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Hybrids - News, Reviews and Views in the Press

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  • terry92270terry92270 Posts: 1,247
    Your figures are unreasonable low, but when I post here, please forgive me that I do not delve into the technical issues as deeply as you, and some others do.

    The Hybrid advantage, fuel-wise, is about 35-45%, as they have a tendency to train drivers, by their displays, to drive more efficiently. My use of the term "double" wasn't meant to be technically correct (it was just a post to make a point about savings being savings) and it was indeed the wrong word to use. It doesn't invalidate the point I was making, however.

    Often times I am mistaken in expecting others not to be so totally literal in examining each and every post, for a flaw to point out. That expectation is unreasonable, as some people are just that way, totally literal about everything. That is my bad. :)
  • tpetpe Posts: 2,342
    The only reason I took your post literally is because I've heard people claim that the Prius got double the mileage of the Camry and that's exactly what they meant. The implication is that these are comparable vehicles therefore hybrid technology doubles your mileage. Apparently you realize that is an exaggeration but not everyone does.

    The belief that hybrids train drivers to operate their vehicles more efficiently is valid. There are a lot of people advocating this type of instantaneous fuel consumption gauge be put into all vehicles as an effective, relatively cheap way to reduce consumption. I believe it would work.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    I think it would be a great advancement at minimal cost.
    Some things it's taught me...

    Drive on local streets as often as possible in my Prius
    Drive on the highway as often as possible in the Highlander.
    Heavy rain reduces fuel economy about 15%.
    Strong headwinds reduce fuel economy about 10%.
    The winter driving penalty is 8-12%
    Short trips kill fuel economy by nearly 40%
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,863
    "Drive on local streets as often as possible in my Prius
    Drive on the highway as often as possible in the Highlander.
    Heavy rain reduces fuel economy about 15%.
    Strong headwinds reduce fuel economy about 10%.
    The winter driving penalty is 8-12%
    Short trips kill fuel economy by nearly 40%"

    Man I hope those aren't cumulative. Driving in heavy rain with a headwind in the winter on a short trip would be a reduction of 72%! :surprise:
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    They are cumulative which is why people complain so much about certain driving situaitons and wonder 'Why....?'

    Winter driving in Minn at 70 mph into a strong Northwind will kill FE.

    Short trips of 10 min or less in Winter in Ohio will cut a Prius' City FE to the low 30's from an EPA normal of 60 mpg.

    It's not only the hybrids that this applies to, it's all vehicles. A V6 Fusion, Avalon, Malibu under these conditions might only get 12 mpg iso 24/25 mpg under normal EPA conditions.
  • tpetpe Posts: 2,342
    I think the newer battery technologies being developed will significantly improve a hybrid's winter performance.
  • shasta67shasta67 Posts: 109

    Let me get this straight. My Prius gets totalled and Toyota will come out and get the battery and give me $200? I don't think so. You will have to find someone willing to take the risk to remove the 100 pound HIGH Voltage possibly leaking battery and haul it into the Toyota dealer. You think anyone will do that for $200? It is part of the joke on those thinking Toyota is green.


    Well I have to admit I don't know everything about Hybrids or if they will become the dominate engine type. I do know quite a lot about alternative energy and the mindset of companies that produce them. I work for and at a company that has the worlds largest solar powerplants and our company is also the largest producer of wind energy in the US. About the only thing I agree with gagrice on is Toyota is not truly green. They are "green" because they feel it will be very profitable to be so. I agree with them 100% on this one.

    Most large manufacturing companies are required to have a plan for recycling their used products. Most do not do this directly but have to have a plan and in many cases to pay for someone else to do it. Toyota also serves another purpose by doing it themselves. That is public image.

    oh I almost forgot. Gagrice how much do you want for that bridge?
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,863
    "It's not only the hybrids that this applies to, it's all vehicles. A V6 Fusion, Avalon, Malibu under these conditions might only get 12 mpg iso 24/25 mpg under normal EPA conditions."

    Hmmm, 72% of 25 is ... 7 MPG . My 2003 CR-V performed in these conditions showed perhaps a 10% (or less) penalty (depending on the strength of the headwind - I suspect 70 would result in around 30%). So my highway MPG would go from 27 to around 19 MPG. However, at 80 MPH speed and a 70 MPH headwind, that would be a speed of 150 MPH effective, so I doubt I would be going that fast. I'd probably be doing around 60, which nets over 30 MPG, resulting in around 21 MPG overall. I can live with that for an AWD SUV.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The key reducer in this equation is the short trip penalty. It's almost impossible to measure this without a scan gauge or a MFD/bar graph such as on the hybrids. One could certainly use the trip computer if there is one but it would have to be zero'd at the end of each short trip and each trip plotted over several tanks at least.

