Last post on Jan 12, 2009 at 3:47 PM
You are in the Saturn VUE Green Line Hybrid
What is this discussion about?
Saturn VUE, Hybrid Cars, Fuel Efficiency (MPG), SUV
#62 of 84 Breakeven Point....
Nov 10, 2008 (11:14 am)
No one talks on this site and then there are 15 posts in less than a week. Go figure.
A person feeling they are doing the right thing by being more "Green" is admirable and priceless. A person feeling they are saving a lot of money is not looking at the total cost. -- Kip
I have looked at the costs, will use my numbers and you can be the judge.
Since, I have driven the furthest and gotten the best documented gas mileage of any Saturn Hybrid Vue owner here is my bottom line on my BREAKEVEN point:
Back in December of 2006 Hybrid Vue cost $2250 less that the Regular view.
I received a $650 tax credit on my 2006 income taxes $2250 - $650 = $1600 difference.
In the first two years of operation I have saved $1002.78 in gas. That figure is derived from the fact that the Regular Vue gets 5 mpg less that of the Hybrid Vue.
Source = FuelEconomy.gov 2007 Hybrid Vue 23 City 29 highway 26 avg
2007 Regular 4 cyl Automatic 19 City 25 highway 21 avg
I have taken the 5 mpg difference, computed the savings for each tank and have added up the savings. As of 11/7/2008 my 59,095 miles equates to a savings of $1002.78.
Source - my excel spreadsheet.
$1600 - $1002.78 = $597.22 I still have $597.22 to breakeven. That should occur in the next 14 - 16 months based upon my current driving patterns and gas prices of around $2.50.
Therefore, strickly on a cost/gas basis I breakeven in 3 years and a few months.
However, that does not take into consideration that the resale value of a Hybrid Vue vs a similarly equiped Vue. According to Kelly's Blue Book = my Saturn Hybrid Vue would net in excellent condition $11,670 vs a similarly configured excellent condition 4cyl Vue at $8,655. A difference of $3,015.
Therefore, if I sold my Hybrid Vue tomorrow I would would still be in the hole $597.22 but get $3,015 more. Therefore, I would net $2,417.78. Looking at the big picture I have already reached the breakeven point and continue to increase my value.
In addition, one must also consider the environmental benefits. Using the 5 mgp better figure from Fuel Economy.gov - I have already saved 335.044 gallons of gas.
If down the road the Hybrid will need a new battery I will be well on the positive side of the equation. The cost of a new battery and installation should be offset by my gas/cost and resale value benefits.
#1> BREAKEVEN Point has been reached regardless of if I need a new battery at 100,000 miles or not.
#2> I am up $2,417.78.
#3> I have saved 335.044 gallons in the process.
#4> Not to mention I love driving my Saturn Hybrid Vue.
#63 of 84 Re: Breakeven Point.... [hybridvue]
Nov 10, 2008 (2:18 pm)
"Back in December of 2006 Hybrid Vue cost $2250 less that the Regular view."
Did you mean to say the Hybrid was cheaper, or was that a type-O?
If the Hybrid was cheaper, you would have been ahead with the Hybrid as soon as you drove off the dealer lot. Great deal!
At present time the Hybrids are $27930 and the gasser 4 cylinders are $23050 MSRP. According to Edmunds.
Tax credits and "dealing" have to also fall into the mix.
#64 of 84 Re: Compare Honda CRV vs Vue Hybrid [kipk]
Nov 10, 2008 (6:37 pm)
Happy Veterans Day. Semper Fi. I spent 6 years in the service.
Since you state you are considering a hybrid. Would I buy a 2008 Hybrid Vue? The answer is no. Saturn has significantly jacked up the price on the 2008 GreenLines. I think the payback is questionable on the 2008s. I also think Saturn has to demonstrate they have fixed the electical harness and battery problems that plagued the 2007s. Read my other posts. I am pretty darn hard on Saturn.
I purchased my 2007 GreenLine using a discount. Also had 0% financing. Very significant discount on the extended warranty. Overall, I got a pretty good deal on the 2007 GreenLine. I like getting 26-28 mpg on the commute. I keep my cars 6-8 yrs. Ask me what I think of the Hybrid Vue in 5-6 yrs.
The question is the price for plug-in hybrids that will be out in 2009-2010? What is hybrid surcharge and what will the payback point be?
Sorry that you feel I am being dishonest about my comparison, but I stand by my evaluation.I really feel crammed into the CRV. It is very uncomfortable for me. Head room, leg room, shoulder room issues. Ergonomics? Usable room?
This will be my last post on the issue.
#65 of 84 Re: Compare Honda CRV vs Vue Hybrid [chmsomm]
Nov 11, 2008 (5:49 am)
Happy veterans day.
I don't feel at all that you are being dishonest. As I said before, it is most likely a Perception is Reality thing. In this case it could have a lot to do with where you are seated in each vehicle and so forth. I apologize for anything that sounded like accusations on my part.
