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Honda CR-Z Hybrid Concept
Honda puts its Integrated Motor Assist on a cost diet

As reported previously on DailyTech, Honda has big plans in store for 2009 when it comes to hybrid vehicles. Honda is looking to do battle with the Toyota Prius which has the hybrid sector cornered in marketshare and mindshare.

In its efforts to tackle the Prius head-on, Honda plans to introduce a production version of the CR-Z Hybrid Concept; a five-door, five-seat hatchback which will retail for around $22,000; and a hybrid version of the company's popular sub-compact Fit. Honda's three-prong attack should bode well as consumers flock to more fuel-efficient vehicles.

According to Tech-On!, Honda will also take advantage of huge cost savings with the next generation Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) hybrid system which will be used in all three vehicles. The IMA, which was used in the discontinued Insight and Accord Hybrid along with the current Honda Civic will be as much as 50% cheaper says Tech-On!.

The cost savings come as a result of reductions to packaging and weight along with simplified construction of the critical components. The use of standardized components between hybrid models -- Fit, Civic Hybrid, CR-Z, etc. -- is also beneficial in reducing costs.

While Honda's costs for manufacturing the IMA are going down, it's unknown how much of those savings are going to be passed along to the consumer. Hybrids are a big business now in America with over $4.00 a gallon gasoline looming on consumers’ minds -- Toyota only has a one day supply of Prius' and a 2.5-day supply of Camry Hybrids on dealer lots when the typical automobile languishes for 60 days.

Whatever Honda decides to charge for its trio of new hybrids, more than likely there will be a steady stream of buyers lined up to drive them away from dealer lots.





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Wonderful...
By dever on 7/29/2008 1:35:40 PM , Rating: 5
Since it's so cheap, I guess that means they can stop diverting tax dollars to those who purchase hybrids, and let consumers choose it solely on it's merits.




RE: Wonderful...
By DallasTexas on 7/29/2008 2:36:35 PM , Rating: 4
When the cost of polluting the environment is factored into the cost of a car, hybrids will look a lot more competitive.

Today, that 11 MPG pile of junk that people use to haul their butt around is free to pollute the air at no charge. I hope that government 'subsidy' goes away.


RE: Wonderful...
By Spuke on 7/29/2008 5:24:34 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
When the cost of polluting the environment is factored into the cost of a car, hybrids will look a lot more competitive.
You mean I can throw my old Prius battery pack in the garbage now?


RE: Wonderful...
By randomly on 7/29/2008 10:50:34 PM , Rating: 5
No send it to me, since it's recycle value is hundreds of dollars.


RE: Wonderful...
By ebakke on 7/29/2008 10:21:26 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Today, that 11 MPG pile of junk that people use to haul their butt around is free to pollute the air at no charge. I hope that government 'subsidy' goes away.


If you're implying that we should have to pay for any pollution beyond some arbitrary amount (that the government decides), I cannot express how much I hope that never happens.


RE: Wonderful...
By andrinoaa on 7/30/08, Rating: 0
RE: Wonderful...
By ebakke on 7/30/2008 8:30:17 AM , Rating: 5
My complaint lies in who decides what is my "fair share". I just graduated from college a few months ago, and my state already decides that it's "fair" for me to be in the highest state tax bracket.

This also seems like it will be yet another burden on the poor. People with disposable income can purchase things that are energy efficient or "environmentally friendly". Poor people can't. So their old rust bucket with no catalytic converter pollutes like there's no tomorrow, but they can't afford to pay this tax. What's the solution then? My guess is that they get a new car (or their current car fixed) courtesy of my tax dollars.

As it stands today, each person can decide what their own "fair share" is. There is nothing stopping me from walking, generating my own electricity, biking to work, reusing everything, etc. On the flip side, if I don't buy into the argument that all of my actions are permanently damaging the beautiful and sacred Earth, I'm free to drive my car, use more electricity, etc.


RE: Wonderful...
By Ringold on 7/30/2008 12:30:00 PM , Rating: 3
Incidentally, I find it amusing that to neo-Marxist environmental activists "fair share" equals paying per unit of pollution, flat rate. The more you pollute, the more you pay. Most realistically, by way of purchasing carbon credits off a cap-'n-trade mechanism.

But for many of these same neo-Marxists, that same definition of 'fair' applied to income would be a non-starter. The high-earners "fair share" is vastly larger than other peoples "fair share" in relative terms.

Not that I'd accuse leftists of ideological consistency.


RE: Wonderful...
By ZmaxDP on 7/30/2008 5:21:27 PM , Rating: 2
Us "Rightists" aren't any better. We ideologically believe in a limited government that shouldn't be telling people what to do (like emission regulations, carbon caps, cafe standards, gun control, etc...) but we (as a party, not me personally) have a huge issue with abortion. We can't tell people not to pollute or own ak47's but we can tell women not get an abortion? So much for our ideological consistency.


RE: Wonderful...
By ebakke on 7/30/2008 6:55:44 PM , Rating: 2
The abortion argument seems to be one of immediate and permanent damage (more specifically, ending) of human life. The examples you provide don't kill people, or at least not immediately (for the pollution) or without the help of a deranged person (for the AK47). If you follow the protection of life logic, I suppose that's where the 'Right' justifies police, fire, military (in an ideal scenario) expenditures in government.


RE: Wonderful...
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 4:35:16 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
When the cost of polluting the environment is factored into the cost of a car, hybrids will look a lot more competitive.

Today, that 11 MPG pile of junk that people use to haul their butt around is free to pollute the air at no charge. I hope that government 'subsidy' goes away.


First, which 11MPG cars are you referring to? Most of the cars on the road, even 20+ years of older ones, are computer controlled, fuel injected, catalytic converted, and attain over 20MPG. In some city driving they may not reach this but neither do many other more efficient cars reach their peak efficiency.

Fact is, people with low income, that can't afford a newer car, also can't afford the gas to go driving around a lot, now more than ever with gas over $4 a gallon. I'd expect those with ancient cars are among the least polluting drivers due to this factor. IF they were actually driving around so much they would have worn out the car anyway.

Who is the more likely culprit? The upper middle class SUV owner who owns one only for the styling, never even taking it offroad. They can afford the gas to drive their gas guzzler. Even then, have you heard of gasoline tax? Isn't that essentially placing a burden based on the real factor of gallons used instead of your random hatred of anything but a new supposedly green car? AFAIK lots of states also have emissions checks so it's not as though many could get away with a normally aged, rather than antique restored, automobile that is especially polluting.

I suppose you feel there is no pollution involved with making the new cars everyone is supposed to buy. No penalty in landfill/junkyard space to throw away millions of cars, no pollution involved in having to drive to work more often, and produce more to earn more money to buy the new cars.