    Without these tools, in order to find your real fuel economy over several tanks you'd have to drive only short 10 min trips all the time nothing longer. I'll venture that if your CR-V is 20/27 that if you put a scan gauge on it in winter for just the short 10 min trips that you'd find 13-15 mpg. At the end of 10 min turn it off and let it cool down to cold again.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    10 Best Daily Grind cars

    Prius, TCH, Escape Hybrid make cut as does MB E320 BlueTec.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 3,863
    "I'll venture that if your CR-V is 20/27 that if you put a scan gauge on it in winter for just the short 10 min trips that you'd find 13-15 mpg. At the end of 10 min turn it off and let it cool down to cold again."

    Ummm, difficult to say. My trips were 10 minutes, drop off the kids, 10 minutes, then 10 minutes at lunch, 10 minutes after lunch, then 10 minutes home. I didn't let the car cool down, but then, how realistic is that? At these useages I generally got 20 - 21 MPG. But I was careful with the throttle and not rushing at stoplights.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 29,173
    today’s commuters. It includes the Toyota Prius, Suzuki SX4, Ford Focus, Hyundai Sonata, Toyota Camry Hybrid, Acura RL, Mercedes-Benz E320 BlueTec, Ford Escape Hybrid, Ford Edge and the Porsche Carrera 4.

    Give me the Carrera or E320 Blutec, you can have the rest. I cannot think of any thing fun about an hours commute. At least the car would be fun.

    For anyone wanting to buy that bridge in Havasu it will be 8 bucks and I take PayPal :shades:
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Nice little review of the Altima Hybrid with some commentary inside

    Love this quote:

    Hybrid doubters — who once railed that the batteries were sketchy, the costs of the so-called hybrid premium unrecoverable, the mileage gains overstated, and so on — are beginning to look like the Flat Earth Society.

    LOVE THAT ANALOGY !!! :shades:
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    :( Damn plagerizer...Gotta call my lawyer about this writer. :P

    Post #241 10-7-05

    Post #930 2-13-06

    Post #4194 7-12-06

    Post #33 12-16-06
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Yep, you were on top of that a long time ago...:)
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
    quote-
    Earlier this month, Nissan exec Dominique Thormann admitted the company was building the Altima hybrid at a loss only to comply with California's partial zero emission vehicle mandate, which has been adopted by seven Northeastern states as well.
    -end

    Sold in only 8 states and sold at a loss. To satisfy a CARB mandate, not market demand. :sick:

    quote-
    It's worth noting, incidentally, that the recent downturn in Toyota hybrid sales is probably due to the shrinking tax credit on them, because Toyota was the first manufacturer to hit the 60,000-unit mark, after which by rule the tax credit decreases. The Altima hybrid seems like a good way to get a Camry hybrid-esque car and still get the full credit.
    -end

    Tax welfare for new car buyers. :surprise:
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    quote-
    It's worth noting, incidentally, that the recent downturn in Toyota hybrid sales is probably due to the shrinking tax credit on them, because Toyota was the first manufacturer to hit the 60,000-unit mark, after which by rule the tax credit decreases. The Altima hybrid seems like a good way to get a Camry hybrid-esque car and still get the full credit.
    -end


    Actually this is untrue. It's bad reporting and lacks any analytical talent or effort. Reports like this are often picked up off the wire and reguritated without any verification.

    Hybrid sales up 13.8%

    Prius sales up slightly vs 2005
    TCH sales 3100 units are additional
    HH/400h sales 3000 units down about 20% vs 2005
    HCH sales up 6% vs 2005
    FEH/MMH sales up 32% vs 2005

    Overall sales are up 13.8% vs Nov 2005.

    Lazy people trying to appear smart irk me.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
    Actually this is untrue. It's bad reporting and lacks any analytical talent or effort. Reports like this are often picked up off the wire and reguritated without any verification.

    Hybrid sales up 13.8%

    Sales Slow for Hybrids

    quote-
    Hybrids accounted for only 1.52 percent of all vehicles sold in November. That's down from 1.77 percent in August, but up from 1.38 percent in November 2005, according to Edmunds. -end

    Up from 2005, still not even 2.0% of sales.

