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Hybrids in the News



  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    How does that match up to the projection by CR on resale value? You say a 5 year old hybrid loses 60-65% of it's original value. That seems like a big hit to me. I mostly have bought PU trucks which don't lose nearly that much.

    I can see that. Someone could buy a Prius with a 140k miles and bring it into CA to get the extra coverage.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    In Vermont at least, the laws say that the extended emissions warranty pertains to "the ultimate purchaser and each subsequent purchaser".
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    I looked for that on the CA website. Never found it. I think VT is similar to CA on emissions if memory serves me. To my way of thinking it should force the auto makers to replace anything that changes the emissions levels. Such as atalytic convertors, sensors etc.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    And in a hybrid... batteries and such.
  • library1library1 Posts: 54
    Value and Cost and Money are three separate items.

    So you "save" X thousand dollars on buying a Corolla. You have little chance of being in an accident, so you have saved some serious money.

    But, if you are hit by some idiot? Maybe the dollar savings are equal to the increased medical costs over an accident in a Prius. But, I will forgoe the PAIN. :sick: It is a cost too.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    But, if you are hit by some idiot? Maybe the dollar savings are equal to the increased medical costs over an accident in a Prius.

    I'm not sure I follow you. The Corolla is rated safer than the Prius for both driver and passenger. According to the NHTSA. If you buy a new Civic it is even safer than the Corolla. So you can save money and your hide.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    ahh.. but as the iihs states, dont compare different weight classes. The NHTSA 'indications' are at best a 'go/no go' guidance. The tests as they admit are outdated and no where near as difficult as the rest of the world's testing.

    According to the iihs every vehicle now is 'Good' in frontal impact protection ( in their more difficult test ) - except the new Fusion for some weird Ford reason and the old Stratus/Sebring.
  • library1library1 Posts: 54
    Look at
    for the IIHS PDF file titled "INJURY, COLLISION, & THEFT LOSSES by make and model, 2002-2004 models"

    CARS Injury (100= average medical costs)

    Toyota Corolla 167
    Toyota Prius 4dr 67
    Honda Civic Hybrid 4dr 89
    Toyota Echo 193 (- my old car!)
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    I don't think they have tested the Prius at IIHS yet, have they? I know the Prius Classic was given a wink by the NHTSA to get them out to the public. They are less than stellar safety wise. I think the truth is they never tested the Prius until 2006 and realized they are not top notch safety wise. What other reason to go from 5 stars to 4 stars?
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    I questioned that very chart a while back. First it does not include the Prius II at all. It is 2001-2003 MY listing. Second according to all I have read the Prius Classic was built on the Echo chassis. So whatever the Echo got should have carried to the Prius. You also have to take into account these are based on actual injuries and costs related to accidents in given vehicles. How many Prius were sold in that 3 year period? How many actually crashed to give a legitimate accounting? I think we will have to wait a while till the database gets a few more collisions to make an honest appraisal of the Prius crash worthiness.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Where did you get these impressions from? Other than 'stirring the pot' as is your inclination ;) .

    The IIHS has not tested the Prius and given it's success I don't know why not. The NHTSA tests every vehicle, I'm assuming admittedly, but the test methods are out of date. So I give it little credence.

    The european ins industry has tested the Prius and it's right next ( alphabetically and quantitatively and size wise ) to the Passat. Want the link?
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    You have not accounted for the down grading of the Prius from 2005 to 2006. I find that interesting. What did Toyota cut out to cause that? I am very familiar with the EU tests. You also know that the vehicle sold in the EU is of a higher quality in several ways to the US version. It is also more expensive. So how can that be used as an example. The facts are you are 33% more apt to get a serious head injury in the 2006 Prius than the 2005.

    I did not bring up the IIHS ratings for the Prius.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    Where did you get these impressions from?

    I guess I did not answer your question. I got that straight from the manager of El Cajon Toyota. When the first Prius arrived I went down for two test drives. In the course of asking questions about safety. The Sales manager told me that Toyota had been given a by on testing as the Prius was built on the already tested Echo platform.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    And you believe everything you hear from a salesperson? Not a good idea, IMO.

    The Prius is not built on the same platform as the Echo. They share a common rear suspension design (beam vs. independent) but that is about all. Anyway, even if the two cars did share a platform, it would not cause the NHTSA or IIHS to give the Prius a "bye" since the cars have much different sheet metal and differ in many other ways including engine, weight, and length. As an counterexample, both the Hyundai Elantra and Kia Spectra have been tested by both the IIHS and NHTSA even though both are based on the same platform.
  • stevedebistevedebi LAPosts: 4,098
    "The Prius is not built on the same platform as the Echo."

    Actually, I think the Echo was based on the Prius platform. The Prius was developed first.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    The 2004 Prius first shipped in fall 2003. The 2000 ECHO first shipped in fall 1999. Are you saying that the original Prius, the ECHO, and the 2004+ Prius all use the same platform? Do you have any substantiation for that? I just find it hard to believe given the differences in the cars.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    The 2004 Prius is completely different. I believe the 1997-2003 Prius was the same platform as the Echo. I have to believe the Toyota sales manager until I see some proof to the contrary. The only significance to the CR report is resale value of the older technology. I believe the hybrids will age faster than the ICE only vehicles. When they lose the glamour they lose their resale value.
  • varmintvarmint Posts: 6,326
    Whether the original Prius was based on the Echo platform or not, you cannot assume it would have achieved similar crash results. There are significant differences in the engine compartment and passenger compartment. Structure is only half the battle. Passenger restraints and things like the distance from roof or pillar to the occupant's head are equally important. And based on my recollections, the Prius and Echo were not that similar inside.

