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2010 Toyota Prius

2010 Honda Insight
Base Prius gets a $1,000 price cut

The most popular hybrid car on the market is the Toyota Prius. The Prius has been around for a decade now and Toyota is getting set to launch a new and larger Prius for 2010 that offers an increased feature set and better fuel economy. One early road test showed that the 2010 Prius achieved 52.5 mpg.

Toyota is going to be pricing the third-generation 2010 Prius to better compete with Honda's new Insight hybrid. The Insight carries a base MSRP of $19,800, undercutting the 2009 Prius selling for a base MSRP of $22,000. However, the 2010 Prius I will carry an MSRP of $21,000 which helps to close the gap between the two hybrids. The 2010 Prius will be offered in five trim levels with the II, III, IV, and V coming in at $22,000, $23,000, $25,800, and $27,720 respectively.

Bob Carter, group vice president and general manager of the Toyota Division, expects the $22,000 Prius II to be the most popular model for consumers. “This model provides more than $2,000 added value, including the features most buyers want, at the same price as the current base model,” said Carter.

Standalone options will include an $1,800 Navigation Package, $3,600 Solar Roof Package (includes Navigation Package), and a $4,500 Advanced Technology Package (Navigation Package plus Radar Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System, Lane Keep Assist, and Intelligent Parking Assist).

The Insight is rated at 41mpg combined for city and highway driving, while the larger new Prius is rated at 50 mpg combined and is classified as a mid-size car offering more space than the Honda.

The economy is hurting sales of all vehicles, including the Prius and other hybrid automobiles. Through Q1 of 2009, the Prius sold 24,277 units, a 43% drop from the same quarter last year. The Insight hit the market in March and sold 569 since then.

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Solar panel roof
By Parhel on 4/21/2009 1:31:52 PM , Rating: 2
Standalone options will include an $1,800 Navigation Package, $3,600 Solar Roof Package, and a $4,500 Advanced Technology Package (Navigation Package plus Radar Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System, Lane Keep Assist, and Intelligent Parking Assist).

Wow, the Solar Roof package is really expensive for something that provides almost no actual benefits. I think I'll just crack the windows an inch, thank you very much.

RE: Solar panel roof
By Brandon Hill on 4/21/2009 1:33:53 PM , Rating: 2
I forgot to add that the Solar Roof Package also includes the Navigation Package.

The solar panels powers a cabin ventilation system which keeps the car cool during the summer.

RE: Solar panel roof
By Parhel on 4/21/2009 1:52:18 PM , Rating: 3
That's not too bad then. A few hundred above what a normal sunroof would cost. Thanks for the clarification.

Does the $4500 package also include the solar roof then?

RE: Solar panel roof
By Spuke on 4/21/2009 3:05:49 PM , Rating: 2
That's not too bad then. A few hundred above what a normal sunroof would cost. Thanks for the clarification.
We don't know what the solar roof (not sunroof) would cost if separated from the package. So how do you know it's only a few hundred more than a sunroof? And why are you comparing a solar roof to a sunroof? Apples to asteroid belt.

RE: Solar panel roof
By Parhel on 4/21/2009 4:06:40 PM , Rating: 2
The "solar" roof is basically a moonroof with solar capabilities built in:

I was figuring based on $1000 as a typical option price for a moonroof in most vehicles. This would be $800 more than that, assuming that you were already going to buy the navigation system.

Not a bargain, but I had originally thought the solar roof was $3600 by itself.

RE: Solar panel roof
By Spuke on 4/22/2009 12:27:15 PM , Rating: 2
The "solar" roof is basically a moonroof with solar capabilities built in:
Ah ha!! Thanks for the link. I can see the comparison. In that case, the additional ~$800 doesn't seem out of line.

RE: Solar panel roof
By mmark on 4/21/2009 3:25:28 PM , Rating: 2
No, the $4500 Advanced Technology Package does not include the Solar Roof. You cannot have both options on the 2010 Prius. The $4500 AT Package includes the Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Pre-Collision System, Lane Keep Assist, and Intelligent Parking Assist. Some dealerships already have the new brochures and can give you a lot of information and assistance.