    For the Prius, days supply rose to 47 in November from seven in August, according to Toyota spokesman Xavier Dominicis.

    47 days supply from 7, that is a huge change.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    It's true.

    There was a press release a couple of months ago that they were going to double the shipments of Prius' now. Why Now? I'm guessing that with KY coming on stream that the line making the Prius was also making the TCH. When KY began making them it freed up capacity for more Prius'. This is only supposition though.

    Nov sales are slightly higher than last year but Days Supply jumped from 7 to 47!!! It can only be extra shipments.

    Maybe they are going to get agressive on the Prius as it enters it's last 18 mo's. They've covered their fixed costs and now they are going to push the volume up, even with discounts, in order to make some money??
  • goodcrdgoodcrd Posts: 253
    moparbad,
    Your not going to get an honest straight answer from kdhspyder. He sells Toyota's for a living. He will slant and spin whatever he needs to sell his "Toyota" products. He is a car salesman!! Car buyers who are financially smart will buy a vehicle which get good fuel economy bought at a reasonable price. I'd buy a Corolla before I'd buy a Prius. It just makes better dollar and cents. I used Toyota's just not to hurt kdhspyders feelings. I believe GM's Mild hybrid approach will be more cost effective. Compare the Saturn Vue and the Toyota Highlander Hybrids. Two different approaches one which is more cost effective.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Hush... we've been having an intelligent interchange for over a year now and I've learned a lot from Mr. moparbad.

    YOu too are entitled to your opinion. Enjoy your life.

    BTW: You are right about the Corolla or Civic or Versa or Yaris. If all you want is good solid basic transportation all of these are better choices than any $20000 vehicle. But we covered that last year.

    I tell this to all my clients :shades: "If you are looking to save money on transportation, DON'T buy a Prius or TCH. Buy a 3-4 y.o. Civic or Corolla with 40,000 miles on it for $11000. That's a much better choice."

    However there is a whole segment of buyers for whom $25,000 to $30,000 is what they expect and want to pay for a vehicle. In this range the Prius is a bargain. The TCH even more so.
  • goodcrdgoodcrd Posts: 253
    "I tell this to all my clients "If you are looking to save money on transportation, DON'T buy a Prius or TCH. Buy a 3-4 y.o. Civic or Corolla with 40,000 miles on it for $11000. That's a much better choice." "

    I'd buy one at an auto auction before I'd buy it from a dealer. Save myself about $6K and wouldn't have to deal with a "Saleman" while buying a used car. But for 25 to 30K a New LOADED Chevy Impala is a much better buy. Safer too.

    What about the comparison between a Saturn Vue hybrid and Toyota Highlander. Well! What holding you back? Lets have your spin on it.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    I dodn't know anything about the Vue except that it shares the platform with the Equinox. If that's the case it not much of a competitor for the Highlander, which is a decontented Lexus.

    Quick lookup here at Edmunds brings up this comment on the Vue:
    Below-average build quality, undersized front seats, vague steering, missing some popular convenience and safety features.

    Based on this it's hardly in the Lexus/Highlander class. Probably why it's under the radar for most people.

    The 400h/HH are designed for performance with 265+ combined HP with fuel economy as a secondary benefit. The current Vue Greenline is based on a 2.4L with a BAS assist but only 160+ HP. Again these are not in the same class.

    The EPA Fuel Economy benefits are....
    HH/400h ..+25-30%
    Vue Greenline .. +15%
    Again not much to get excited about here

    Quick summary:
    The Vue is one of the General's quick fixes with mediocre build quality ( CR gives it a black mark for reliability ); mediocre performance and so-so fuel economy.

    But it is cheaper to buy.

    Now in fairness this Greenline was a stop-gap measure. The new announcement at the LAIAS about the 2-mode linked to the 3.5L with 45% better FE is something GM can be proud about... when it actually does hit the streets.
  • goodcrdgoodcrd Posts: 253
    Your numbers are slanted. The fuel economy numbers are very close to the Toy. Vue has better hwy and lower city. Overall they are about the same. Over the next two years it will out sell the Highlander Hybrid by 50%. I drove a Highlander hybrid and wasn't impressed. I ended up buying a liberty CRD because it performed and handled much better. My ex wife's highlander couldn't make it up my back driveway in the winter. Plus in the rain the Highlander plows forward instead of turning while moderately braking. As for not being in the same class. They are about the same size the Toyota is just uglier.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Now you are just being silly and making yourself look foolish.