Twelve years ago I bought a new 06 Dodge Ram Pickup. A few months later a friend bought a New 07 model with the same drive train. Of course we had to "test" them. It was pretty much a dead heat 3 times. He later had a fairly expensive "Cat Back" duel exhaust system installed and a K&M intake. His truck sounded good and seemed to have a lot more power, to both of us. Another "Test" resulted in my truck being a little quicker than his, 3 times. The exhaust tones and noisy intake gave the perception of more power. Perception!
Please stick around and participate on the subject.
I'm trying to make an informed decision. Without participation, it will be most difficult.
Thanks for your insight on the 08 Vue
What is/was the problem with wiring and batteries on the Vue?
#66 of 84 Re: Compare Honda CRV vs Vue Hybrid [kipk]
Nov 11, 2008 (7:03 am)
You said 12 years ago you bought a 06 Dodge Ram Pickup. Did I just miss a few years as this is only 08 or at least I thought it was when I woke up.
#67 of 84 Re: Compare Honda CRV vs Vue Hybrid [dmathews3]
Nov 11, 2008 (7:34 am)
Apparently the caffeine had not kicked in yet when I wrote that!
Please substitute the 06 and 07 numbers to 96 and 97.
#68 of 84 Re: Breakeven Point.... [kipk]
Nov 12, 2008 (7:43 am)
Typo on my part -
Back in December of 2006 Hybrid Vue cost $2250 MORE that the Regular view. The numbers in my situation follow my logic.
One should run the numbers prior to making a decision. If the Hybrid is substantially more expensive and federal tax credits are considerably less or zero - those are factors to consider in your purchase. Back in 2006 the difference was small. Seems for the 2008 models that gap has widened.
The issue Saturn had with was with a potentially faulty wiring harness. The fix was not intended to impact your hybrid operation one way or the other UNLESS your vehicle is one that has the wiring / alternator issue. To over-simplify, the wiring harness can intermittently mis-communicate with the alternator. The alternator says "I don't know what you're trying to tell me to do, so I won't do anything". That includes charging the batteries. The fix is a more robust harness to alternator interaction via the replacement harness. Again, I am over-simplifying, but hopefully now you get the gist.
I had it replaced in March of 2007. I did not have any problems before or after the installation.
#69 of 84 Re: Breakeven Point.... [hybridvue]
Nov 12, 2008 (10:30 am)
Saturn let us drive off the lot after we purchased the GreenLine in 2007, when they knew there were problems with the harnesses. Ours went bad in local driving, we had it towed from our house to the dealer. Nice to know they were willing to risk our lives to save themselves the cost of the replacement. Saturn later issued a recall for the harnesses. I was one of the people who filed complaints with the NTSB.
I have not had problems since the electrical harness was replaced. Knock on wood.
I will be taking my 2007 GreenLine in for routine service in December. At that time I will have have the battery examined (batteries were recalled due to voltage imbalance problems about 6 months ago?) when I take it in. The charge/assist seems to be fine at the present.
Have not heard anything about the 2008s, hence my comments about not recommending one until word was out on correction of those problems (harness and battery).
#70 of 84 Is this correct?
Nov 13, 2008 (3:43 am)
Are these correct statements?
The "electric" portion of the GL is to allow the gas engine to shut off for a predetermined time at stop signs, red lights and so forth, and the "battery" keeps the AC radio and other accessories operating.
Forward or rearward propulsion of the car is dependent on the gas engine, and the electric motor is never the only source of propulsion..
The purpose of the "electric" motor is to help the gas engine during acceleration , and help in re charging the "battery" while braking.
Are those accurate statements? If not, please explain.
#71 of 84 Re: Is this correct? [kipk]
Nov 13, 2008 (6:42 am)
Yes those statements are accurate.
The Saturn Vue Hybrid models 2007 and 2008 are based upon the BAS system - for belt alternator starter.
Basically, BAS is a big motor-generator in place of the vehicle's normal alternator. The big motor can deliver 6.7 horsepower at speed, and 48 pounds-feet of torque the moment it begins to turn, according to Saturn. That's enough to run the gasoline engine by turning the serpentine belt — "fan belt" to old-timers — on the front of the engine.
The Green Line's belt is wider and beefier than normal to handle the extra strain.
Other hybrids link their gasoline and electric powerplants through the transmissions. Those vehicles use sophisticated computer programs and complicated transmissions to blend the gasoline and electric power outputs for smooth operation.
Because the Vue Green Line's gasoline engine is always doing the driving — even when it's being spun by the BAS system — the transmission and powertrain controller can be simpler and cheaper.
The Green Line's gasoline engine often shuts off when the vehicle is stopped longer than a moment, such as at a red light. No need to burn fuel when you're not going anywhere. The Saturn Hybrid can not drive soley on electric. It always needs gasoline to propel the car. The electric is used to assist the car.
The moment you take your foot off the brake, the robust starter-generator turns the belt, which turns the gasoline engine and drives the vehicle for a second or two until the engine's fuel supply is restored and the engine is up to speed.
For my 2007 Saturn Vue Hybrid - the transition at stop lights from the engine running to off to running again is seemless. As for coasting and braking - this charges up the Hybrid battery. Also, when starting out - acceleration will also charge the battery.
Hope that clears up the setup for the Saturn Hybrid Vue. By the way, I just notched another 34+mpg tank. Not bad for November.