You didn't really think things through, IMO, are just using an excuse to hate a group of people which is a bit sad. In our history I'd expect random senseless hatred has resulted in far more death and suffering than automobile pollution. Congratulations on becoming so twisted.


RE: Wonderful...
By phxfreddy on 8/1/2008 11:29:55 PM , Rating: 2
Useless socialist.


RE: Wonderful...
By dever on 8/6/2008 5:25:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
11 MPG pile of junk... free to pollute
But at $4/gallon, 11mpg is not "free" to pollute. The cost is already built in.


Price change??
By marsbound2024 on 7/29/2008 2:54:02 PM , Rating: 2
Wikipedia states: "The CR-Z is expected to cost approximately €25,000 (with higher-trim models retailing up to €28k) and be primarily geared towards the European market." If you convert that to dollars, it seems to start at over $38,000. So did they pass the cost savings along to the consumer? $22,000 is pretty inexpensive. I hope they really target the US market as well with this vehicle. It is pretty sexy in my opinion.




RE: Price change??
By pauldovi on 7/29/2008 4:06:45 PM , Rating: 2
Production cars are never as cool as the concept cars.


RE: Price change??
By rudolphna on 7/29/2008 7:39:57 PM , Rating: 2
so true. why is it you see all these cool concepts, but the production model looks like the same ol bs weve been seeing for the past 30 years?


RE: Price change??
By strikeback03 on 7/30/2008 9:35:23 AM , Rating: 2
Well, most of the cars we see today that look like those of 30 years ago are intentional (Mustang), otherwise it usually has to do with regulations and cost. For a concept you can spend the money on special materials or methods to produce parts, but those processes are often too expensive or too slow for full production. Also, concept cars don't need to pass safety or emissions regulations.


RE: Price change??
By rudolphna on 7/30/2008 9:02:33 PM , Rating: 2
not quite whaat i meant. Look at that picture. how much you want to bet that the actual production car looks almost nothing like that?


RE: Price change??
By strikeback03 on 8/1/2008 8:23:57 AM , Rating: 2
and for some obvious reasons. Production wheels are likely to be smaller due to cost, side mirrors are likely larger due to practicality, and headlights are likely more conventional. I doubt that front bumper would pass safety regulations, probably have to be split and look more like an Audi front grille to get a full-width bumper beam behind it.


RE: Price change??
By steven975 on 7/29/2008 4:09:26 PM , Rating: 2
prices across regions have little to do with exchange rates and more to do with what they think they can get for the product.

If I had to guess, the US dollar price will be cheaper than the same price in Euros.

Even comparing Big Mac value meals, prices in Europe are much, much higher than the equivalent exchange rate here. In Great Britain, things often cost the same number in pounds that they do in the US in dollars.


RE: Price change??
By Ringold on 7/30/2008 12:42:23 PM , Rating: 2
There are baked-in taxes to consider in retail prices too, but thats a little different.

In defense of the Big Mac Index, it does reveal currency inconsistencies. For example, the index makes it obvious that the yuan is undervalued; virtually everybody, including the Chinese, acknowledge that it is, though the degree to which it is undervalued is uncertain. On the other hand, it does look like the Euro is possibly overvalued. How much? Not sure, but the dollar relative to the Euro has been beaten to a pulp, and anyone that's studied the basics of forex theory know currencies can overshoot in both directions. The index appears to verify this.

Also, ultimately imported product prices have to make sense with respect to exchange rates. If it's not rational, a firm can take huge losses. If it is rational, well.. the weak US dollar has translated in to large, tangible dollar gains for US exporters.


RE: Price change??
By foolsgambit11 on 7/29/2008 4:55:00 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Honda plans to introduce a production version of the CR-Z Hybrid Concept; a five-door, five-seat hatchback which will retail for around $22,000; and a hybrid version of the company's popular sub-compact Fit.

The price quoted ($22,000) is for the 'five-door, five-seat hatchback.' Not the CR-Z, not the Fit. No prices given in this article for them.


Honda's Claim
By pauldovi on 7/29/2008 1:48:41 PM , Rating: 2
Honda claims the hybrid models will come at a less than $1900 premium (over the non-hybrid version) to the consumer.




RE: Honda's Claim
By whirabomber on 7/29/2008 2:28:17 PM , Rating: 1
GM's vehicles (Malibu/Aurora) are only around $2000 over the price of a non-hybrid version. Most people do get a $1500-$2000 tax credit for buying a hybrid yet. Aside from the econo-box prius at what, around $30000 I don't see a lot of necessity to drive 100,000 to recoup the differences.

Of course, most hybrids only get 2-8 mpg over an equivalent non-hybrid car (excluding the Escape) so there isn't a point to "oh pee my pants, gas prices are up, let's take a big hit on the SUV and sardine into an econo-box hybrid." Especially since most hybrids are only 2nd-3rd generation with 4th-5th generation hybrid technologies just around the corner. I can eat the 2-8mpg I won't be getting extra for a little while until I can get a hybrid car that boast 15-20mpg over an equivalent non-hybrid.


RE: Honda's Claim
By pauldovi on 7/29/2008 3:13:41 PM , Rating: 2
The Malibu is a mild hybrid, meaning it simple has a beefier starter motor to allow for the engine to be turned off at stop lights without losing the accessories (radio / air conditioner). It is not really competiting with the Prius. I am not saying it is a bad idea though, a mild hybrid allows you to essentially pick all of the low fruit off the tree at little cost.


RE: Honda's Claim
By strikeback03 on 7/30/2008 9:38:48 AM , Rating: 3
Honda's IMA in the past has not been a true competitor to the Prius either as it could not run the car on pure electric. Was basically an electric booster motor, which also allowed energy to be recaptured through regenerative braking and engine shutdown at lights, etc.


RE: Honda's Claim
By whirabomber on 7/30/2008 1:19:07 PM , Rating: 2
I do like ford's approach (per escape) which is cover the city driving ~40mph average speed with electric and kick in a gas motor in for anything above that. I haven't had a chance to see if the 38/30mpg claim for the Escape is accurate (Consumer Reports - 2006? car round up - states most rates are off 5% to the bad, with Japan being anywhere from 10-20% off to the bad, depending on the vehicle). I am looking forward to the Fusion hybrid which will use a tweaked Escape engine.

I also can't say I hate ricers, just wish more US based manufacturers saw the gas train coming as re-active business planning isn't as much fun as pro-active business.


RE: Honda's Claim
By BigPeen on 7/29/08, Rating: -1
5-door
By acer905 on 7/30/2008 12:31:34 PM , Rating: 2
Random side note... when did auto makers start calling hatchbacks "5-door" vehicles?




