Hybrids - Long On Mileage, Short On Soul

hpmctorquehpmctorque Member Posts: 4,600
While I want to keep an open mind about the future, judging from current offerings hybridization has contributed to making cars more appliance-like, with a corresponding reduction in the "soul" factor. Why? the increase in weight and complexity associated with hybrids, coupled with new or, sometimes, nonexisting sounds, detract from the attributes that I value when I think of driving fun.

In fairness, I must disclose that I've never driven or even ridden in a hybrid vehicle, so my perception has been shaped entirely by what I've read and heard, and somewhat by the (non- automotive enthusiast) people whom I know who have bought them. I'm somewhat conflicted on the hybrid issue, however, by the fact that hybrids reduce our reliance on foreign sources of energy. In the large scheme of things, that's very desirable, but it also falls outside the scope of this topic, so I'm mentioning it as an aside.

Do you agree or disagree that, until now, at least, hybridization is not consistent with driving fun?


  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,350
    Do you agree or disagree that, until now, at least, hybridization is not consistent with driving fun?

    I'd have to agree given the state of the art. Things may be changing as makers look to hybridization as a means of delivering more power without increasing fuel consumption as is done with the Accord Hybrid and the Lexus RX-400H.

    A recent article in the NY Times noted that Green activists are complaining about car companies proceeding in this direction.

    I myself look forward to the car that fulfills the promise of the Honda/Acura DualNote concept car shown at auto shows in 2001-02 with a potential of 400hp @ 40mpg. Now that I could get excited about. ;)

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • carlisimocarlisimo Member Posts: 1,280
    I think our perceptions are colored because when we think of hybrids, we think of Toyotas. The Prius in particular.

    I've heard good things about the Insight. The Civic is available with a manual transmission. The Accord might be, and I haven't heard that it's less fun than a V6 Accord (which is 'fun', for that kind of car).

    Fundamentally, there are two reasons for hybrids not being much fun. The lesser one is electric steering, which as far as I know, is necessary for some technical reason. They're getting better, but the first electric steering systems have been quite numb.

    The second is that the people who want hybrids tend not to be into driving. For a lot of people I know, having a hybrid would be the only way for them to justify (to themselves) owning a car at all. Mileage-based hybrids have to be marketed to slow drivers anyway.

    Hybrids can have soul just like a reliable midsized family sedan can have soul. It just isn't what (most) buyers want.
  • nippononlynippononly Member Posts: 12,555
    just a point of clarification: the last Civic hybrid offered a manual, the new one does not. In general, I would expect to see all hybrids that follow the Toyota school of thought adopting CVTs (or CVT-like devices) for power transmission, and calling it a day. That type of transmission is best for fuel economy in these types of vehicles.

    Hybrids built to save gas will always go that extra mile by using smaller-than-average tires with low rolling resistance, which always decreases the fun factor.

    All cars will have electric steering pretty soon except the sporty models (and even some of those), so in a sense the whole market is gradually moving away from fun, except in the exotics.

    In hybrids, even the high-powered models are just that: high-powered. They are for the most part not engaging or sporty in other ways (I am thinking especially of the Accord hybrid and HL hybrids here), they just happen to be fast if you floor it off the line.

    Besides, to enthusiasts, how could anything so technically complex ever have "soul"? The soul of the most fun cars on the market is embodied in the amount of raw driving experience that remains for the seat of the pants. Lexus has never understood that so they have never been able to produce a visceral sporty car, and BMW and Mercedes ought to take note here, as they seem to be forgetting that truism bit by bit with every new generation of their cars.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • carlisimocarlisimo Member Posts: 1,280
    Thanks for the Civic clarification.

    I didn't find a whole bunch of 'soul' in my friend's e46 328i, so maybe I'm not an authority on it. But I don't think a hybrid drivetrain is too complex to be soulful. Turbos have similar complexities and quirks, but some of the cars they come in are said to have soul. The Evo and STi have a lot of complexity in their AWD systems... I don't think that detracts from the experience.

