regret to inform you that your race card is over the credit limit.)
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To: Red Badger

I would like them to factor in people who have a hybrid as a primary vehicle and not just a hobby or me-too showpiece.


3 posted on 09/25/2012 7:28:45 AM PDT by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: Red Badger

47/47/47mpg for the 2013 Fusion Hybrid.

http://wot.motortrend.com/official-2013-ford-fusion-hybrid-returns-474747-mpg-262711.html


4 posted on 09/25/2012 7:29:20 AM PDT by ltc8k6
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To: lacrew

It’s not the official Obama-authorized auto. Come on, get on board for the big win.


5 posted on 09/25/2012 7:30:07 AM PDT by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: lacrew

-——because...?——

It is morally inferior

Rational thought is not relevant in the decision

Self worth is the deciding factor for repurchase


6 posted on 09/25/2012 7:32:30 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... Present failure and impending death yield irrational action))
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To: Red Badger

Well, the Pious screams, Hybrid so their owners can feel superior. Other hybrids that are just modified regular cars, don’t sell nearly as well for that one single reason.


7 posted on 09/25/2012 7:39:29 AM PDT by Lx (Do you like it, do you like it. Scott? I call it Mr. and Mrs. Tennerman chili.)
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To: Red Badger

This reminds me of polls where Republicans are not polled.

We don’t own a Pious and will never own one.

Having said that, we know many Pious owners on their second or third Pious.

Toyota/Lexus makes very reliable vehicles and a large % of people buy another one if they want/need a new car.

So removing the #1 hybrid from this survey, makes the survey totally worthless.


8 posted on 09/25/2012 7:46:48 AM PDT by Grampa Dave (We are the 53%, who pay taxes and keep this country going inspite of the 47% rat moochers!)
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To: Lx
Well, the Pious screams, Hybrid so their owners can feel superior.

No kidding! I cannot count the number of times I have driven past a Pious and the owners nose is a perfect 45 degrees up in the air to the point they cannot see how slow they are going to try and get more mileage out of that ugly metrosexual looking car....lol

My wife and I decided to buy a new car and we settled on the Camry so we test drove the hybrid version then we test drove the regular gas version. It was a no-brainer as the gas version just "felt better" to us. Ended up with a beautiful "Cosmic Mica Gray" Camry with leather interior and the SE edition which has great handling and looks sharp. Also will get 40mpg on the highway and 28 around town. Not too bad.
9 posted on 09/25/2012 7:47:50 AM PDT by copaliscrossing (Progressives are Socialists)
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To: ltc8k6

That car looks a bit like an Aston Martin. Very nice!


10 posted on 09/25/2012 7:48:44 AM PDT by catbertz
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie

I for one had to give up on a hybrid vehicle. In 2007, I purchased a Ford Escape Hybrid, trading in a perfectly good 1999 Chevy Siverado for it. The Silverado had the advantage of being able to transport my spouse’s power wheelchair, but the interior of the Escape lacked the room or access to load it easily in the interior. So I used a carrier on the back, mounted on the Category I hitch I had also included in the purchase. Sometime later, I chose to purchase a small trailer, to carry both the power chair, and an electric scooter, only to discover, there is no legal way to connect the trailer lights to the Escape Hybrid’s electrical system. I ended up trading the Hybrid for a nearly identical Escape with a V6. Fine, I could tow the trailer now.

But the trailer proved awkward for a number of reasons, and besides, spouse had difficulty climbing up into the Escape. So we traded again, this time for a Toyota Sienna minivan, whinch has LOADS of interior room, allowing both the power wheelchair and the electric scooter to be loaded, without use of a trailer OR a carrier on the back.

Upshot, probably will drive the Toyota until the wheels fall off, or it becomes part of the estate, whichever comes first. For sure, NEVER going back to an electric or hybrid vehicle again. They simply cannot handle the chores of a primary family vehicle.


11 posted on 09/25/2012 7:51:12 AM PDT by alloysteel ("You have attributed conditions to villainy that simply result from stupidity".)
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To: lacrew

Don’t forget to account for the Pius pollution: That big SuperFund cleanup in Canada for its batteries. The Pius pollutes more than a Hummer in its lifetime because of that.


12 posted on 09/25/2012 7:53:45 AM PDT by CodeToad (Be Prepared...They Are.)
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To: Red Badger

Awwww......

Prius is the iPhone brand ...... it keeps suckers all feeling fuzzy warm inside.


