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Jetta TDI vs. Civic Hybrid



  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    quote gagrice-"Do you know anyone with an HCH that has a very short 3-4 mile commute. I would be curious as to the overall mileage that person gets."-end quote


    That person would get barely in the 40s I'd bet. Like any car, a hybrid needs time to warmup before the engine becomes most efficient.


    My little 93.1 MPG in 3 miles trip WAS with a warmed up car, in temps in the 60s. That was not a cold start run !!! :)


    I merely brought that up to demonstrate that the Hybrids can get remarkable MPG under certain circumstances because of their technology.
  • mistermemisterme Posts: 407
    My wife occasionally uses my HCH to drop/pickup the kids at school, about 4 miles round trip.


    She isn't very skilled at driving for efficiency, I guess is a "normal" driver and usually gets 45-49MPG round trip.


    Otherwise my daily commute is 93miles round trip.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,710
    "..."quote z28_sedan-"'m not sure what all the fighting is about. I was considering both (along with a Prius and a TDI Passat). They're all good choices, IMHO. I chose a TDI Jetta because I could get a used one for $11K, I drive mostly highway, and I want to eventually run B100."-end quote


    GREAT POST !! That's EXACTLY what I have been trying to show on this forum.


    People should find the car that fits their needs and their budget, and BUY IT !!


    Here is an example of a chap who had the Jetta TDI as his best choice and bought it.


    I happen to think that choice is in the minority, but it shows what I have been pointing out.


    I chose the HCH because it met my budget and my needs and I LIKE spending less than $54 a month on fuel, which is where I have been in the last 6 months. "...


    Well, perhaps you just needed someone else to say what you think you really meant to say! Because the majority of what you did say, does not jive with what you think you really wanted to say.


    "I happen to think that choice is in the minority, but it shows what I have been pointing out. "


    To put the above quoted sentence in perspective, both the TDI and especially the hybrid are both "minority" positions . Some industry analysts put the TDI figure at between 2.3-2.9%. So if you are talking of 230 M registered vehicles, per NHTSA, that meets the definition of "minority"


    All that has to be done to really heat up the interest in TDI's is for the gas price to be jacked up! Any takers for 3.00 per gal of unleaded regular? Keep in mind that in Europe the % of the diesel passenger fleet is app 50%. Unleaded regular in the UK is app 6 dollars US per USA gal. (128 oz)
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    the world by storm, no doubt there.


    I think it's just education and supply problems right now. And cost.


    Over time, as more Hybrid models come out, more people understand you "dont have to plug them in" and the batteries become cheaper (leading to lower new car sales prices) the popularity will improve and sales will climb. Most of the industry prognosticators agree on that projection.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,710
    The truth is that the EXACT same conditions exist for the TDI. Obviously, the battery issue does not apply.


    I actually considered the Civic and Prius hybrid, Civic gasser, Jetta and Beetle TDI. Drove them all. Out of all of them,the Jetta and Beetle were the most fun to drive. The nod for GEEWIZ went to the Prius and Civic hybrid. For its intended purposes: commuting and ability to double as a semi good long distance fuel sipper travel car, the Jetta TDI and the Civic 4 door auto got the nods.
  • mistermemisterme Posts: 407
    Exact conditons do not exist.


    Diesels have a blotted history plagued with problems.

    Hybrids are new.


    When considering a Jetta TDI, it didn't even get a geewiz nod.

    The nod was just simply "no".
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,852
    Diesels have a blotted history plagued with problems


    Could it be that people keep diesels for longer. How many gas engines run for 300-400-500-or a million miles? Percentage wise the diesel is a longer lived vehicle. The fact that they spewed black soot is on the government not the car owner. They could have mandated low sulfur diesel when they mandated unleaded gas. Your government in action. Not my doing.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,710
    My "exact" response was to post 422.


    But I also would agree with post 425. Time and mileage will tell how your description of "newness wears"


    I would also agree that low sulfur diesel could have been mandated to take place when there was a switch to unleaded gasoline in the late 70's. In my view, the government missed the boat on that almost a generation ago.
  • mistermemisterme Posts: 407
    ...Which begs the question of how many diesel autos have crossed the million mile mark, and how many without major problems along the way?


    I've never heard of anyone keeping their automobile for even 400K miles.

    I knew someone who's Toyota lasted 350miles and he still drove it.