RE: 5-door
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 4:39:39 PM , Rating: 2
Decades ago?


When SUV leases are over
By kmmatney on 7/29/2008 5:37:31 PM , Rating: 3
Gas didn't hit $3.00 a gallon until 2006, so in 2009 there'll be a lot of SUVs coming off of leases, and I can only imagine sale car lots being flooded with large SUVs.




Probably will cost more...
By abraxas1 on 7/29/2008 1:41:06 PM , Rating: 2
I imagine the need to recoup development costs will offset most of the cost reduction. A higher price will come from above average demand.




Thats nice to know
By Treckin on 7/29/08, Rating: -1
RE: Thats nice to know
By strikeback03 on 7/29/2008 1:47:36 PM , Rating: 3
Of course, that assumes you already own a fully-paid-for pickup, and were considering buying a new hybrid. As it is reasonable to expect that the pickup is 3-5 years old if it is paid off, you would be getting a newer (and therefore presumably cheaper to maintain under warranty) vehicle in the hybrid. Of course, anyone who actually needs a pickup is probably not considering any hybrids that get near 50MPG.

Both Toyota and Honda acknowledged that they were selling the original Prius and the Insight at below cost. No idea whether that is true of the current hybrids, but it is unlikely they are making as much per vehicle as the more conventional options.


RE: Thats nice to know
By UNCjigga on 7/29/2008 2:23:00 PM , Rating: 2
Where are all the 50-state compliant Bluetec diesel hybrids everyone's been drooling over? Why doesn't VW at least offer a hybrid diesel? I think if manufacturers could pair a 4- or 6-cylinder T2B5 diesel with a hybrid powertrain, you'd see pickups with gobs of torque that get at least 30 mpg and ULEV emissions.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Screwballl on 7/29/2008 2:41:18 PM , Rating: 3
because with diesel at $5-5.50 per gallon or higher and regular gasoline about $4 per gallon, it makes more sense to make gasoline hybrids...
50 mpg diesel or 50 mpg gas? when the difference is at least a full $1 per gallon, the gas would get the nod...


RE: Thats nice to know
By Sivar on 7/29/2008 3:35:00 PM , Rating: 1
Diesel contains about 30% more energy per gallon than gasoline, so all things being equal, you about break even with gas at $4.00 and diesel at $5.20. Diesel is about $5.00 in my area of the country (for the moment), so it wins by a few percent.

--Charles Burns


RE: Thats nice to know
By FITCamaro on 7/29/2008 4:40:47 PM , Rating: 2
$4.60ish here for diesel. Regular is at $3.75.


RE: Thats nice to know
By pauldovi on 7/29/2008 7:35:42 PM , Rating: 2
It is actually closer to 18%


RE: Thats nice to know
By OxBow on 7/29/2008 4:17:44 PM , Rating: 1
Diesel is not only more fuel efficient (longer stroke/cycle) but also clean diesel tech is a lot friendlier to the environment. As such, a clean diesel hybrid would be far greener than any comparable gasoline vechicle.


RE: Thats nice to know
By daftrok on 7/29/2008 7:28:46 PM , Rating: 3
I'm tired of fuel. When will we start getting affordable electric vehicles? It seems the only company close to that future is Tesla because they claim that in 2010 they're coming out with a 4-door electrical sedan with 220~ mile range and 60k price point. For an extra 10k you can have a solar panel and generator installed in your house so you'll never have to pay for fuel again. Granted 70 grand is still a kick in the nads but its a step in the right direction.


RE: Thats nice to know
By ebakke on 7/29/2008 10:26:43 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
I'm tired of fuel. When will we start getting affordable electric vehicles?

Once we can figure out how to upgrade our electrical grid. And that will happen once the environmental lobby can decide on a viable power supply; wind/solar just won't cut it.


RE: Thats nice to know
By daftrok on 7/31/2008 4:29:38 PM , Rating: 2
Why not? If every home has a solar panel on it not only will it power our homes and our cars but can spill some power back the the energy facilities which in turn can be used as an emergency back up system (note that every house will have a generator to store energy so in case the days are cloudy you will still have power).

It seems pretty cut and dry that the future is wind/solar. If it's a sunny day, it is usually not windy so predominately solar will power the country that day. If its cloudy that means that wind brought the clouds in the first place so we will have extra wind energy that day. Its the perfect balance and wind/solar is a very viable source of energy.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Regs on 7/30/2008 8:29:24 AM , Rating: 2
I agree too. At this point I'm willing to pay the extra 2-3k on a hybrid or fuel alternative, just so I can stick my middle finger up at excon, opec, and the other crooks on wall street.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 12:02:50 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
just so I can stick my middle finger up at excon, opec, and the other crooks on wall street.
Meanwhile, they'll whip their pants down at you while you crack open that plastic bowl filled with last nights Kraft's mac and cheese.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Regs on 7/30/2008 4:38:19 PM , Rating: 2
I miss glass too.


RE: Thats nice to know
By UNCjigga on 7/30/2008 11:22:05 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly. And I was referring to diesel hybrids for the light truck/SUV market specifically--those vehicles could really utilize the benefits of diesel.


RE: Thats nice to know
By paydirt on 7/29/08, Rating: 0
RE: Thats nice to know
By steven975 on 7/29/2008 4:01:51 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, those leasing full size SUVs are not having to bear the brunt of the dramatically lowered resale values. In the case of these cars and pickups, if one had leased them versus bought them and traded it in, they would be orders of magnitude better off financially.

Still, I agree that buying new and trading in regularly is dumb. Also, the cost of the hybrid OPTION should be considered for break-even, not the cost of the car.


RE: Thats nice to know
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 4:48:09 PM , Rating: 2
It should be the cost of the car because the typical buyer is someone who already owns a car, or can buy used at a very large difference in cost. It is a very real cost to replace a still functional car with a new one. Besides wrecking the old truck, it can be cost effective to repair it until it has completely rusted down to a pile so long as you know of a fair repair shop or do most of your own repair work.

However, Treckin never wrote anything about trade-in or leasing, Paydirt's reply was just a rabid rant.


RE: Thats nice to know
By pauldovi on 7/29/2008 7:33:57 PM , Rating: 2
BMW will be releasing their "Bluetec" diesel 3 and 7 series this year. Honda is coming out with a diesel rated at 63MPG highway and requires no additive.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Nik00117 on 7/30/2008 1:19:23 AM , Rating: 1
I just recently rented a diesel car for a trip. I took this same trip 1 year ago in a gas car. By the time I got to teh city I had like 1/5 of a tank. WIth my diesel hammering the living shit out of it I had 1/2 a tank I did 120 MPH all the way up here, braking and pedal to the medal it. Needless to say half a tank? And I hammered it? And people say h dieselisn't worth it? Fucking right, diesel crashes reg gas.


