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THE Hybrid Transportation Thread pt 2(merged)

How to save energy through both societal and individual actions.

Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby MonteQuest » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 16:17:21

diemos wrote:Huh?

If fewer units are being sold despite screaming demand then there must be a bottleneck in production or supply is being diverted to other markets.

Anyone know the real story?


Well, I'd hazard a guess that it is also a reflection of no more refi-ATM money and a realization that, economically, buying a hybrid doesn't make sense. Especially when you are already upside down on your trade-in or the dealer won't give you much on the deal.

Not to mention tha fact that hybrids are more expensive anyway and are selling above sticker price.

People are better off keeping the SUV and paying the price at the pump.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby diemos » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 16:32:13

MonteQuest wrote:
diemos wrote:Huh?

If fewer units are being sold despite screaming demand then there must be a bottleneck in production or supply is being diverted to other markets.

Anyone know the real story?


Well, I'd hazard a guess that it is also a reflection of no more refi-ATM money and a realization that, economically, buying a hybrid doesn't make sense. Especially when you are already upside down on your trade-in or the dealer won't give you much on the deal.

Not to mention tha fact that hybrids are more expensive anyway and are selling above sticker price.

People are better off keeping the SUV and paying the price at the pump.


The statement was that there are long waiting lists for these cars at current prices. Are you asserting that that is incorrect and that there is supply without demand for prii?
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby cube » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 16:59:58

MonteQuest wrote:...
Well, I'd hazard a guess that it is also a reflection of no more refi-ATM money and a realization that, economically, buying a hybrid doesn't make sense. Especially when you are already upside down on your trade-in or the dealer won't give you much on the deal.
...
I used to be a fan of hybrids when they first came out, however upon closer inspection I have changed my mind. I just don't see people being able to afford a $25K car in a PO world. I think we're going to see society downgrading to a $10K car eventually because that's the only thing Joe Sixpack will be able to afford. Those $25K hybrids of today will die-off and become a relic of the past much like SUV's.

my 2 cents...
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby MonteQuest » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 17:14:40

diemos wrote: The statement was that there are long waiting lists for these cars at current prices. Are you asserting that that is incorrect and that there is supply without demand for prii?


No, but the market forecasters surely have done surveys to determine what the future market will be. And all of the things I listed sure are going to affect hybrid sales downward.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby dinopello » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 17:15:56

We just had a new taxi company start up that uses only hybrid Prius's. They started out with 50 cabs but are already saying they will add more

EnviroCab

This has spurred the established taxi companies to start purchasing hybrids. If that is occurring elsewhere it is no wonder that single car purchasers take a back seat.

More Hybrids
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby charliehelyes » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 17:43:49

bruce forsyth paradox will erase gains
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby heroineworshipper » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 18:43:33

Canadia's cutting nickel output, the bastards. They need a good talking to. Need to get those Canadians to do our bidding or else.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby joe1347 » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 18:57:35

Several months ago, dealers had 'lots' of new Priuses on the lot and were selling them for a few hundred below invoice. Of course with gas prices spiking and after the span of only a few months, todays price for the same new 2008 Prius is now almost $4000 higher combined with a several month wait (i.e, NO new Priuses on dealer lots). This is a guess, but Toyota dealers now simply have run out of Priuses to sell since they are effectively sold out of 2008's until the Fall when the 2009's (still gen II) start shipping. Of course, Toyota is nobodys fool and is increasing production 60%? next year on the next gen Prius (gen III) which is scheduled to be shown at the Jan 09 Detroit auto show and start shipping next summer.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby kokoda » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 20:29:09

It takes an enormous amount of time to scale up production. You don't just go from woe to go in a month or two.

Here in Australia we are going to start building hybrids in response to soaring fuel costs. The first vehicles will roll off the assembly line in 2010.

Even then there will be only 10,000 of them.

If people think they are going to trade their current gas guzzler on a car that guzzles slightly less gas in the next couple of months are in for a rude shock.

Another rude shock they are in for is when they find that Hybrids prices will soar while at the same time the trade in value of their old gas guzzlers will plummet. I mean who is going to be stupid enough to want to buy a second hand Hummer?
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby 3aidlillahi » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 20:42:11

What's all of this talk about the expensiveness and the delaying in obtaining of a hybrid? I was able to find one very cheap from a local guy.

Image

Gotta love those fuel-efficient hybrids.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby joelcolorado » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 20:59:11

Plus buying $7,000 in batteries at 100,000 miles adds to the cost. I was going to get one last year and then factored in all the costs and it wont pay even at $6 gas.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby MyOldTDiIsStillGoing » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 21:04:19

Working in the auto industry for 20 years +, the challenge is to forecast a model build and the ever changing purchasing environment. Most assembly lines are set up for a min and a max and it is hard to run above or below that. To speed a line up from say 45 vehicles per hour to say 50 is a challenge since the supply line has to be ramped up and added labor force to build them. Part shortages happen, quality drops, and labor has to work overtime to keep up if the line speed stays the same but added hours to get more out. Working in a plant that pumped 540K vehicles per year on 3 lines, we saw that adjusting the production volumes to meet the demands a never ending battle

My neighbor ships out Hondas on the rail and they are pumping as many as possible. Ford is working their plants on O/T for the Focus vehicle and experiencing the same production challenge. Honda's assembly line has their cars only one foot apart to squeeze more cars on the line. Again, quality suffers as things get rushed. The systems can handle only so much.

