not California friendly. I do like the Prius. Just saw a brand new one on the road the other day. I've seen several Insights already. You can't just say that only environmentalist would drive those cars. There are those who want to be different and daring.
Some people will buy them just for the technology itself. The Prius, without a doubt, is the most technologically advanced automobile on the road today. Nothing else is even close. From a technological standpoint, the Prius offers the most bang for the buck of any car.
Looking at the Gas milage reported by Edmunds doesn't the Prius get 45 MPG on the highway? Doesn't it use a Battery electric and gas powered engine and cost almost 20 grand? And looking in the same site doesn't the Chevrolet Metro get 41 or 42 on the highway? And cost about 10 grand? Just in case I missed it doesn't the Volkswagen Golf turbo diesel get 49 MPG on the highway? Isn't the Volkswagen about $17,400.00 ? So how advanced can this hybrid be? I believe I once read that Battery production produces more pollution than it saves so is that being green? And when you have to dispose of a Battery isn't it toxic waste in most States? I wonder if giving up 4 mpg to the Volkswagen is an advancement? Or spending $10,000.00 to get an extra 3 or 4 mpg over the metro is an advancement? Everyone in this room realizes that hybrids are a compromise. We also know that they are a stop gap measure till the real alternative fuel or alternative power cars are made. The EV-1 didn't use any gas. But think of disposing of all those batteries? A car that goes 100 miles on a charge would be nice, unless you had to go 150 miles and it took 3 hours to charge. For right now I would say, nice try but no prize. The Volkswagen and the Metro may not be the kind of car I am looking for, but at least I would only have one kind of engine to maintain. For a hybrid to become popular it would have to cost less, or last longer, or preform better or something or people wont buy them. I have read that Toyota and Honda lose money on every hybrid they make. How many do you suppose they are willing to see for less than they cost to make? If that is the case. Remember most commuters spend most of their time on the highway, not in the city. So fuel milage should reflect the target markets driving habits.
Your response is not atypical of a skeptic of hybrid cars, but they're not entirely based on the truth.
1.) I have the full schematics of the Prius right in front of me, and if you had them, you would not be questioning that this is the most technologically advanced vehicle in the world.
2.) Yes, Volkswagen diesels get excellent fuel mileage and I'm not against diesels except for the fact that they don't meet California emissions standards. Diesels actually meet ULEV for CO and HC but are off the charts for NOx and particulate matter, the latter of which is carcinogenic. Yes, Geo Metros get good gas mileage but nobody buys them and the 3 cylinder performance isn't anywhere close to a Prius. Also it only gets 30 city 34 highway since they discontinued the 3-cylinder.
3.) I wasn't equating technological advancement with fuel economy, you were the one who are trying to compare apples to oranges. That's like asking does a 6-disc CD changer make you go faster from zero to 60. For the record, the Geo Metro at best was a LEV and the Prius is a SULEV and there's a HUGE difference, there.
4.) Battery disposal is a problem but the batteries in the Prius are warranted for 8 years and 100,000 miles. I even believe they are partially recyclable.
5.) The Prius is a compact and the Metro is a subcompact, so it's not fair to compare their prices. To be fair, the Prius needs to be compared with the Corolla and Civic, in which case the incremental cost is around three to four thousand dollars. There is also talk about tax breaks and incentives for hybrids which would narrow that gap further.
6.) Yes the Prius gets better gas mileage in the city than the highway. True, most people spend their commutes on the freeway....stuck in traffic on freeways that are not at free flow conditions.
7.) Hybrids are not a compromise for anything except in heavy-duty applications (even though they're used in transit buses). Take the Ford Escape, for example. The 2003 hybrid escape will have the performance of the V6 with the fuel mileage of the 4-cylinder. Same goes with the Dodge Durango. Other than price, where's the compromise.
8.) Toyota does not lose money on every hybrid it sells (I don't know about Honda). Toyota Motor Sales, USA has indicated that from a manufacturing perspective they break even and they are committed to the technology. It's too difficult to measure R&D costs because they will be reaping the benefits of this vehicle for decades to come.
9.) You are welcome to voice your opinion on the market for hybrids, but quite frankly it's too early to tell how they will do in the market so all you can really do is speculate based on your information which, to this point has not been very good.
You're more than welcome to be skeptical about it, just know a little more about the technology before you do so.
abbanat: I do not want to take sides in the argument of which technology is more advanced. But does not boaz47 make a good point that alternative fuel (such as hydrogen) cars would be the preferred technology if people are to continue using personal transportation?
Absolutely, from an environmental standpoint, hydrogen is the best option. But it is not an option now and may never be, so it's not wise to count our chickens before they've hatched. There are some incredibly talented people around the world working on hydrogen storage as we speak and trying to make it a reality. But that does not support his argument. Alternative fuels are definitely part of the answer, which is what I'm advocating not what he was advocating. But there are a couple of problems:
1.) Infrastructure for alternative fuels is limited (CNG for example, though there are over 100 public stations in California)
2.) There is no hydrogen infrastructure at all.
But I understand your point. Hydrogen is about 15-20 years away from a fuel for personal transportation.
Understood and agreed abannat. Thank you for your insight. From your profile I would say you have a very interesting future ahead of you. Transportation must make great strides from what it is now to accomodate the way humans are actually living.
on alternative fuels, as do most carmakers nowadays. There are a number of options available, but getting them to market is a major investment -- and therefore risk. The hybrid technology used in the Prius and Insight is currently the best compromise between technology and marketability, and will hopefully get enough people to accept alternatives to the gasoline engine that other avenues can be explored.
#227 of 257 Hi Folks- For more discussion on the Honda Insight,