RE: Thats nice to know
By strikeback03 on 7/30/2008 9:45:18 AM , Rating: 3
Unless they happen to have the same size tank, the comparison is meaningless.


RE: Thats nice to know
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 4:51:13 PM , Rating: 2
Way to go, let's all waste fuel and pollute senselessly by driving 120MPH! Fortunately you may end up with a Darwin Award if you keep it up, but I hope you don't harm anyone else with your recklessness in the meantime.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 12:05:10 PM , Rating: 2
You need to convert the UK gallons to US gallons, unless you're not American then it doesn't matter. It's not 63 mpg US, it's 52 mpg US.


RE: Thats nice to know
By JonnyDough on 7/30/2008 6:49:52 AM , Rating: 2
I'll tell you where they are. Diesel is expensive. There's little point in making the car that gets better gas mileage if the gas itself costs more.


RE: Thats nice to know
By abzillah on 7/29/2008 1:51:02 PM , Rating: 2
Why is everyone so pessimistic here? The prices to produce these vehicles will be down by up to 50% and Honda is looking at battling with Toyota for the hybrid market, so you very well know the savings will be passed on to the consumers due to competition.
No one is screwing you and no one will. The only one that can screw you is yourself for making bad decisions. What do you want Honda to do, give you the car for free? Will you then stop complaining? So please read the article before posting.


RE: Thats nice to know
By kamra on 7/29/2008 2:04:22 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
No one is screwing you and no one will.


talk about lol'ing here. a car company not trying to screw the customer? hahahahahaha. thanks... best joke of the day!!!


RE: Thats nice to know
By stirfry213 on 7/29/2008 2:18:21 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
No one is screwing you and no one will.


No, the UAW will take of that for you...


RE: Thats nice to know
By UNCjigga on 7/29/2008 2:18:22 PM , Rating: 1
Only domestic car manufacturers (Ford, GM) screw their customers by selling them crap that can't hold any value after 1 year. Other than that, car companies hardly ever screw the customer--that's the DEALER's job!


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spivonious on 7/29/2008 2:43:27 PM , Rating: 3
My Ford just turned 5 and is still worth about 33% of it's invoice price. That's pretty good in my book.


RE: Thats nice to know
By barjebus on 7/29/2008 3:25:33 PM , Rating: 1
That's disgusting. I don't mean to be mean or anything...but that depreciation is one of the many reasons I won't ever buy a domestic. I routinely see 5 year old Honda's being sold for 60 - 70% of their value, and the demand for them is always huge, so you know you'll be able to find a buyer for your civic or accord. It just boggles my mind why anyone would buy a car that becomes worthless in just a few years...specifically cars like saturns, etc.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/29/2008 7:28:45 PM , Rating: 1
uh, because we like to support our country and buy american Made (not just assembled cars) i live in lorain county ohio, and if you know anything about ford, there are 2 Ford plants here. Ive seen the effect of foriegn cars on the people here, hard working people who are getting laid off because they cant afford to keep in buisness because of foreign cars. Ford cars are good, quality cars. My family has only ever owned Fords, and they have never had a problem, with the exception of the fairly crappy Motorcraft ignition coils in our expedition. Our expedition is 6 years old and has 50% of its original value. granted it only has 45k miles on it but thats still good. go screw yourself and your honda.


RE: Thats nice to know
By pauldovi on 7/29/2008 7:41:16 PM , Rating: 3
It doesn't make sense to "support American cars". If you purchased the cheaper and better Japanese car you would be sending Japan money. Now if Japan liked to collect dollars that would be all well and good for them and us. But they don't, they want something in return for those dollars. Even though you may think that Japanese stuff is cheaper than our stuff, when you are in Japan with a bunch of dollars, you cannot get equal value dollar for yen. Perhaps you can get 80% of the value of the dollar in yen. So now for the Japanese stuff in America is cheaper to buy.

You want to do what you are good at. Does it make sense for American workers to build cars when Japanese workers are better? Should a lawyer fire his secretary and start typing because he is a better secretary than she is (but she is not a better lawyer).

Nonsense


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/30/2008 12:57:11 AM , Rating: 2
yes it does make sense. And for one thing, most foreign cars are assembled in the united states. However, the value is added overseas, the money you spend on that car goes into the Nikkei Stock Exchange, instead of the NYSE and the NASDAQ, and S&P 500 where it needs to be. The foreign car makers use more robots and automation than American makers do, therefor needing less jobs than a comparable Ford or GM plan, while also forcing said companies to lay off employees. So Honda toyota etc are really forcing more people out of work than jobs they are creating. If all that money people spent on foreign cars went to the US economy, we would be in better shape than we are now.


RE: Thats nice to know
By andrinoaa on 7/30/2008 2:29:18 AM , Rating: 2
I bet your truck isn't worth 60%. Gm and Ford have lots of new ones they can't sell!
If you are so loyal to "American made", tell me then, why has Gm and Ford been squeezing as much money out of their customers ( suckers ) as possible? If the sympathy was recipricated, I could understand. But they are willing to bleed you dry, can't you see? They are in it for the money, not the glory of america.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/30/2008 12:06:12 PM , Rating: 2
and maybe there is a reason. like that they are losing money out the ass to foreign makers.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Ringold on 7/30/2008 1:05:06 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not sure where you're coming from. "Domestic" and "foreign" manufacturers have roughly equal amounts of domestic (US) sourced components, which means the value-added is basically the same for both. Where the USD flows really doesn't matter, as sooner or later USD sent overseas comes back in the form of investment. In many cases, the dollars made from selling products here by foreign firms is never repatriated back to their home country, but plowed right in to expansion here. (More tax efficient, and it avoids trying to game forex markets)

As for using robotics, it should be obvious why the foreign companies use more. Their factories are new. If GM and Ford could build new plants from the ground up, and were forced to do so in the US, they'd probably be the most automated plants in the world due to the huge incentive (thanks to the UAW) to use as little low-skill labor as is technologically possible. In a wider sense, you're banging your head against the advancement of technology more than you are attacking foreign firms, who simply have more up-to-date plants.

Beyond that, the implication is false. When a new, even largely automated, car assembly plant opens, those are new jobs that did not exist before. It is labor unions and technology that leads to fewer employment opportunities for low skilled labor. Foreign and domestic firms are simply agents of the free market; the geographical location upon which their corporate HQ is located is irrelevant.