RE: Solar panel roof
By ChuckDriver on 4/22/2009 8:09:45 AM , Rating: 2
The solar panels powers a cabin ventilation system which keeps the car cool during the summer.

The fourth generation Mazda 929 had a sun roof with a solar panel that performed this function as well while the car was parked. It seemed gimmicky then, but on the Prius it seems like it should do more than vent the car for that expense.

It's good news
By kaborka on 4/21/2009 3:09:26 PM , Rating: 2
I need a new car, and I was looking fwd to the Insight. I was disappointed to learn it could not run on battery alone. That rules out future plugin upgrade. The reduced price on the Prius is good news -- I may just get one.

RE: It's good news
By superflex on 4/21/2009 3:41:28 PM , Rating: 1
Take the $1000 savings and get a makeover, because you look like a douchebag driving that ugly-ass car.

RE: It's good news
By austinag on 4/21/2009 4:52:39 PM , Rating: 2
Ahh, it all makes sense now; the car itself looks like a suppository and as you pointed out the driver looks like a douchebag. They really have branded this car better then I thought.

RE: It's good news
By zerocool84 on 4/21/2009 4:10:25 PM , Rating: 1
I hope you drive like 50k miles a year to at least break even to what a cheaper car like a regular Civic/Corolla/Focus will cost you.

RE: It's good news
By Alexstarfire on 4/21/2009 10:12:13 PM , Rating: 2
Congratulations for totally ignoring his entire post. He was looking at a Honda Insight, not a Civic/Corolla/Focus/whatever. As such it really makes sense for him to pick the Prius.

Of course a hybrid car in general can have far better MPG than the EPA estimates while a non-hybrid car can't. Granted that's not much of a reason to consider it, but still. I mean, I'm getting 65+ MPG on my 2007 Prius which is far better than the 50 MPG rated on the 2010 Prius which is supposed to have better FE than my model.

I'm just saying.

RE: It's good news
By Spuke on 4/22/2009 12:38:50 PM , Rating: 2
Of course a hybrid car in general can have far better MPG than the EPA estimates while a non-hybrid car can't.
A non-hybrid can far exceed EPA mileage estimates also. My car is rated at 28 mpg hwy and I've managed as much as 33 mpg. And I've FAR exceeded city mileage. I spent a week in LA for some training and I got 25 mpg. My car is rated at 19 in the city.

RE: It's good news
By Alexstarfire on 4/22/2009 6:08:42 PM , Rating: 2
In what universe is 33 FAR greater than 28? Can a non-hybrid get 70+ MPG? No. Hell, there are some people who can get 90+ MPG. Even the moderate 70+ is still 40% better than the rated 50 MPG the new Prius is.

As I said though, it's not really a good reason to consider a hybrid, but it's certainly an advantage.

RE: It's good news
By Spuke on 4/22/2009 6:48:43 PM , Rating: 2
Can a non-hybrid get 70+ MPG? No. Hell, there are some people who can get 90+ MPG.
70 and 90 mpg? LOL! Right and there are also owners of my car that claim they get 40 mpg too. Doesn't make it so.

RE: It's good news
By Alexstarfire on 4/23/2009 4:22:49 AM , Rating: 2
Well if you cared to actually go read some articles you might be surprised. I'm not saying it's widespread but it's VERY doable. Just go take a look at this chart and tell me it's not possible. Granted these figures can't totally be trusted, but considering this is something that people have to keep track of and update I don't think it's just random people lying to look good.

Plug In?
By Starcub on 4/21/2009 4:52:47 PM , Rating: 2
The Prius was supposed to be a plug-in in 2010. So does this car have it?