    Right now, Hybrids are selling based on their high-tech image. Because the technology is changing so rapidly, I expect early models will not have particularly good resale value. Who want to buy last year's cell phone or last year's iPod? I don't think that factor will have a huge impact on resale, but it will have an impact.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The bigger consideration is the supply and that the Prius is Toyota ( Civic a Honda ). Both of these factors favor the hybrids holding value.

    2001 Gen1 Prius ( really basic ) with 75K mi rough book is about $8000; this is the 'old tech' version.

    2001 Camry LE ( basic ) with the same miles, rough book is about $6700
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 13,454
    if I may ask what was the original selling prices for those two cars?

    2008 Sebring Ragtop, 2011 Hyundai Sonata.

  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Gen1 Prius ( pretty basic ) CD + cruise was $21500
    2001 Camry LE ( last yr of Gen4 ) CD + cruise + pwr seat was ~$19500 typically, if memory serves me well.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    Both cars cost around $20K new.

    Looking forward, I'd anticipate hybrid depreciation to be slightly more than conventional, both because the technology is going to be changing somewhat more rapidly (the two-year old IPod factor mentioned), and because of the battery replacement cost. But I doubt it will be dramatic. People cherry-pick data to make a point, but generally, in a given vehicle class, depreciation rates are remarkably similar across many different models.

    I view CR's accelerated hybrid depreciation to be a little too aggressive, but who knows. OTOH, I think their prediction of gas prices nearly doubling in five years to be too high and this cuts back the other way. Probably a wash.

    You don't want to put too fine a point on these analyses, as you pay too much attention to the trees rather than the forest. The general (corrected) CR conclusion is probably the best overall guideline: the most cost-effective hybrids today (e.g., the Civic and Prius) are probably close to economic break-even, the worst (the big SUVs) are going to run you a grand or so per year extra.

    And there are other confounding factors that change each individual's economics. Are you going to finance the extra hybrid cost or just use cash? (This changes who much bite the initial hybrid cost hits you with.) And does your tax situation allow you to take full advantage of the tax credits? And what about state tax credits?

    I don't see a safety angle to hybrids, either way. I've never seen any data that indicates hybrids are either more or less safe as a class of cars, and for models in which there is both a hybrid and non-hybrid version, I've never seen any data showing either model is safer than the other.

    - Mark
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 13,454
    So the Prius is at 37% of the price while the Camry is at 34%.

    Now the question is are these selling prices or sticker prices? IIRC the prius was selling at sticker plus while the camry has always been selling for less than sticker.

    2008 Sebring Ragtop, 2011 Hyundai Sonata.

  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 13,454
    The general (corrected) CR conclusion is probably the best overall guideline: the most cost-effective hybrids today (e.g., the Civic and Prius) are probably close to economic break-even, the worst (the big SUVs) are going to run you a grand or so per year extra.

    I ran a slightly different analysis of CR data. I used their data to calculate the Internal Rate of Return (IRR) for the cars they looked at. Presuming maintanince and repair and insurance costs are spread out equally over the 5 years and that $5K is put down and the car is financed at 6% for 60 months. I calculated that most of the hybrids will return a greater percentage of the money invested, but just barely.

    That does not mean that the Hybrid was cheaper, most cases you spent more on the hybrid.

    2008 Sebring Ragtop, 2011 Hyundai Sonata.

  • library1library1 Posts: 54
    The table inside summarizes the recent insurance injury, collision, and theft losses....Results are based on the loss experience of 2002-04 models from their first sales
    through May 2005. For vehicles that were newly introduced or redesigned during these years, the results shown in this publication are based only on the most recent model years for which the vehicle designs were unchanged — either 2003-04 or 2004 only.

    1. This is for the Prius 2004 MY. The first gen Prius was almost as good. You may be able to find the earlier table at the IIHS website.

    2. This is not a test. These are the actual medical costs of injuries for people who's Prius was in a crash.

    3. Its a good idea to have an authoritative source for any discussion.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Sticker/selling price on the Prius Gen1
    Typical Transaction price on the Camry LE. ( sticker was in the $21000 range )

    The price variation on the Camry was much greater since the volume was 40-50 times greater overall.

    What's remarkable to me is that this very basic odd looking vehicle still brings $8000 in tradein/auction. However as I said previously it benefits from being in the Toyota family and the supply being traded in is pretty thin ( there weren't that many sold until 2004 model plus those that have them tend to be keepers ).

    Flip side of that coin with the Camry selling about 400K units annually it equally surprising that it's tradein values continue to be maintained well. My '97 with 185K on it traded for $2300. The transaction curve on tradeins is sharply decending and flattens out after 5 yrs.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Interesting side notes from this data:

    Prius driver, trying to conserve fuel are more careful;
    They drive at more moderate speeds;
    Is the subject data the reason two insurance companies are offering discounts for hybrid drivers?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Good point. I always wondered why the insurance rates for my $27,000 minivan were lower than those for my $12,000 compact sedan. They were about equal in crash safety ratings. I figured it must be based at least partly on driving behavior.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 31,112
    More interesting side notes on insurance.

    I think what you are saying about hybrid drivers being more conservative could be valid. I doubt that the IIHS has enough data to draw that conclusion. I do know when I told Farmers My GMC was a hybrid they researched and dropped the premium by $245 every 6 months. That means my Passat is $450 more per year than my PU truck.

    A question on the IIHS charts. How can it be that the Honda Civic gets a below average 147 injury score and the identical Civic hybrid an 89? It tells me they have very little data on the hybrids at this time. I would assume because the theft factor is blank on the Prius none have been stolen. I like the fact that my Sierra Hybrid scored a 41 making it safer than any car on the road.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Maybe that is because your Sierra Hybrid is BIGGER than any car on the road?
This discussion has been closed.