    I won't say the Civic and Accord hybrids are all that much fun, but are they less fun and soulful than normal Civics and Accords with equivalent transmissions? Are engineers even trying to make cars fun to drive, or are they just giving people what they want?
  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    Hybrids have introduced and entirely new kind of "driving fun."

    The fun of trying to maximize the miles per gallon your car can achieve.

    The fun of knowing that changing your driving style to a slower style is helping reduce your driving stress.

    The fun of knowing that you are polluting far far less than virtually any other car on the road.

    The fun of knowing that your fuel bill for 700 miles of driving will be less than $30.

    The fun of knowing that your chances of ever getting a speeding ticket have been reduced by about 90%.

    The fun of knowing that this awesome hybrid technology will be showing up in more and more cars as time goes by.

    So there is far more "fun" things about driving than the "traditional" view of speed speed speed.
  • nippononlynippononly Member Posts: 12,555
    also suffer a loss of soul because they are so intensively computerized - they are not cars, they are transportation appliances run by computer chips. Again, they are not unique in this situation, as all cars are being more and more run by the computer than by the driver.

    Maybe we should change the title here to "Modern Cars: Long on computers, short on soul".

    Certainly hybrids have a better computer-driver interface than most cars, as hybrid drivers use their LCD screens to interact with the computer to maximize gas mileage.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • kernickkernick Member Posts: 4,072
    Those things you mention rank right up there on the "fun factor" list with: 1) doing your laundry in a stream to save electric, 2) taking a date to the local crafts-store, and 3) switching TV channels to PBS just to watch their 10-min. membership-drive sessions. :D You can call them fun, just as you call Alan Greenspan "handsome" - it's all subjective.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I don't think hybrids are built for people who like cars; they are built for people who like gadgets. Different market.
  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    HHHMmmmmmmmmmmm....I'm gonna need to ponder that.....
    (ponder mode activated)
    (pondering engaged)

    Well, after pondering, I think there are many many "vehicles" which are not built for "people who like cars" but are built to provide a function.

    Minivans? 15-passenger vans? Huge SUVs? Two-passenger coupes?

    All those are examples of vehicles built with a particular "job to perform" and they do that job, usually pretty well.

    Hybrids (at least the high MPG ones) are built for that also. To provide a clean emission, high MPG vehicle to someone who wants or needs such a function provided to them.

    I feel the cars are more than "mere gadgets." Individuals may love any car they buy, merely because it's their car. Car's don't have to be "universally loved" to be successful.
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    No one ever claimed that hybrids don't fulfill their function. Just that they are 'short on soul'.

    Of course, rather than just diving right into whether or not hybrids are 'short on soul', perhaps we should try to identify just what consitutes 'soul' in a car and THEN decide if hybrids are short on this or not.

    Personally, I think that any car which incites passion in their owner to just DRIVE just for the heck of it (no particular destination, no particular timetable, no particular REASON, just a need to go out and DRIVE) could be said to have 'soul'.

    So, given that criteria, would a car which is centered around efficiency and saving gas ever incite it's owner to just drive around aimlessly and......waste gas? Seems like an oxymoron to me.
  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    Not in my case, but I may not be the typical Hybrid owner....

    I sometimes volunteer to drive my car, if I know the route is conducive to increasing my MPG for a tank.

    "Driving to increase your MPG" is one "fun" reason for driving a hybrid.
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    I can accept that.

    The question that comes to mind however is how much of that 'soul' is due to your passion for the concept of hybrids in general and how much of that is due to the car itself?

    One could ask if a more average driver would feel the same way about your hybrid? Of course, the question could also be asked if you (larsb) were put being the wheel of a more 'soulful' car, if you would have the same passion?

    Personally, I think that the 'spark' only occurs when the individual is matched to the right car. For larsb, that may only occur behind the wheel of a hybrid. For most others, that may only happen behind the wheel of a car with a bit more spunk. One could say that a car with 'soul' is one which encourages more driver involvement. I think we are conditioned to say this means high performance. But I know that for individuals centered around maximizing economy, a hybrid DOES encourage lots of driver involvement.