    Are you really saying that it's good that
    the 2.4L 170 HP Vue Greenline gets 27 City and 32 Highway
    whereas..
    the 3.3L V6 268 HP Highlander Hybrid gets 32 City and 27 Highway

    That's pretty good that a 4c can get the same FE values as a V6 with 100 additional HP. Please be serious. Until GM improves the quality of the Vue/Equinox it will never be in the class of the Highlander quality-wise, performance-wise
    or volume-wise.

    Now if the 2-mode is real and performs as stated then GM may have a competitive vehicle. Highlander is due to be redone this summer. It's a moving target. The current Vue is a weak shadow of this 5 y.o. model it won't even see the sun against the new model.

    Congratulations on your Liberty purchase. I was a sole supplier to Jeep for 15 years. They are an American icon.
  • goodcrdgoodcrd Posts: 253
    The combined number is 29 for both. And its subjective opinion on which is a better vehicle. The highlander is not worth 10K more then the Vue (my opinion). But I like the mild hybrid design of the vue much better then the overpriced system in the Highlander. What I really want is a Commander with the 3.0 CRD option. They don't sell it here. I drove one when I was in Australia. The interior styling could have been better but is was great to drive. Now if they would use a hybrid EV Allison trans with this Commander 3.0 CRD that would temp me to put out 40k+ for that vehicle. Should get around 28 HWY and 30 city. Add the ad blue system then the EPA should be happy.
  • john1701ajohn1701a Posts: 1,897
    > But I like the mild hybrid design of the vue much better then the overpriced system in the Highlander.

    Overpriced?

    It's a more powerful system that is quite a bit better loaded. Heck, just the Multi-Display alone is dramatically more expensive than the "Eco" indicator light in so-called competition.

    Highlander-Hybrid will later be available in 4-cylinder version. Add the missing components to Vue-Hybrid, then compare prices.

    After that, consider the upcoming "full" hybrid version of Vue-Hybrid.

    JOHN
  • goodcrdgoodcrd Posts: 253
    Bells and whistles!!!! The end result is still the same. Vue is a 5 passenger suv 29 mpg's combined, which is more affordable and not as ugly as the Highlander.

    Merry Christmas.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Summary:
    The Vue Greenline would be for a buyer looking for good fuel economy, weak to mild power, minimal amenities and questionable build quality and reliability... at a very affordable price.

    Someone looking for more in their vehicle might consider paying more for their choice and getting a lot more in return by buying a HH/400h

    That's why there are so many choices in this market. There is a vehicle for every wallet and for every choice. This is good.
  • wvgasguywvgasguy Posts: 1,405
    Heavy rain reduces fuel economy about 15%.
    Strong headwinds reduce fuel economy about 10%.
    The winter driving penalty is 8-12%
    Short trips kill fuel economy by nearly 40%


    HEY Bob, after a couple of cold weather, high speed, highway milage tanks getting 34 to 35 mpg over Christmas, I am feeling good with this current warm weather streak proving to me that my milage will indeed return this spring. My current tank FE on local roads is 41 with 300 miles on this tank.

    Cold weather did make it more difficult on short trips but short trips in general have not hurt me. I live about 2 miles from town and when I make the trip into town and back, even with a cold engine, I still get around 40 mpg. Considering my lifetime FE is 39mpg after 18,500 miles (Camry Hybrid) then it appears the short trips are not hurting me as I am able to maintain my average. However I believe terrain plays a big part. I live on a hill and when I pull out of my garage with a cold engine it runs all the way down the hill, but I am still gliding with no load on the engine while it warms up. I lose going back up the hill but I don't take a big hit on the warm up because I'm all down hill while it warms up.

    My highway milage is real close to EPA. I can easily obtain 38 driving the limit and driving "normal" I can always get 36 to 37 in rural mountain 4 lane driving. My rural 2 lane driving is where the TCH shines as I can get anywhere from 40 to 43 all the time.

    I still cannot see the downside that many are worried about economically. My monthly gas bill is less than half what it used to be, my car payment dropped $200/month AND in a couple of months I'll file my first tax return with the $2600 Federal and a $1250 State credit (that one is for 3 years). The credits put my LOADED TCH at a cost of less than $24000. This car cannot depreciate more than $24000 so even if I throw it away when I'm done it's going to be a better deal than just about anything I've drove over the last 15 years.
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