    I rode in it only once and not again, due to excessive suspension slop it was scary.


    How long would it take to rack up a million on a personal auto? 50 years?


    May I venture to suggest most people replace their auto in 3-7 years? Some people hold out for 10 years, me included. It seems that 7-10 years is the magic time for diesel autos to start puffin soot.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,710
    "May I venture to suggest most people replace their auto in 3-7 years? Some people hold out for 10 years, me included. It seems that 7-10 years is the magic time for diesel autos to start puffin soot. "


    You can do a goggle (don't know really why I did this) but I looked at auto salvage industry statistics: that cars are kept an average of 8.5 years and the average salvage per year is something like 8%.


    I will let you know in 5 to 8 years about the "puffin soot" :)
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,852
    May I venture to suggest most people replace their auto in 3-7 years?


    I used to be one that traded every 3-4 years. I finally grew up and realized how much money I was throwing down the toilet. My wife's two cars are going on 16 years old and both run fine. They are low mileage and maintained properly.


    ...Which begs the question of how many diesel autos have crossed the million mile mark, and how many without major problems along the way?


    A couple years ago I was researching Mercedes diesels and I ran across a company that buys used MB 300D automobiles for their sales staff. The owner buys them with 150-200k miles at a very good price. He claims many of them went over a million miles before being salvaged out for parts. Try that with any Japanese car. I had a friend with a Nissan PU that had 250k miles and still ran OK. It was very rusted and the upholstery was about gone.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,710
    Yeah, actually as I was saying in another post, for example some of the high quality is actually hidden. The VW Jetta for example has a 12 year rust guarantee vs a Honda's of 5 years. So that would beg the question, if the Honda car is kept for only 3-5 years, who cares? I have never seen any thread where the Honda owner complains that his sheet metal is not made of galvanized steel, like the VW, for example.


    As other folks have posted they treat the Honda Civic as a 3-5 year time horizon, i.e., "throw away type item"


    To buy a used average older Japanese car with 150-250,000 miles would probably not be a wise move for a mobile sales staff. Whereas it probably works with the older Mercedes'


    So for me with a goal of 500,000 to 1,000,000 miles for planning purposes, the VW 12 year rust through is an interesting indicator. Right away I know with my consumption level, for planning puposes it is good to go for at least 350,000 miles.


    While I have kept Japanese SUV's for app 250,000 miles and 14 years, I did have to pay extra attention to the rust issue to make sure it would go the distance. The other thing is that the Toyota Landcruiser had a much heavier gauge sheet metal than other Toyota vehicles.
  • mistermemisterme Posts: 407
    You're right about throwing money away by replacing autos after only a few years.


    But I'm not sure about "a company" owner "a couple of years ago" who "claims" over a "million miles".

    I'm not doubting you, only the undocumented reference as hear-say.


    "Try that with any Japanese car"

    My friend's Toyota lasted +350 miles and ran good enough to get down the road, but I wouldn't ride in it again.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    "How long would it take to rack up a million on a personal auto? 50 years?"-end quote


    A very long time. Even if you drove for a living and put 200 miles PER DAY, that's only 73,000 miles a year. That's 13.7 years to get 1 million miles. Driving normally (about 20K a year) would take 50 years.


    I put 263,000 miles on a "gas engine Japanese" 1980 Nissan 200SX in about 8 years, an average of about 33K per year. It had 323,000 miles on it when I junked it. The driveshaft was going out, and I had replaced the radiator and the clutch, but other than that, it was mecahnically sound.


    Diesel engines are a better design for extremely high miles over the life of the engine, but that does not make them the only type of engines that can perform such feats.
  • john500john500 Posts: 409
    Is there data from Europe that suggests converting to low sulfur diesel will reduce the particle formation (soot)? I thought that low sulfur fuel was implemented strictly to reduce acid rain formation after sulfur comustion (S -> SO3 + water -> sulfuric acid) and that the diesel sparkless ignition (incomplete combustion) was responsible for soot formation.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,852
    I put 263,000 miles on a "gas engine Japanese" 1980 Nissan 200SX in about 8 years


    You, myself and others got real good service from the early model Datsun/Nissan cars. Unlike my 1978 Honda Accord. Heating problems destroyed the engine at 69k miles. It was a pile of rust and problems when I traded it in 1985. What is kind of ironic is I tried buying a diesel VW when I ended up with the Honda. There were waiting lists for at least a year for the diesel Rabbit & Dasher. I took a chance on the Honda. I bought it at a Honda motorcycle shop. No Honda car dealers in MN.