RE: Plug In?
By Freezetronius on 4/21/2009 4:59:51 PM , Rating: 2
No, Toyota has stated MANY, MANY times that their cars will not be plug in capable unless you do serious modification

RE: Plug In?
By Starcub on 4/22/2009 5:58:11 PM , Rating: 2
From someone that knows what they are talking about please?

RE: Plug In?
By Alexstarfire on 4/22/2009 6:10:20 PM , Rating: 2
What he said is true. You can check out or if you don't believe him though.

RE: Plug In?
By Starcub on 4/23/2009 12:16:06 PM , Rating: 2

It was supposed to be available in '09, but was pushed back to '10.

RE: Plug In?
By Alexstarfire on 4/23/2009 1:58:46 PM , Rating: 2
And it's been continually pushed back ever since. Supposedly they are supposed to have one late next year... but I think they'll probably cut that one too. I know they are supposed to have one out either late this year or early next year that uses Li-Ion batteries, but I'm sure that'll get pushed back as well.

We've only had modders making plug-in Priuses every since they debuted.... wonder what is taking those damn Japs so long to catch up? ;)

RE: Plug In?
By Starcub on 5/2/2009 6:00:50 PM , Rating: 2
wonder what is taking those damn Japs so long to catch up? ;)

You mean wake up: three guys with hats in hand ran out of gas a while ago.

Not Sure
By SoylentG on 4/21/2009 11:03:12 PM , Rating: 2
Does Prius give you driver feedback? The Insight gives you current gas usage information, and historical gas usage information for how you personally drive. It also has a meter that gives you a visual way to recognize when you're exercising poor driving habits. Toyotas can often compete with Hondas on price, but then you realize that the Toyota you're comparing doesn't have the same features as the Honda, and adding them blows Toyota's lead or minimizes it. Then you figure out actual cost to own, and it's pretty skewed in favor of Honda. That's why I keep buying Honda.

RE: Not Sure
By Freezetronius on 4/22/2009 2:23:32 AM , Rating: 2
It does not.

RE: Not Sure
By SoylentG on 4/22/2009 9:09:00 AM , Rating: 2
Ugh, tried the prius out, no telescoping wheel = bad.

RE: Not Sure
By Starcub on 4/22/2009 5:55:26 PM , Rating: 2
The '07 model I test drove had mpg and charging feedback gages so that you could tell when you were getting the best fuel economy, when the battery was being charged, and how much charge was present. Are these not present in the new Prius?

Honda 4 eva 4 me
By Freezetronius on 4/21/2009 7:40:36 PM , Rating: 2
A picked up my first new car a year ago this month, a beautiful 08 Civic EX-L. I drooled over the new Civics so much that I traded in my 04 V6 Accord Coupe to get it. With 0W-20 and 40 PSI on the tires, I get 41mpg on the highway at 70mph and around 25-27 in city. This is my 5th Honda and they have never let me down. My Civic actually has more features then my 04 Accord did, hows that for getting your money's worth?

I will buy a Prius
By Roy2001 on 4/22/2009 1:31:55 AM , Rating: 2
I am owner of 97 CIVIC and 04 Odessey. Both are trouble free. The only money for repair job is to fix the horn on Civic which was bit by rats. Insight is too small, otherwise I will buy a Honda again.

I have 2 co-workers, one owns a 8 year old BMW 3 series and one owns a 5 series. The 3 owner sent his BMW to dealer quite a few times last year. Later on he bought a Jeep and put his BMW in garage. The 5 owner also has quite some trouble since last year. They both pointed out that the cost for the similar problem cost 2x compare to American/Japanese cars.

By whirabomber on 4/23/2009 2:05:13 PM , Rating: 2
I'll stick with my 09 Chevy Silverado. After watching those insurance crash test videos, doing the math where gas would still have to breech the $4-5/gal range before the price difference would vs a similar size car would make the premium worth. Add the fact that after your 8 year/100,000 warranty that coincides with the life expectancy of the car's batteries owners will have to fork out $5-6k for new batteries that will/will not be environmentally disposed, and the car is mostly made in Japan - which doesn't help the US economy any and Japan isn't much of an environmental super-trooper, and for the same price as a lvl II Toyota I bought my truck, and I won't need to rent a car when 3 other of my buddies deem it necessary to take a trip with me I'll stick with my gas sucking truck.