    Most drivers concentrate on driving a good line, or working on their shifting/trail braking or whatever; and cars which encourage this type of driving are said to be 'soulful'. But, if the driver is concentrating on a DIFFERENT aspect of performance (fuel economy), perhaps a vehicle which encourages THIS type of driving could also be said to be 'soulful'.
  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    I think the younger a person is, and the newer they are to driving, and the FEWER MILES they have driven, the more they might care about the "soul" of a car.

    I had several cars in my younger years which had a lot of "soul" from my perspective. A 1980 Nissan 200SX from which I received 323,000 miles - I loved that car because it had a sunroof and a good stereo and I owned it when I was 20-27 years old and it virtually never broke down.

    I had a black 1992 Infiniti Q45 which was a great car for acceleration and feeling your body get pushed back into the seat by the huge 278 HP V8.

    Now, at age 42, I get my kicks from things other than loud stereos, sunroofs, and fast driving. Like 56.0 MPG tanks, or going 31 days between fillups.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I rarely find myself going WAA--HOO! in a hybrid. I always associated the term "soul" with a kind of excitement level or emotion.

    Sure hybrids fulfill many functions and serve people well, and it is certainly true that there are other cars built for people who hate cars...Volvo lived off that for many years until they got faster and prettier.

    To be fair to hybrids, it's getting increasingly difficult to find character and eccentricity in ANY mass produced modern car except for a handful of them.
  • carlisimocarlisimo Member Posts: 1,280
    My generalization of a hybrid is like being at the helm of the USS Enterprise. And if you told Scotty that she had no soul, he'd throw you out the airlock =p.

    "Driving" enthusiasts aren't the only ones who enjoy cars, and we're not the only ones who pretend cars have souls. My friend says her Corolla has personality... I don't get it, just like I don't get what she sees in her last boyfriend, but she does see something. (On the other hand, my Tercel had soul, but I was driving it in a WAA-HOO! sorta way, and it gave a lot of feedback.)

    To find out whether or not a hybrid can have soul... well it's a silly question to begin with. But if it weren't a silly question, we'd still suffer from a shortage of samples.

    Ze Germans vill soon provide mör specimens.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Member Posts: 19,141
    i agree with most of your post. hybrids are not really about 'fun to drive'. my sister has a priius. it is not 'fun to drive'. i could enjoy the challenge of getting the best possible mileage i could from it, but i can do that with any vehicle. it is pretty practical, though.
    character and eccentric do not necessarily equate to good.
    my wife had a saab. one time one of the kids reached over and turned the car off while she was on the highway. they have the ignition key between the front seats. i'm sure you know that.
    2023 Ford Explorer ST, 91 Mustang GT vert
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I don't think all knowledge is so utterly relative. If a person thinks that Grover Cleveland Junior High has a football team as good as the Indiapolis Colts, you would not hesitate to call them charming, perhaps hopeful, nay, even dreamily naive--- but delusional nonetheless.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Member Posts: 5,525
    “Soul”... always has been an amusing word to me when it comes to cars (and trucks). What is it about?

    Could a minivan have a soul? A truck? Or, is it that a car only has a soul if it is sporty enough? And even in that case, do we have "categorization of soul"... like less soul, more soul... ?
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Member Posts: 4,600
    Great question, to which there's no generally accepted definition, as the messages so far suggest. I've seen the term used on various occasions, and it resonates with me, but I've never seen it defined in an automotive sense.

