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#349 of 453 Re: [kirstie_h]
Nov 19, 2004 (6:53 am)
Kirstie, there will be another hybrid option pretty soon for a family with 3 teenagers. I read a report in today's local paper about the 2007 Altima hybrid, which is due out in the summer of 2006. The report said the hybrid is based on the 4-cylinder Altima, which already has good power, plus will have a 100 kw electric motor (vs. 50 kw in the Prius), so power should be very good, and Nissan's engineers are claiming 40 mpg for the car. Since it's based on the 4-cylinder model, which starts under $20k, the price should be reasonable (unless they fluff it up with mandatory options).
Nov 19, 2004 (7:29 am)
I'm the opposite of you, backy - I put about 19K miles on my minivan last year. With 3 kids, it's a lot cheaper for us to drive places on vacation than to buy plane tickets. Our family & friends are spread out, so we take long car trips often. It's not unusual for us to take 12+ hour trips.
Unfortunately, even an Altima won't be comfortable for those trips, so I'm still holding out for a minivan (or 3-row vehicle). However, I quite like the Altima, and would be interested in a hybrid version circa 2007/8.
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#351 of 453 Re: [kirstie_h]
Nov 19, 2004 (8:35 am)
The last 4 posts all make good sense. If you commute solo and can afford two vehicles the Insight is an excellent choice. If you always seem to have 1 or more passengers running errands the mid size sedan is ideal. If you take frequent trips with children a mini-van or medium size SUV is excellent. An Altima hybrid that gets 40 mpg would be a good alternative to the Prius. I think the Accord Hybrid is a big mistake.
I put very few miles on my 3 vehicles. I pick the one that fits the errand. If I was a commuter none of them would be practical. The 1990 Mazda 626 is lucky to get 20 mpg around town. The 1999 Suburban gets 13-14 mpg on short drives. I would like a mid size PU for most of my trips to Home Depot or shopping. Until they get one that gets decent mileage I'll just use what I have. Remember a big share of the pollution is in the manufacturing of a vehicle.
Nov 19, 2004 (9:09 am)
"I guess you didn't see the rest of my post--I said some people can't afford or don't want two cars."
I hear this argument a lot, but I look around and every one of my neighbors/coworkers has 2 cars: 1 for the husband/1 for the wife, because they work in 2 different locations.
The number of people who don't have 2 cars is an insignifigant amount. The argument has no validity for the majority of Americans.
#353 of 453 Try fitting 3 car seats!
Nov 19, 2004 (9:11 am)
I'm with Kirstie - only with a smaller version of the kids. I would LOVE a hybrid minivan. You cannot fit 3 Britex car seats in the back of an Altima, a Prius and certainly not an Insight. (I know, I tried the neighbors').
During the triathlon season, there are weekends where 3 car seats, my bike and gear all get loaded into the minivan and off we go (no airports for us - too expensive). I'd love a hybrid version.
#354 of 453 Re: Try fitting 3 car seats! [Sylvia]
Nov 19, 2004 (10:06 am)
I would imagine there will be at least 3 hybrid SUVs on the market before they build a mini-van hybrid. Another option will be the Honda Odyssey V6 with VCM. It should get close to 30 mpg.
Nov 19, 2004 (11:02 am)
Toyota has sold the Estima minivan in Japan for about 2 years now. I don't understand why they won't bring it over to the USA.
#356 of 453 Re: [electrictroy]
Nov 19, 2004 (12:11 pm)
They could bring it as the Scion xD.
#357 of 453 Re: [electrictroy]
Nov 19, 2004 (2:02 pm)
The argument has no validity for the majority of Americans.
I don't know about the majority, but in large cities (in the Northeast especially) it's a pricey proposition to own (and park and insure) two cars. And they have good public transportation in cities like New York and Chicago, so you can get by with only one car. The train uses a lot less gas than even an Insight.
#358 of 453 Re: [backy]
Nov 19, 2004 (3:52 pm)
Not many cities have great rapid transit. In Southern CA the average commute is 32.4 miles round trip. Over 90% are solo drivers. I would bet no one leaves there wife at home without a car to drive. Even the poorest families in CA have at least two vehicles. most have more than that. I consider San Diego way over crowded, I cannot imagine living in NYC or Chicago..