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Buying a Hybrid

Old 08-09-2011, 04:19 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: In the process of moving to the D.C. area.
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Default Buying a Hybrid

I write a finance blog called FinancialRx and just posted an article that might be helpful called "Buying a Hybrid."

In the article, I discuss in very simple terms how to do the math on the "Break even point" on a hybrid purchase. Then I walk through a very basic example so you can see the math for yourself.

Anyway, here's the regular link in case the links above do not work:


Hope that's helpful -- good luck to all the hybrid shoppers out there! We have a Toyota Highlander Hybrid and though the mileage is not fantastic, it's much better than it would be for such a large SUV if it had a conventional engine.
Old 08-12-2011, 01:23 PM
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Default Re: Buying a Hybrid

I think that's a fair write up for your own experience in your particular model vehicle.

One major flaw is your article seems to blanket all hybrid vehicles.

1. Different models will have vastly different efficiency. A good example on the opposite ends of the equasion would be a GM SUV hybrid vs. a 2003 Honda Insight which users here average almost 65MPG but is capable of over 100MPG.
2. Different driving conditions make a big difference in efficiency. Hilly vs flat terrain, short or long commutes, whether most driving is freeway or residential etc.
3. Good or poor driving habits.

My previous car was a '94 Dodge Spirit 4cyl which I always floored the gas and got about 16mpg. I bought my hybrid without intention of hypermiling. But once I got hooked on it, my break even point was less than a year. That's when gas averaged $2.30/g.

I think the multitude of variables should be mentioned but are not.

Last edited by Hot_Georgia_2004; 08-12-2011 at 01:25 PM.
Old 09-29-2011, 09:39 PM
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 17
Default Re: Buying a Hybrid

I would like to appreciate your efforts to write this post and this is the great idea to present maths about to buying a hybrid. of course fuel efficiency not a small matter. So everybody needs to understand this math before buying a hybrid.
Old 01-21-2012, 08:08 PM
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Default Re: Buying a Hybrid

We had a Lexus GX470 and averaged 18.5MPG. The PRIMARY reason we bought the HiHy was because we were mislead by the 31MPG "claims" on the window sticker of our '06 HiHy. That was what we "did the math on" BEFORE we bought it back in August of 2006. The analysis was similar to your write up.

Of course, the mileage is nowhere NEAR the claims. We have averaged 25.5MPG so we save an extra $840/year in fuel economy or about $4,500 in savings so far. IMHO, it's not "worth it". The HiHy is noisier, rides rougher, doesn't have memory ANYTHING (not seats, not mirrors, not ANYTHING). The wife likes not having to put $80 into every tankful so perhaps there are some points there but the cost savings simply aren't REALLY there. This particular HiHy is the limited version with NAVI and leather and rear seat DVD and etc.. so it's a LOT nicer than other Highlanders but it's still not a Lexus.
Old 02-06-2012, 05:56 PM
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Newcastle; Australia
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Default Re: Buying a Hybrid

This is the second Civic Hybrid I've owned. The first was an 04 and I would regularly get the advertised 5.2L/100Km (45MPG). I had over 100000 miles on the clock when I sold it to buy an 07 model. It had cruise control VSA and a few things the 04 missed out on. I found the 07 far more thirsty than the 04. The same drive in the 07 was always over 6.0L/100Km (39MPG). I believe it's because Honda used the same drive train (04 model) into a heavier vehicle (07 model). The 07 feels has always felt less dynamic than the 04.
Just had my 90,000 service done and it is now using 8.1 L/100Km (29 MPG).

Last edited by cosmo-luce; 12-05-2012 at 06:09 PM.
Old 06-19-2012, 07:00 AM
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 36
Default Re: Buying a Hybrid

In my point of view it's most ideal decision and I really appreciate this because now a days hybrids improve fuel economy it is the most advantage of this. When you plan to buy your first hybrid than Toyota prius is the best option now a days.
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