13 posted on 09/25/2012 7:56:12 AM PDT by Sir Napsalot (Pravda + Useful Idiots = CCCP; JournOList + Useful Idiots = DopeyChangey!)
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To: Red Badger
South Park creators add their commentary to the Hybrid/Smug alert debate. Pretty humorous. Skip if (their) language usage would bother you.
14 posted on 09/25/2012 8:06:21 AM PDT by jwsea55
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To: Red Badger

They have taken over the taxi industry in San Fran and in Europe.

An SF driver just told me he runs them three years to about 350,000 miles and sells them to other entities who run them two more. Average MPG: 30. Not bad considering the alternatives.


15 posted on 09/25/2012 8:21:07 AM PDT by cicero2k
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To: lacrew
“People who buy hybrids because they are eco-friendly are more likely to stick with it and buy another hybrid,”

And a standard car that gets the same mileage as a Prius is less ‘eco-friendly’ because...?

Because of the creation and disposal of the battery pack
the Prius is less “eco-friendly” than the average car. This
is the opinion of the head of the physics department at our
local college. A very smart and level headed scientist who
is not swayed by political correctness.

16 posted on 09/25/2012 8:22:18 AM PDT by CrazyIvan (Obama's birth certificate was found stapled to Soros's receipt.)
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To: Red Badger

Hybrid tech might make sense for garbage and mail trucks and other service vehicles that make frequent stops but the tech does little for the good driver in typical conditions who can anticipate stops and slowdowns.


17 posted on 09/25/2012 8:31:00 AM PDT by posterchild
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To: Red Badger

Got a Prius as a rental one time because it was the holidays and that’s all they had on the lot.

I drove through some moderate flurries on the highway that any normal FWD sedan would laugh at. Maybe a half inch of accumulation. Every time a big rig flew past me, I would slide several feet.

On the bright side, I felt very lucky to be alive after that trip...


18 posted on 09/25/2012 8:32:15 AM PDT by varyouga
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To: Red Badger

We know a retired couple who bought a Prius several years ago. After they had it for a couple years, I asked them how it was working out. He went on and on telling me how it was the best investment he had ever made and how much money it saved them in gas. Then he told me how it had just passed “it’s 5000 mile check up with flying colors”. This was back when gasoline was less than $2 a gallon.

I didn’t argue with him, but I was able to do some rough math in my head. He told me they were getting around 50mpg dividing by the 5000 miles they drove it in 2 years came to 100 gallons of gas or 50 gallons per year. At $2 per gallon they were spending only $100 per year for gasoline.

My wife’s 1999 Buick Regal GS has a V-6 with a supercharger and every available option gets 18mpg and 27mpg according to the EPA and for our mix of driving averages approximately 23mpg. So if they had been using my wife’s car they would have spent a little more than $200 per year for gasoline which for them calculated out to savings of a little more than $100 per year. Giving them the benefit of the doubt... I figured they were saving $10 a month over my wife’s car in fuel.

Their Prius supposedly had a retail value of around $25,000 which they couldn’t afford because they are on a fixed income provided by Uncle Sam and have less than perfect credit. But they got a “sweet deal” on a lease for only $400 a month.

My wife’s car originally retailed for more than the Prius because you pay a premium for a 240hp supercharged engine, all leather and every available option, however we bought it used with cash when it was a couple years old for just over $11,000. Even now with 214,000 miles it still runs and looks like new after 10 years and no major repairs.

Our friends had to give their Prius back after their lease ran out. Thier lease payments came to just $400 x 36 = $14,400 + several hundred dollars in fees, but remember they saved over $360 in gas as compaired to my wife’s car in that same time period. Wow! What a deal! And think of the memories that they still have.


19 posted on 09/25/2012 8:55:38 AM PDT by fireman15 (Check your facts before making ignorant statements.)
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To: fireman15

I forgot to mention that we had already been using my wife’s Buick Regal for over three years before they even bought their Prius... which was longer than their lease period. Our Buick still looked like a new luxury car while their Prius looked like what you see holding up traffic everyday driving 55 in the fast lane. He did admit to me that it didn’t do very well if they wanted to go over 60mph.


20 posted on 09/25/2012 9:05:48 AM PDT by fireman15 (Check your facts before making ignorant statements.)
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To: posterchild

Waste Management Inc. our local garbage company is converting their garbage truck fleet to natural gas............