What you're really doing is making a trade protectionist argument, but such arguments hold little/no intellectual water, but I'm not up to a wall-o-text explaining the basics. Suffice it to say, there are gains from trade, proven since 1817.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/30/2008 4:04:36 PM , Rating: 2
yes, they are creating new jobs. but the buisness they take away causes Ford and GM to lay off employees and decrease production. but because of the robotics, they are creating less jobs than they are forcing poeple to lose.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Ringold on 7/30/2008 4:54:43 PM , Rating: 2
Okay, so your position boils down to that of a Luddite railing against the advancement of technology? Sorry, but as far as your nationalist argument goes, Ford and GM, as I pointed out, has much more incentive than even the "foreign" manufacturers to automate production due to their high UAW labor costs. The only way to change that would be to crush the UAW. If they lag behind in automation, it's simply because their crappy products don't sell and their high labor costs severely cripple their agility, not because they are inherently more altruistic and wish to employ armies of low-skilled labor on assembly lines.

By the way, GM and Ford has "out-sourced" probably more production then the "foreign" firms, with "domestic" plants providing the US market from Mexico and Canada -- and the Chevy Aveo being imported all the way from South Korea.

But yes. Let's just throw the robots in the nearest river, so that only the ultra-rich can afford a legion of "artisans" to hand-build their vehicles.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/30/2008 9:00:56 PM , Rating: 2
did you know that the Model T was built entirely by hand on this wonderful invention called an assembly line. And for the record, i have no problem with technology. I love technology. Better cars, more fuel efficeient cars etc. But its a fact that a human assembly line provides more jobs than a robotic assembly line.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Pudro on 7/30/2008 4:47:47 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Ive seen the effect of foriegn cars on the people here, hard working people who are getting laid off because they cant afford to keep in buisness because of foreign cars.


Boo hoo. I guess you must blame all those damn foreigners stealing their jobs away to make Hondas in Marysville, Ohio . Or those making the seats for those Hondas in Reynoldsburg, Ohio . Or those dozen other places in Ohio where people make a living working either for Honda or for their company which makes their seats and trim.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/30/2008 12:15:29 PM , Rating: 2
did you read anything i just said?


RE: Thats nice to know
By Noya on 7/30/2008 8:40:46 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Our expedition is 6 years old and has 50% of its original value. granted it only has 45k miles on it but thats still good. go screw yourself and your honda.


I call BS. What a "book" says you can get and what you can sell something for is two entirely different things. Especially since regular unleaded is $4.30+, trucks/SUV's have been nosediving for months...and when was the "book" updated?

In my neck of the woods, 2002 Expeditions are at asking prices of $7,500-$11,000 with 35-65k on them. MSRP was: $30555 - $41085 in 2002, and in 2002 SUV's were sold at MSRP+ (like the Prius is now). Best case you're at...about 28% of original price, at worst less than 25%.

Only ever owned Fords? Bad move, Bubba. That's like buying an AMD Phenom just because the Athlon64 architecture used to kick ass... wait , Ford's never kicked ass in my lifetime, bad analogy.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/30/2008 12:13:37 PM , Rating: 2
I dont have a problem with gas. I deal with it. Its not so bad considering overseas they are seeing $12+ per gallon of unleaded. And just fyi, its a 2003 model year, not 2002. besides we dont plan on trading it in. the gas cant justify the price of a new car when the car we have now works perfectly well. We have never had problmes with ford vehicles. Other than a bad alternator and a bad ignition coil on it, its had no problems. Its been driven from ohio to maine, to callifornia, to florida and back, and its still running like new. My grandfather has an 94' explorer, with 300k+ miles on it, again, no major problems beyond the transmission going at 130k and 290k miles. Grandmother has a Ford Edge, and ill be honest with you, its got some pep to it. I almsot gave myself whiplash the first time i drove it, i didnt expect it to have so much power from that little 4 cylinder. So tell me, if we dont have problems, why should we spend 20-40k $$ on new cars?


RE: Thats nice to know
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 5:03:50 PM , Rating: 2
For many people, today the TCO on a car that starts out less expensive, stays lower over the life of the car. They don't resell the car in a handful of years, they drive it for the entirety of it's expected lifespan at which point it's either taken to the junkyard or has an insignificant difference in resale value vs the import.

That doesn't necessarily mean some imports aren't more refined than their American equivalents, but on the other hand the big stink about how bad American cars were was largely about the 70's through early 90's, it's not nearly as true today in 2008.

In case you hadn't noticed, there are Fords, Chevys, etc, driving around everywhere, every day. The differences you pretend to know about are far less significant than you thought... Bubba.


RE: Thats nice to know
By HsiKai on 7/29/08, Rating: 0
RE: Thats nice to know
By JediJeb on 7/29/2008 4:18:07 PM , Rating: 2
My Ford F150 4x4 is 12 years old and has 200k miles on it ,and is still worth over 25% of what I paid for it. I will probably drive it another 5 to 10 years. Only thing I have done is replace the crappy automatic locking hubs that came with it.

I calculated what I spend per month in gas and if I increase from the 18mpg to 36mpg with a new vehicle I have to find one I can make $100 per month payments on to break even, doubt I can get a hybrid for that. So looks like I will be driving on and still saving money with my truck.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spivonious on 7/29/2008 4:34:59 PM , Rating: 3
I'm pretty sure your 325 was worth a lot more new too ;)

Going from $12000 to $4000 is good in my book when the car has some small dents and stained carpets inside. It can't be compared to a Civic, because Civics maintain high demand due to high schoolers wanting a used one to "pimp".

Don't know why you mentioned it, but my mileage is about the same as yours, although a bit higher on the highway (around 34-35 by my calculations).

The car has gotten me where I need to go for five years and shows no signs of slowing down after 71,000 miles.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spivonious on 7/29/2008 4:36:47 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, and who said cars are an investment? Unless your car becomes a "classic", it will only ever lose value. Not a very good investment.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/29/2008 7:31:04 PM , Rating: 2
very true. The second you drive your new car off the lot it loses something like 30% of its value, when it becomes a "used" car


RE: Thats nice to know
By Noya on 7/30/2008 8:21:47 AM , Rating: 2
Which is why you buy a 1-2 year old "creampuff" or takeover someones lease.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spivonious on 7/29/2008 4:41:32 PM , Rating: 2
I just checked your BMW's value...you really paid $20k for it new?


RE: Thats nice to know
By FITCamaro on 7/29/2008 4:43:49 PM , Rating: 3
Many people don't view their cars as investments. I sure don't. It's a car. A tool to get from point A to point B. A fun toy to enjoy when possible. Not a means to make money off of.