    In message #11 above, rorr writes, "...I think that any car which incites passion in their owner to just DRIVE just for the heck of it (no particular destination, no particular timetable, no particular REASON, just a need to go out and DRIVE) could be said to have 'soul'...." That works for me, even though my choice of words might differ somewhat, to include "character, responsive, nimble, steering feel, and some styling uniqueness." I value a class leading blend of balanced performance, combined with reasonable cost-of-ownership, over blazing zero-sixty and remarkable slalom times. However, others will, without a doubt, define soul differently. A Mazda MX-5 or MINI would probably come closer to my definition than, say, a Viper (but not a Ferrari). It's an emotional thing, which, by definition, is hard to rationalize.
  • lemmerlemmer Member Posts: 2,689
    A lot of the time soul means that the car sucks.

    The only minivan that sucks enough to have soul is a Vanagon.

    A Saab 900 Turbo sucks enough to have soul.

    I think a lot of the time it means the car feels like it was designed and put together by people rather than computers and robots. The worse a vehicle sucks, the more evident the human influence.

    What creeps me out is when people say a car is sexy. I think they mean attractive, not sexually stimulating. I know attractive has become a secondary definition, but I refuse to use it discussing anything other than women.
  • kernickkernick Member Posts: 4,072
    you: In message #11 above, rorr writes, "...I think that any car which incites passion in their owner to just DRIVE just for the heck of it (no particular destination, no particular timetable, no particular REASON, just a need to go out and DRIVE) could be said to have 'soul'...."

    me: that works for me too! I would also consider a car with soul to be one that inspires you to go out and burnup a set of tires and/or brakes in a short period of time - Viper, Ferrari, Vette, and then also covering the Miata, Mini, and such.

    The purpose of a hybrid is to save fuel, and keep pollution to a minimum. Since saving fuel not only requires high mpg, but ALSO would require no unnecessary driving, this does not equate to going out and driving for no particular reason or without a destination.

    It's like the difference of walking back and forth to somewhere to do an errand, versus taking a run on the beach.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Member Posts: 5,525
    The purpose of a hybrid is to save fuel, and keep pollution to a minimum.

    Aah... that would be the soul of a hybrid car! And it can inspire people do utilize that, pretty much like one would do a burnout in a Viper (a Miata... huh!).

    Not all souls are equal. :P
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    So you mean that a hybrid would inspire you to park it? After all, that would be the highest goal...what better way to save the most amount of fuel?

    I'd agree with that! :P

    But all kidding aside, what you seem to be saying is that dancing passionately to loud music has the same amount of soul as declaring an intention to lose some weight this week.

    It hardly equates.

    My God, you can't even HEAR a hybrid working. You might as well be watching a TV screen.

    Proof that hybrids are soulless?

    Well for one thing, every Prius drives and feels identical to every other Prius. This is not true of some cars.

    Soul: individuality, accessible to the sense organs, thrilling (literally, in a body-reactive sense), unique, one of a kind, genetically connected to other souls, etc.
  • carlisimocarlisimo Member Posts: 1,280
    "Well for one thing, every Prius drives and feels identical to every other Prius. This is not true of some cars."

    Woah, that scares me about those cars you speak of.

    But um... try thinking of a hypothetical hybrid that uses an electric engine the way some cars use NOS. Any potential?
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Member Posts: 5,525
    You don't buy a car to put it on a shelf... okay, those nice looking exotics, may be.

    You get a car to use it. Now, not all cars have to have the same purpose (beyond going from point A to point B, ofcourse, which all cars are supposed to do).

    I'm talking about passion that defines a soul. Unfortunately, most people here seem to believe that unless it is a sports car, there can be no passion involved.
  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    quote rob-"....unless it is a sports car, there can be no passion involved."-end quote

    I can tell you and anyone else reading this that THAT statement is completely untrue.

    I am and other hybrid owners I know are COMPLETELY PASSIONATE about their cars and the MPG we try to milk from them.

    Now, the question remains - does a car which evokes passion automagically have "soul"?????
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    "Now, the question remains - does a car which evokes passion automagically have "soul"?????"

    Automagically? That's a good one.... :)
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Member Posts: 9,372
    That almost sounds like a feature on a car by Disney... an automagic tranny :P
  • lemmerlemmer Member Posts: 2,689
    I think I would not want to meet in a dark alley one who is passionate about a hybrid.