As for the hybrids, is the payback worth the mark up? Do the math and stick with something that has a better return. Besides, when the batteries need replacing, watch the wallet, it will be a big one.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby pasttense » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 21:53:00

Lots of people will buy a used gas guzzler (including a Hummer) if
the price is right--and it doesn't mean they are stupid either.

The traditional way to buy a car is to buy a car that is large enough
for 100% of your trips.

With high gas prices an alternative can be more economic: you
1. buy a tiny car adequate for 90% of your trips (just you commuting
to work for example, or you and one other person, or you and a
few sacks of groceries...)
2. buy a large used gas guzzler for the other 10% of trips where
you need more capacity.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby mobil1 » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 22:27:17

joelcolorado wrote:Plus buying $7,000 in batteries at 100,000 miles adds to the cost. I was going to get one last year and then factored in all the costs and it wont pay even at $6 gas.


That's a myth. Prius batteries are currently in $3000 range and there are virtually NO (I think one or two) cases where main NiMH battery pack had to be replaced. Toyota offers 10+ year warranty in some states so engineered the battery to only go from about 40% full to 80% full. That's why their batteries last so much longer than consumer NiMH batteries.


I bought a 2008 Prius 1 month ago and am very happy with it. I replaced a 94 Jap sports car that got about 18 MPG with a car that I've squeezed as much as 60 MPG out of.

might save $600 per year in fuel versus a Honda Civic or Corolla or similar. Canadian rebates of $4k helped make my decision though.

Prius can be converted into a plug-in electric also. I will make this upgrade if and when it makes financial sense. Currently, electricity is cheaper than gas, but regular battery replacements every 2-5 years cost too much with current battery tech.


Toyota's main problem with ramping up Prius production now is supply of batteries. They are working to resolve the problem. Currently may people in US have to wait months and pay thousands over MSRP for a Prius. Easier to get here in Canada (23 days for me), but MSRP is hgher here, but we get $4k gov't rebate; going down to $2k for 2009 model year.

Prius is highest gas mileage 4 wheel vehicle available in Canada or US now (have to get a very small motorbike to beat MPG). It also has highest satisfaction rating and gets top marks from Consumer Reports.

If there are gas shortages or very high prices, IMO, the Prius will keep me and my family mobile in this semi-rural area where we have to go 5 miles for milk, bread, cigs, gas etc.

If there is absolutely no gas left, I'll be able to run the Prius at least 1-2 miles with the stock battery in EV mode, and with battery addons, I could go 40+ miles. Assuming I have someway to get electricity like solar, wind, James Bay hydro at 8 cents per KWH etc.


The kicker for me is I can also use the Prius as a generator. You can get 1000 watts continuous from 12v system, or 3-5+ KW continuous from the 200vdc HV battery. The engine will start and stop as needed to charge the batteries, and is quiet and very fuel efficient for a generator. All assuming you can get gasoline, but alcohol conversion is a possibility, or a retrofit of some other electric generating engine.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby mos6507 » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 22:34:03

3aidlillahi wrote:What's all of this talk about the expensiveness and the delaying in obtaining of a hybrid? I was able to find one very cheap from a local guy.

Image

Gotta love those fuel-efficient hybrids.


How well is that handling in the snow and the freeway?
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby mos6507 » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 22:49:10

pasttense wrote:2. buy a large used gas guzzler for the other 10% of trips where
you need more capacity.


What do you think those 10% of the trips are, and do you think they are absolutely necessary? Couldn't they either be cancelled (think staycation) or you could just rent a truck when you need one? With a 2nd vehicle you need an extra registration, insurance, maintenance, and driveway space. That's assuming you own it, otherwise you have two sets of car payments as well until they are paid off ;)
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby retiredguy » Sat 21 Jun 2008, 22:55:36

Bought my Prius in March, 2003 for a little over $20K. The ECM went out late last year, but was covered completely under warranty.

We've driven to the East Coast and back four times during that period, getting around 50 mpg.

The small extra cost over a Camry at the time has more than been covered by the gas savings.

Still have three years left on the warranty and 55K on the odometer.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby thor » Sun 22 Jun 2008, 01:53:52

Drifter wrote:For me personally, I will always take a bicycle or walking any day over any car ownership. I laugh all the way to the bank.


Drifter,

I have explicitly chosen NOT to own a car because of the insane cost such a tax, insurance, parking, maintenance and gas.

Renting a car/bus for those cases when I do need some transportation is so much cheaper.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby joe1347 » Sun 22 Jun 2008, 06:15:58

joelcolorado wrote:Plus buying $7,000 in batteries at 100,000 miles adds to the cost. I was going to get one last year and then factored in all the costs and it wont pay even at $6 gas.


As pointed out above - Battery replacement is a myth likely started by either the oil companies or Detroit.
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Re: Hybrid sales plunge as demand keeps rising

Unread postby 3aidlillahi » Sun 22 Jun 2008, 06:23:08

How well is that handling in the snow and the freeway?


I don't think bikes are legal on the freeways...are they? That'd shave a good half mile off of my route and maybe even 10 minutes due to almost no hills I'd encounter.

I haven't tried it in the snow yet. I probably won't have to really worry about it either; I'm in NC. We get a few days of snow a year and a lot of times, school's cancelled. If not, there will be a lot less people on the road and I'll probably just have a mtn bike for that. If not, and the hybrid isn't safe, I've got my vehicle (but long term, I don't plan on living in a climate with snow).
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