RE: Thats nice to know
By HsiKai on 7/29/2008 5:47:08 PM , Rating: 2
Cars are investments if they help you do one of several things we tend to take for granted and have become ingrained in our society:
- Travel to a location of employment that otherwise would be difficult or time consuming to reach. Most people don't live withing "walking distance" of their place of employment. Thus owning a private means of transportation is valuable.
- Assists your basic health by helping you get to the doctor, dentist, or other health care professional.
- Entertainment. Whatever you do for entertainment might not be possible if you don't have a method of transportation. And at this point bicycles really are irrelevant for most things.

When you really think about what you use a car for and the benefits you would otherwise not have without it, it becomes clear that it is a tool. And tools are investments. I think FIT's diction is just a bit off.

One may contrast a house, which typically appreciates, to a car, which depreciates (up to a point with some models), and say that the car cannot be an investment. A true investment is being able to get your money out of your purchase and if a greater part of your money is retained over time it has a higher value. So a car with a higher proportionate value over time than other is a better investment .

To summarize, I was suggesting that while you may not be able to make money off buying a car, you can make a smart investment in a car that doesn't depreciate as quickly while also providing whatever "fun" comforts you would enjoy, whether that's a 6.2L V8 in a Corvette or a "sporty" ride in an Audi. Some cars have a better value than others. Period. Ford is just an easy example of cars that typically don't and many of them have disproportionately high costs of maintenance.

Also, for all the spirited drivers, myself included, I would hardly call a good car just "a car." It's much more than that if you choose to use it that way. Otherwise, stick to mass transit and save a few pounds of CO2.


RE: Thats nice to know
By adiposity on 7/29/2008 6:24:15 PM , Rating: 2
Depends how you define "investment." At my company we invest in computer hardware to help us make money. It works. But the computer hardware depreciates. Well, duh. As long as the depreciation doesn't make the investment a waste, we make money. Just because something is a "tool" doesn't make it not an investment. Most things people invest in lose value but some are worth the depreciation because of the use gotten out of those things.

Cars are one of the things that definitely depreciates and rarely is worth what the average American pays and loses in depreciation. My father will only buy Hondas after they are 10+ years old because of this fact. Sure, his cars are kinda crappy, sometimes they smell, and sometimes they have minor mechanical problems like faulty windows, etc. or no working A/C. But he's getting a lot better deal in his investment than I, as I buy nicer cars that I enjoy driving in (I still refuse to buy any newer than 3 years, though). He pretty much always gets from A to B despite his 20+ (now) year-old cars.

On the other hand, I'm enjoying my car (which is now 7 years old), so that's a payoff that's hard to measure.

If you use your car to be able to work, it definitely is part of the money-making equation.

-Dan


RE: Thats nice to know
By EglsFly on 7/29/2008 4:53:03 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I hope that GM's Volt will be able to compete with cheaper hybrids
I do as well, as I like the all electric / motor generator approach. However, rumors I hear are the Volt is going to cost around $40K. This fact alone will doom the car for failure if competitors in this field are selling hybrids in the $20K range. Sure the Volt is a different approach, but a substantial difference in cost is going to be a deciding factor on what people choose to buy that are in the market for that this of vehicle.


RE: Thats nice to know
By HsiKai on 7/29/2008 6:25:08 PM , Rating: 2
One hopes that the lithium-ion batteries used in the Volt will last longer than the NiMH batteries used in the Prius. I don't know what they'll use in the CR-Z.

Also, regarding the price of the CR-Z in Europe where it will be first released:
quote:
The CR-Z is expected to cost approximately €25,000 (with higher-trim models retailing up to €28k)...


With a release date in the US likely to be 2010 that's reassuring to GM, if not the consumer. Also, since the CR-Z will have 4-doors I think the Volt may better cater to those who want a coupe. Although the only pictures I've seen, especially those in the original article, are of a CR-Z coupe, like the Volt. I'm not sure how they'll get two more doors out of that, maybe short suicide doors like on the RX-8?


RE: Thats nice to know
By HsiKai on 7/29/2008 6:28:15 PM , Rating: 2
Oops, meant ".. 2010 model year" so late 2009. But then that suggests Europe might get it a full model year ahead of us?


RE: Thats nice to know
By Oregonian2 on 7/29/2008 2:20:17 PM , Rating: 2
He wasn't talking about attempting -- he was talking about succeeding. Nearly every ad or brochure about any product is an "attempt to screw" -- but most having a clue and over perhaps 8 years old has caught on (one hopes). But yes, if the maker says "our product is wonderful" and someone just believes the car salesman because he's got such an honest face (and by coincidence also happens to be interested in the same hobbies), and buys one based just upon that, then you're right.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Alexstarfire on 7/29/2008 3:49:56 PM , Rating: 2
OK, you, like many others, are misinterpreting it. They save 50% on the hybrid components, not the entire car. The customer might see half that if they are lucky. Basically it's just bringing the cost of hybrid cars closer to that of conventional cars, which is a great thing.


RE: Thats nice to know
By michael2k on 7/29/2008 1:55:10 PM , Rating: 2
That is $3k at current prices.

Now reevaluate your position if someone is choosing between a NEW pickup vs a NEW hybrid. If a new Prius costs $25k and a new Ford F-150 costs $25k, then you recoup the costs after you drive 400 miles.

There are many different aspects to this argument.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/29/2008 4:49:58 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
then you recoup the costs after you drive 400 miles.
You recoup the costs in gas mileage but you can't put 4 bales of hay in a Prius. I, honestly, don't think you can compare a truck to a car. There are differing priorities and uses for each vehicle.


RE: Thats nice to know
By michael2k on 7/29/2008 5:27:13 PM , Rating: 2
Hey, don't complain to me, I wasn't making any comparison between hybrid vs pickup; the OP was the one positing 12mpg for a truck and 50mpg for a hybrid, I just used comparably priced models in my response.

And my point is valid: After 400 miles you will have spent $100 more in the truck.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/29/2008 7:08:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And my point is valid: After 400 miles you will have spent $100 more in the truck.
And then I lost that $100 when I have to rent a truck to pick up said bales of hay that I can't pick up in the Prius. My point is valid also.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2008 12:07:59 AM , Rating: 2
That's one hell of an expensive rent. What you have to look at though is how much you're going to use said pick-up truck. If you need it for that one trip, then it's obviously worth renting it. If you're a construction worker and use the bed on a daily basis, then obviously getting the truck just makes more sense. Also, in this day and age it's not like a family only has one car anyways. You could have said pick-up truck that you use for hauling then, but then the Prius or something similar to go to work and do errands in.

BTW, depending on the size of the bales of hay I bet you a Prius could fit 4.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 12:44:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
BTW, depending on the size of the bales of hay I bet you a Prius could fit 4.
Actually truck rent starts out at $37/day but after all is said and done, the price is closer to $120/day (three day rent over the weekend).