    It just seems so irrational, but I haven't tried it so who knows?
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    I think the reason why most of us have a problem equating 'hybrid' with 'soul' is because, to us, cars are about DRIVING and cars which encourage DRIVING for no other reason than to just be out on the road would be a car with 'soul'.

    But hybrids aren't about DRIVING, they are about conserving. Yes, one can be passionate about conserving and therefore, with a car which is built to conserve, one can be passionate about the car. But does this give the car 'soul'?

    Would a water heater/dishwasher/etc. with a really REALLY good EnergyStar rating be considered to have 'soul'? I suppose it is possible for an individual to have 'passion' regarding their efficient appliance, but I think most would agree that is insufficient to grant that appliance 'soul'.

    And like it or not, most view hybrids (when designed to simply convey people from point 'A' to point 'B' in an extremely efficient manner) as simply an automotive appliance......with a really REALLY good EnergyStar rating.
  • larsblarsb Member Posts: 8,204
    Many hybrid owners give names to their vehicles and talk to them, much as they would a pet, albeit with less feedback....:)
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    WHY am I not surprised..... :P
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Member Posts: 5,525
    "But hybrids aren't about DRIVING, they are about conserving."

    Bad assumption. A few years ago I contemplated on leasing Acura NSX. One of the major issues... 7500 mile/year limit on it. Well, I drive more than twice that in a year. I guess, I would be forced to driving less in a "driver's car"... eh?

    If you (and others) continue to insist that soul must require only driving and nothing else, well, I must say that the assumption is quite... closed minded.

    To me, its all in passion. How a vehicle goes about delivering its responsibility.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Hmmm...I think people are confusing the subject of the forum..we aren't talking about the person owning the car, we are talking about the car itself having soul. Human nature will often have a lot of emotion over things/people who are really quite vapid.

    A Ferrari or Corvette, howling down the road, smoking tires, with gorgeous styling, amazing performance and challenging dynamics for the driver, can never be equated with putting the little lever down in the Prius and going "click". The Ferrari or Corvette are not "concepts of your own mind"--you can SEE, hear feel smell, touch and experience the reality of the car's soul. If anything I found the Prius was the absence of sensation.

    Are pro football and ping pong the same? Hardly.

    Yeah, I know, someone will bring up the "passion" of golf, but I think "obsession" with golf is closer to it, as is obsession with gas mileage---it's a nerd thing---a Prius is a video game that you drive more or less.
  • rorrrorr Member Posts: 3,630
    "If you (and others) continue to insist that soul must require only driving and nothing else, well, I must say that the assumption is quite... closed minded."

    Yep. Pretty much. Just like I'm fairly close minded on what constitues a 'sportscar' (is it whatevertheheck the owner WANTS it to be? Or should there be SOME criteria?)

    If we assume the point of a vehicle (any vehicle) is to be driven....then the 'soul' of that vehicle is based on that aspect.

    If we assume that 'soul' of a vehicle is based merely on whether or not it's owner has a passion for it, then ANY car could be considered to have soul.

    "To me, its all in passion."

    But what drives (pardon the pun) the passion?

    If an individual is passionette about economy, then does EVERY car which is highly efficient qualify has having 'soul'? Or we confusing passion for the individual car with passion for the car's purpose?

    Just how many angels CAN dance on the head of a pin?
  • kernickkernick Member Posts: 4,072
    you: ...7500 mile/year limit on it. Well, I drive more than twice that in a year. I guess, I would be forced to driving less in a "driver's car"... eh?

    me: you can drive a leased car however much you want; the only limit is if you want to keep the low-rate. You simply pay extra for every mile after. If the lease didn't fit you, and you wanted it, you should have bought it and took a loan.

    you: If you (and others) continue to insist that soul must require only driving and nothing else, well, I must say that the assumption is quite... closed minded.

    me: you're welcome to your opinion; but based on that line of reasoning, any object can be an object of passion. I can paint a picture that I'm passionate about, but I doubt anyone here is going to feel that way about or give me $10. So yes you can argue that a hybrid can have sould because when it is stationary, you are passionate about the way it looks. BUT most people have a car to DRIVE it, not as a work of art.

    you: How a vehicle goes about delivering its responsibility.

    me: a car (or any non-human item) has responsibility? Where do these ideas come from - ancient Greek science books on the nature of matter?