    Now move up to the present. You are telling me that Honda is more reliable historically than the VW. I just did a quick check of cars for sale on eBay. There are 191 VW vehicles for sale built prior to 1978. You know how many Honda's for sale built prior to 1978? One 1969 model 600 with 40,916 miles on it. The rest of the old Honda's are rust or crushed. When you talk of reliability and longevity. Honda does Not have a great history, other than a blip the last 10 years. And 2004 was not a great year for Honda with the problems that are coming out with the 2001-2004 transmissions. I will never put a million miles on a car. I want a car that will run good at 15 years old with under 100k miles on it. Heat is the worst thing for electronics. I don't want a lot of electronics that age sitting in the sun day in and day out. Then just when I need the car some sensor keeps it from starting. I think that lapdogman is experiencing problems with his HCH as a result of heat cooking some widget in the IMA system that is giving him and the dealer fits. I feel for the dealers also. They are stuck trying to fix these odd ball cars that the manufacturers dump on them. Probably send a tech to an 8 hour class and expect them to understand the whole complex system. For long term reliability simple is best.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Back to the previously stated average of 8.5 years per car. People dont WANT TO BUY 197x cars.


    The reason all those old VWs are for sale on E-Bay (a TERRIBLE AWFUL way to buy a car) is that "nobody wants to buy them !!!!"


    191 vehicles built prior to 1978 is great, if you want an old beatup car that will require you to perform repairs or pay to repair every single defect that the car will have. Most people just dont want to deal with that stuff !!


    It's not my opinion that most people just DO NOT keep their cars for that long - its a fact. A car is not a long-term investment, it is a short-term CONSUMABLE which is used and then discarded.


    Reliability and Longevity are DEFINITELY two DIFFERENT animals. You can have "longevity" FOREVER as long as you are willing to deal with the RELIABILITY PROBLEMS which will require you to repair the car again and again and again and again and again ad infinitum.


    No car built before 1978 is going to be pleasant to own and drive as a commuter car, and it is not going to stay out of disrepair.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,710
    This title is interesting in that it is not necessarily true, or are you refering to yourself when you kept your Nissan 200SX for 323,000 miles? I am getting the feeling by your title, that you like to pour gasoline on fires to put them out.


    I also think that you are ignoring the massive depreciation that occurs when you buy a new car and also realize when you sell a used car. Or at least you don't make mention of it. There are other infrastructure costs, but that might be a whole other topic of discussion.


    If your Nissan 200SX was mechanically sound, except for the components you mentioned, and other than the fact that you were probably bored and tired of it; (yes money to buy another vehicle, does give one the luxury to be indolent)why did you not just replace those parts? Six hundred dollars (or whatever) is certainly far less money time and committment than 20,000 dollars for a new Honda Civic hybrid.


    So to close, you are the only one making the case that the diesel engine is not ..."the only type of engines that can perform such feats".
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    No, I'm not ignoring depreciation - that the VERY REASON why cars are short term consumables and not investments. They lose value quickly.


    Back in 1991 I traded my 323,000 mile Nissan because it was about to lose the drive shaft and that would have cost me around $600 to repair it. I found a $4000 car to buy and got $300 for my trade. So I gained $900 from the trade (saved $600 on a repair and got $300 credit for trade value) and fact is, old cars reach a point where it is just not financially smart to repair them.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,852
    No car built before 1978 is going to be pleasant to own and drive as a commuter car, and it is not going to stay out of disrepair.


    You missed the point entirely. Not everyone needs a commuter car. I have said on this forum many times that those that have long commutes should look at the 3 hybrids that get great mileage. If you put 20k plus miles on a car per year you are not planning to keep it a real long time. First you want a car that will not let you down on your commute. That is where reliability is important. Not everyone commutes to work. There are millions of cars that get less than 10k miles per year. If they cannot be dependable after 10 years that is not a good car. In your area there are many retired people that don't wear out a car every 8.5 years. If you saw our Lexus sitting on the street and did not know from the body it was a 1990 you would not be able to tell it from a new car. Some people keep cars in perfect condition for a very long time. I believe reliability and longevity are related. Some people take care of their cars others don't. I think we agree that which of these two cars you buy should be based on need, that you laid out pretty well a while back.
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