Don't know what kind of bales you're talking about. When I go to the feed store, there's only one size and 4 of those don't fit in a Prius (I actually buy 7 but just pulled four out of my butt as an example). Not to mention a bale of hay weighs close to 100 lbs (some are heavier) each and are 4 to 5 feet long. Not sure you want 400 lbs hanging out the back of your car (I don't).

As much as I use my truck, it would cost me more to rent one than to just simply buy it. I go to the feed store three times a month, at least. We tow the horses for trail riding, the vet, etc. I also do DIY stuff and having the bed space comes in handy. We also use the truck for camping (our tent fits in the bed).

Some may disagree, but if you have horses or livestock, you really need a truck if just for emergencies. The equestrian community is close and we help each other out. When there's fires, we grab the truck and trailer and help the other ranches evacuate their horses. We've helped our neighbors transport their horses to the vet in emergencies (which happen more often than you think) and vice versa.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 12:46:04 PM , Rating: 2
Umm....that's $120 over the weekend. I've rented before to help people move to cut down on trips.


RE: Thats nice to know
By michael2k on 7/30/2008 1:11:22 PM , Rating: 2
As I said before, if you want to argue pickup vs car, talk to the original poster. My only point was that gas was cheaper in a hybrid when comparing a pickup vs a truck. I have no beef with your utility argument, it's why I own a station wagon (2 kids, four adults) and not a hybrid, yet.


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/29/2008 7:34:37 PM , Rating: 2
enter the people who whine and complain and say that nobody needs a pickup truck/or SUV. like the people who say that you can comfortably fit 5 people, a dog, and luggage for said 5 people for a 3 week trip to visit family 500 miles away- into a Civic/corolla etc.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 12:50:17 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
enter the people who whine and complain and say that nobody needs a pickup truck/or SUV.
Most of the people that complain are single or have small families and live a the city. Most people, really, can't see past their own noses and it's difficult for them to see someone else having differing needs than they. Of course, someone will disagree with me but if I were wrong then those that disagree would make a post showing their understanding. And I wouldn't have to make posts like this one.


RE: Thats nice to know
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 5:12:53 PM , Rating: 2
Of course some people do, but suppose a family owns 2 or more cars and one member is driving the SUV alone, no other people nor large cargo, while the more efficient car sits unused in the driveway, it creates a reasonably valid perception that they weren't so interested in economy as other factors.


RE: Thats nice to know
By DeepBlue1975 on 7/29/2008 1:55:36 PM , Rating: 2
I make only 3500 miles a year on my car.
I know I'm among the smallest minority, but it's funny to see how for somebody like me paying more for less consumption would mean half a lifetime to recover the extra money :D


RE: Thats nice to know
By stirfry213 on 7/29/2008 2:13:06 PM , Rating: 2
Here's my thought. My car gets 31 MPG (this is actual MPG I get, not projected) and I have no car payment. How long would it take a person in my position to recoupe thier investment?


RE: Thats nice to know
By Smartless on 7/29/2008 2:37:24 PM , Rating: 2
See that all depends... How far you drive, price of gas in your area, and whether or not you want spinning rims on your powder blue Honda Fit. :P


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/29/2008 4:51:00 PM , Rating: 2
What costs are you trying to recoup?


RE: Thats nice to know
By mles1551 on 7/29/2008 2:44:36 PM , Rating: 3
All the math is true, you can never financially justify buying a hybrid just for the gas mileage difference versus your current vehicle.

Not even when you are buying a new vehicle does the hybrid version of those vehicles make financial sense.

I'd like nothing more than to drive a Prius for Yaris money, but until that happens I have to buy what makes financial sense for my wallet.


RE: Thats nice to know
By DallasTexas on 7/29/2008 2:56:04 PM , Rating: 2
Agree that the challenge for widespread adoption of fuel efficient cars are competition from cheap polluters. Fortunately, lots of people will buy for more noble reasons other than price and help drive the volumes up and cost down.

A similar argument can be made for recycling. It is still 'cheaper' to dump everything in the landfill. Yet, lots of people recycle. Even more will recycle as city governments continue to make it more expensive to dump w/o consideration.

Consider the true cost of a gallon of gas may be much higher when one factors the cost of stationing military personal in the middle east. You don't see it because you pay it in the form of taxes. Is that trillion dollars spent in Iraq to preserve the oil flow being paid at the pump?


RE: Thats nice to know
By andrinoaa on 7/30/2008 2:39:51 AM , Rating: 2
Your pinching my line!
We are not paying the true cost of oil. What with military spending and uncosted worldwide misery not to mention the polution. I think it would make hybrids far more attractive if oil payed its true cost.


RE: Thats nice to know
By pauldovi on 7/29/2008 3:33:37 PM , Rating: 2
At an MSRP of $21,500 for a mid size vehicle you aren't driving 100,000 to make up the difference.

Compared to the Camry, your saving after 54,000 using $4 gas. Compare it to a SUV / Trunk it will be even less. If you plan on putting 100,000 miles on the car, you'll be ahead.


RE: Thats nice to know
By TennesseeTony on 7/29/2008 4:07:08 PM , Rating: 4
It's unfortunate that you mindlessly believed them, and their math.

100,000 miles at 12mpg is 8333 gallons. At $4 a gallon that's $33,333, versus $8000 for the hybrid. A $25,333 difference. Many hybrids DO cost that and more, but to say it's not cost effective to purchase "any sub-compact gas saver" is ludicrous. A $17,000 Honda Fit, plus $12,120 in fuel nets you what, $4200 in savings? (it only gets 33mpg-ish)

As someone mentioned, this is purely based on the truck being paid for. If it's not paid for, the financial benefits are compounded that much more.

The best screw I know of, by the way, was the Lincoln Navigator, back in the day. FoMoCo made a pure profit of $14,000 each, and then the dealer got his cut from you too!


RE: Thats nice to know
By rudolphna on 7/29/2008 7:38:14 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The best screw I know of, by the way, was the Lincoln Navigator, back in the day. FoMoCo made a pure profit of $14,000 each, and then the dealer got his cut from you too!
you know this for a fact? besides, its a lincoln, they always charge more. its a status thing. do you really think it costs Mercedes Benz $100,000 to make a small sports car? or ferrari $300,000 or whatever they cost to make them? nooooooo....


RE: Thats nice to know
By strikeback03 on 7/30/2008 9:56:30 AM , Rating: 2
I remember reading that in one of the car magazines, they were reporting on why the automakers were happy to turn out such vehicles.