    Look, the ultimate conservation of fuel and elimination of emissions is to never start a car - hybrid or non-hybrid. If conservation and ecology are your passion, then all you are left with as an ideal - is to look at the car parked. Thus your passion for the ideal car and hybrid, is as a non-running work of art.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    a non running car isn't really a car, it's an idea of a car at that point. It has become mythologized if you will.

    Some people might say Miles Davis' music had "soul". (or substitute your favorite big time musician)

    Well that requires a) the instrument and b) the man to play it.

    Miles being dead and his trumpet in a glass case in a museum rather makes the argument of "soul" a mute point. It's over.

    So man + instrument = soul

    No, Wait!

    CERTAIN man(woman) + CERTAIN instrument = soul

    Miles on accordian? ---- NAH

    Me on trumpet? ----- NAH

    Carroll Shelby in a Prius? ---- NAH

    Carroll Shelby in a GT350 --- there you go!!
  • carlisimocarlisimo Member Posts: 1,280
    I thought soul was something that lasted beyond the death of body.

    Yeah... I like where this conversation has gone =].

    But seriously... you're letting the Prius define hybrid cars for you. It'd be like saying family cars have no soul because the Camry doesn't. You could make other arguments against family cars having soul. Their purpose is safety and practicality; they're not meant to be driven vigorously; nothing in their design has performance as a priority.

    And yet some family sedans and wagons have managed it. Even the Citroen Berlingo is widely acknowledged to have soul (albeit work mule, not stallion). One day, a hybrid could too.
  • lemmerlemmer Member Posts: 2,689
    I think "obsession" with golf is closer to it, as is obsession with gas mileage---it's a nerd thing

    I thought I was the only one who thought that. Being a professional in the South who doesn't play golf puts me at a disadvantage. I am one of the few who don't hunt or fish either.

    I equate golf to business suits - they both work best for fat, rich, white guys who are trying to compensate for their lack of appealing physical attributes.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Hahaha...what I meant was that golf is a "mental game", and as such I am not apt to consider it passionate...it's more like chess and it is like boxing.

    No, I think a car's soul is strictly earthly in nature. It dies with the car I'm afraid.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    An apt opinion from autoextremist.com:

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I think his world packed up and left while he was sleeping however....
  • boaz47boaz47 Member Posts: 2,747
    hybrids seem like a step back from a enthusiasts point of view. Remember when they first came out with smog control? Remember the cars from the late 70s and 80s. Any kid with a 60s pony or mussel cars looked down on your poor underpowered what ever you had. But you did get better fuel mileage and were supposed to produce less pollution. But the cars were less on the enjoyment scale than the ones we already had. Hybrids that we now have are much like those days. We can hope for better but who knows how long it will take?
  • mistermemisterme Member Posts: 407
    "Hybrids that we now have are much like those days"

    I remember when the first ESC's came into the market and people were afraid to get away from mechanical points.

    Then they were installed on every car.
    About the same time ECM's showed up and FI.
    Today we no longer see the "Fuel Injected" rear or side markings.
    Alot of people were apprehensive about computer controlled cars and the "dark cloud" of mystery about them.

    A computer couldn't set the timing as well as I could with my light anyway...right??

    Some of my first cars were a '69 Ply FuryII with a 318, a magnificent runner.
    Later I owned two Pintos and a Vega.

    My Pinto 4spd did fairly, my Pinto AT was terrible and the Vega's acceleration rate was purely psychological.

    boaz47, the hybrids of today can't be compared to what I've just described.