21 posted on 09/25/2012 9:06:46 AM PDT by Red Badger (Anyone who thinks wisdom comes with age is either too young or too stupid to know the difference....)
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To: varyouga

I would have thought that big battery would make a great weight...................


22 posted on 09/25/2012 9:08:14 AM PDT by Red Badger (Anyone who thinks wisdom comes with age is either too young or too stupid to know the difference....)
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To: Red Badger
Waste Management Inc. our local garbage company is converting their garbage truck fleet to natural gas............

That actually may make sense... the conversion is relatively inexpensive and the when compared to gasoline the energy equivalent makes natural gas approximately $1.50 per gallon.

23 posted on 09/25/2012 9:15:14 AM PDT by fireman15 (Check your facts before making ignorant statements.)
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To: fireman15

I think they are using diesel........


24 posted on 09/25/2012 9:30:12 AM PDT by Red Badger (Anyone who thinks wisdom comes with age is either too young or too stupid to know the difference....)
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To: Red Badger

Well they aren’t converting the diesels. They must be buying new trucks. They are probably doing that because of the new diesel regulations. The new filters on the exhaust side must have the particulate burned out of them using a “regen” cycle. This isn’t a big problem for trucks operated mostly on the highway, but for fire engines, garbage trucks and other diesel trucks used mostly around town... it is a huge hassle and waste of fuel. They must leave the truck running for hours at high rpms with a fuel and regen fluid mixture being injected directly into the filter assembly to burn out the particulate. It is one of the stupidest things that the EPA has come out with recently and is causing lots of firms to turn from diesel for local use.


25 posted on 09/25/2012 9:53:02 AM PDT by fireman15 (Check your facts before making ignorant statements.)
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To: Red Badger
I have a 2008 Mercury Mariner Hybrid. It has almost 80,000 miles on it. It has been a very reliable vehicle. The mileage ranges from 21 MPG in a cold winter to 28 MPG in fair weather and about 26 MPG overall. The best ever was nearly 32 MPG when I traveled with no heating/cooling, cruise control on, no traffic and an average ambient temperature around 75 degrees. That happened ONCE in 5 years of ownership. The hybrid can only pull 1,000 lbs vs 5,000 lbs for the V-6 Escape it replaced. It is pretty gutless. Acceleration is slow. Little engine heat, so your teeth chatter for a long time in subzero weather waiting for "seat heat" and numb heater to deal with the frigid temps. The 4WD has been perfect in our snowy Pocatello environment. Air conditioning is fine for trips across the CA desert.
26 posted on 09/25/2012 10:34:24 AM PDT by Myrddin
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To: Red Badger

Natural gas is an excellent choice for a fleet vehicle (and could be for others with an infrastructure buildout). Natural gas vehicles can also use hybrid tech.


27 posted on 09/25/2012 12:27:18 PM PDT by posterchild
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To: alloysteel
Sometime later, I chose to purchase a small trailer, to carry both the power chair, and an electric scooter, only to discover, there is no legal way to connect the trailer lights to the Escape Hybrid’s electrical system.

I had successful connections twice to the Mercury Mariner Hybrid for the trailer wiring. First pass was done by the U-Haul dealer. That failed and I replaced it with another module from a trailer supply company. That worked for a few months until it failed when a wire driving the trailer lamps got pinched to ground and burned up the driver module. That also burned down my battery. It is possible to properly run trailer lights with the correct driver modules, but it takes some real care to not screw it up.

My Mariner Hybrid has backup sensors, so the correct wiring interface module is at this link

28 posted on 09/25/2012 12:31:51 PM PDT by Myrddin
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To: ImJustAnotherOkie

Just curious, why would ANYBODY buy a dog slow hybrid as a “hobby” car?


29 posted on 09/25/2012 12:33:31 PM PDT by nascarnation (Defeat Baraq 2012. Deport Baraq 2013)
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To: nascarnation

Why do liberals behave the way they do? They are space aliens. The Hybrid gives them the electric juice to contact their home planet Dumas.


30 posted on 09/25/2012 1:30:44 PM PDT by ImJustAnotherOkie (zerogottago)
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To: Red Badger
The battery is heavy but the rest of the car is very light and proportionally too large for the tiny eco-weasel wheels.

Based on the snow tracks, it also seemed to be more narrow than every other car on the road.

31 posted on 09/25/2012 9:26:04 PM PDT by varyouga
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