And with the small number of Ferraris built and lack of interchangeable parts between models, I wouldn't be surprised if they clear less profit per vehicle than the ~25-30% those Navigators did. Though I don't think buying a Ferrari can ever be justified other than "I want one", so you can't really be screwed if you get what you want. Ford might release a car that is similarly quick, but it won't be a Ferrari.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 1:29:52 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
ferrari $300,000 or whatever they cost to make them? nooooooo....
Ferrari uses a lot of expensive materials and production methods. I doubt it cost them much less than $150k to build those cars.


RE: Thats nice to know
By teldar on 7/29/2008 4:11:21 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
They stated (and did the math) than to recoup your initial investment from moving from a 12 MPG pickup, to a 50 MPG hybrid, would mean one would have to put 100,000 miles on the vehicle to break even, while anything on top of that is money in the bank. I LOL'd.


I don't understand what you're saying.

Are you indicating that hybrid is a scam?

If someone is driving a 12 MPG truck, they are most likely using it as a work truck. Most f-150's get in the 16 MPG range and while that is not great, it is a HUGE percentage difference over 12 MPG. That drives the miles needed to be driven up by a third to 133,000 miles.

Here's something NOBODY thinks about, or atleast doesn't post about it.....

What do you think it's going to cost to replace the battery pack in 120k miles when it craps out? You know they are warrantied for like 100k miles when they have an 120k mile life expectancy? Suddenly paying ad additional $8k for a new battery pack doesn't look so attractive when you're trying to get to 133k miles to offset the initial cost.....

There's a little more math for you all.

However. There is a bonus if the batteries are made here in the U.S. (They are made in Japan). If they were made here, we would be spending the money on U.S. made batteries instead of Canadian (our largest single country oil supplier) or Middle Eastern oil. So there would be a net savings for our economy...

T


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/29/2008 5:21:44 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Suddenly paying ad additional $8k for a new battery pack doesn't look so attractive when you're trying to get to 133k miles to offset the initial cost
A Prius replacement battery costs about $4000 plus about $1200 labor from what I understand. Some people say this cost shouldn't be considered when buying a hybrid and if you are the type that switches cars every 4 to 5 years then those people are correct.


RE: Thats nice to know
By teldar on 7/29/2008 5:37:52 PM , Rating: 2
So far, my 11 yo Ford Contour has 163k miles on it and it's going to have to last another couple years as I'm in grad school and the wife's the only income. And she's pregnant. So the income is going to stop coming in fairly soon......

I hadn't heard that battery packs were down that much. Makes it a lot more attractive than it used to be.

Anyone know what the status is on recycling of the NiMH batteries they use? Is there any?


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/29/2008 7:16:37 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I hadn't heard that battery packs were down that much. Makes it a lot more attractive than it used to be.
$6200 is WAY too much for me especially since you still have the gas engine repair costs too. But I did read that you can buy them on ebay in the mid $500 range. Not sure I want an old battery in my car but if you're in a jam and outside the warranty, that's probably the only way to go. Not sure how they handle shipping hazardous materials though.

quote:
Anyone know what the status is on recycling of the NiMH batteries they use? Is there any?
I would imagine the dealership would dispose of them for you. Toyota is supposed to pay the dealerships $200 to dispose of the old batteries.


RE: Thats nice to know
By teldar on 7/30/2008 6:51:40 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
$6200 is WAY too much for me especially since you still have the gas engine repair costs too. But I did read that you can buy them on ebay in the mid $500 range. Not sure I want an old battery in my car but if you're in a jam and outside the warranty, that's probably the only way to go. Not sure how they handle shipping hazardous materials though.


Well, that was part of my point on long term use of a hybrid vehicle. They may nearly pay for themselves in the long run, but you may well be hit up for an additional several thousand dollars in battery replacement...... It's better than I had thought, but it's not like it's insignificant by any means.

T


RE: Thats nice to know
By Alexstarfire on 7/30/2008 12:15:32 AM , Rating: 2
Nobody talks about it because it's not an issue. You should read up on all the articles where the Prius owners have their battery fully functional at 250,000 miles. If you went and looked to see how many batteries were replaced, you'd find it'd be a very small number. Even smaller for those that had to pay out of pocket because the warranty didn't cover it.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 1:33:21 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Even smaller for those that had to pay out of pocket because the warranty didn't cover it.
It's happened more often than you think and even though the numbers are small, I would HATE to be the guy that had to pay out of pocket to get it replaced because you were out of warranty. I don't know about you, but I sure as hell don't have the "it'll never happen to me" attitude. I will simply buy a car that's cheaper to maintain, even in catastrophic situations.


RE: Thats nice to know
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 5:28:10 PM , Rating: 2
The cost of a replacement battery absolutely must be factored into total cost of ownership on a vehicle expected to otherwise last longer than the battery does.

They're not going to give most people free batteries, IIRC it is 100% replacement for 3 years, then prorated up to 8 years or 100K miles, whichever comes first, after which the warranty is over.


RE: Thats nice to know
By mindless1 on 7/30/2008 5:23:32 PM , Rating: 2
You are ignoring two very important factors in battery wear.

Time and driving patterns. So many miles so quickly is a lot different than the typical driver, especially one that is really trying to be conservative.

Does the warranty cover getting a new battery *free* or is it pro-rated. I would expect the latter so it's not a matter of whether you have to replace the battery, someone has to bear that cost!


RE: Thats nice to know
By teldar on 7/30/2008 6:54:29 PM , Rating: 2
Are you sure it's not an issue in cold weather climates? I believe I have seen the recommendation to store a hybrid car in a heated garage. That's not exactly a cost-free situation.
And what is the penalty to not only lifespan but also to functionality if they are not in a heated garage.

Please don't tell me there isn't one because ALL batteries do better when they are warm than when they are frozen.
T


RE: Thats nice to know
By andrinoaa on 7/30/2008 2:49:35 AM , Rating: 2
One thing nobody with a truck is willing to say "have power, love to use it". The economy figures some people brag about are really out there. Really, you drive slow to save on gas!!!!
If you own a truck for work, NON OF THE ABOVE really applies to you. And lets face it, not many of us needed to collect the bales of hay today.


RE: Thats nice to know
By Spuke on 7/30/2008 1:44:32 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
One thing nobody with a truck is willing to say "have power, love to use it".
I won't because the power to weight on a truck isn't all that great and their handling and braking are terrible. Sure, the newer trucks are pretty quick in a straight line but still terrible in corners. I'm a car guy and prefer cars.

I have a truck because my wife loves horses. Even though my wife likes the truck, in two years, she wants a fun car (probably a used 08 or 09 MINI Cooper S) to drive and the truck will only get used for horse related stuff and camping. We save some gas and she'll get a car she'll REALLY enjoy driving.


"When an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song." -- Sony BMG attorney Jennifer Pariser
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