    I think if you took an owner satisfaction survey at the time with Pintos and Vegas along with several other cars of their class you'd find a very, very low satisfaction rate.
    (Although higher with some [non-permissible content removed] models)

    Compare that to hybrid owners of today in which the vast majority love them and are very satisfied...

    Have you ever wondered why that is, and why most non-hybrid owners "Just don't get it?"
  • boaz47boaz47 Member Posts: 2,747
    Well in truth I have noticed that. But I have also noticed that I was talking form a performance perspective. Today's hybrid owners are a cause all unto themselves. They will defend the performance of their vehicles even if they happen to be the slowest cars in the fleet of the company making them. The first generation Prius is a prime example. Are they satisfied with their cars? I bet they are because they are making a statement as much as they are driving a car they like.

    However many non hybrid owners are car enthusiasts and what we do get is that Honda came to the car shows with a hybrid that produced close to 400 HP and looked cool but that wasn't what hit the street. We got the Insight and while it got great fuel mileage, and it's owners loved it, the car sure couldn't keep up with what we were already getting from Honda in a Civic SI or Accord.

    I haven't been trying to say hybrids are a step back in technology, even if to a degree they are. They are a result of 30 years of technology that promised us pure green cars. Hybrids are a compromise with a promise given 30 years ago. What I am saying is that hybrids are a step back in performance and driving enthusiasm. want to impress me with a hybrid? Get me through the 1/4 mile in under 15 seconds stock. Allow me to corner at .8 Gs. Do that and give me 40 MPG. Then they would be a step forward in "all" areas. :D A bit tongue in cheek here, but they could cure freeway chase screens on TV by forcing the Highway patrol into a fleet of Priusi. They couldn't catch anyone. But I am sure Prius owners would be satisfied with their cars, and their pocket protectors. ;)
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Member Posts: 5,525
    many non hybrid owners are car enthusiasts
    Car enthusiasts don't have to have the most powerful and fastest cars in the block. Enthusiasm for cars can come in a variety of ways. I consider myself a car enthusiast, but would never rule out as something that doesn't belong in my book. Why should I?
  • boaz47boaz47 Member Posts: 2,747
    Is there a current hybrid on your dream list of cars you are enthusiastic about? When you compare specifications on several cars is fuel mileage your first concern above any other performance factor? If you answered yes to that the next question would be, do you have a hybrid?
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Member Posts: 5,525
    Your questions have nothing to do with the point I made. In my book car enthusiasts love cars... a variety of them, even though they may or may not own them. These are "car people" I'm talking about. These are like environmentalists who respect all trees as equal but don't necessarily have all of them planted in their backyard.

    I will answer your questions though... you ask is fuel mileage my first concern over any other performance factor? Honestly, I don't buy a car for one thing. I buy a package. If it helps answer your question, I picked Accord I-4 over Accord V6. Could have gone for LXV6 which was $800 cheaper than the EX-L I got... didn't. Would you like to guess why?

    I would consider a hybrid, but at this time, I fancy TSX but this does not mean I don't have respect for hybrid technology. Besides, it will be wonderful if Acura launched a TSX Hybrid. I've talked about it, since 2002 Acura RDX prototype was displayed (basically using TSX's engine, coupled to in-wheel electric motors for an AWD setup with 250 HP).
  • boaz47boaz47 Member Posts: 2,747
    Thank you. The last part of that post answered my question and was my point. And I like the idea as much as you. Not what we got however.
  • robertsmxrobertsmx Member Posts: 5,525
    I don't mind what we have got today. They have their own appeal. Pickups have never been my thing, and I do just fine without one... they are something I would rent once in a while on need basis than own. But, I couldn't use my needs to judge their existence, or even appreciate their qualities.

    BTW, there is a potential hybrid (Honda Fit) that has made me consider as a replacement to my 2000 Civic (second car)... if it happens next year, and delivers, it might just make it to my garage.
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