I can't justify a hybrid yet as I feel smug enough already. Just call me when you need those itty bitty hybrids towed out of that large pothole. I'll be by in my truck.

Stop hybrid dumping!
By borowki2 on 4/21/09, Rating: -1
RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Parhel on 4/21/2009 4:52:47 PM , Rating: 3
Starvation and child slaves in Japan? That's news to me.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By borowki2 on 4/21/2009 8:54:59 PM , Rating: 2
I give up. It's basically impossible to spoof liberals, since they are so full of non-sense and employ such twisted logic that you can't make them sound more ridiculous than they already are. Even when you cite facts from a Weird Al Yankovich song, it's still not obvious to people.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By msomeoneelsez on 4/21/2009 9:09:37 PM , Rating: 1
What... the... hell...

You are spouting off some of the most extreme things I have EVER heard, and you say you are trying to spoof liberals?

And you seem to believe that Weird Al is a good source?


One word comes to mind.


RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Freezetronius on 4/21/2009 5:01:35 PM , Rating: 3
Oh please, spare us internet tough guy routine.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By mmntech on 4/21/09, Rating: 0
RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Alexstarfire on 4/21/2009 10:42:21 PM , Rating: 2
With an 8 year warranty, 10 years in California, I'd say at least 8 years. The battery in my 2002 worked just perfectly up until it got totaled a couple weeks back. And the battery wasn't even taken car of like it should have been. I was not aware at the time that the car should be used at least once every two weeks so the battery doesn't drain too much. My car was sitting in a garage for 2 years with no use. As such if my battery went through that kind of crap and was still fine that short of some defect that all hybrid batteries should be fine for many many years.

And what kind of power do you need to drive on the highway? Even in my old 2002 Prius there was still more than enough power to drive on the highway. Of course I don't have to floor it to accelerate around people or go 100+ MPH the whole time. If you seriously need more power to drive on the highway then I suggest to learn to drive again.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By mindless1 on 4/22/09, Rating: 0
RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Alexstarfire on 4/22/2009 1:59:36 AM , Rating: 2
I never said it was pristine condition over here buddy. I guess you don't really know anything about hybrid batteries though else you'd know that leaving it sitting in a garage for 2 years is worse than using it.

1. Of course, I never said you wouldn't, but many people like to point out that you're going to have to replace it fairly regularly which is just false information. If you have to replace it every 10+ years then it's not really a big deal. Most people don't even keep cars that long anyway. On the other hand there hasn't been a massive surge of people replacing batteries even on the old 1997 model Priuses, the ones only sold in Japan. But hey, if you want to talk about just the US then even the 2000 models have their batteries still working just fine.

And BTW, by "just fine" I mean working as normal.

2. As said before, you obviously know nothing of hybrid batteries. You can go read up on the many stories of cabs going 300,000+ miles on the batteries and they are still working. That is double the warranty mileage even in California.

If you'd like some to do some research on hybrid batteries before you decide to just post trash please go check out or

Your information is about as bad as CNW's "Dust to Dust" report stating that a Hummer was greener than a Prius.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By mindless1 on 4/23/2009 1:03:54 AM , Rating: 2
Pretty crazy for you to try to equate my mention of your lack of evidence as equating to some other person's claim a Hummer is as green.

It is scientific fact that batteries degrade with time and use. Did I write that every single owner will have theirs fail prematurely or anything like that? No.

Instead what I wrote was your observation does not support your conclusion, and further we can't assume battery life for others will be ok because your car happened to be totalled before it needed a new battery.

Please focus on details, when talking about a period of time then switching to yet another factor like 300,000 miles INSTEAD of that period of time and what the capacity will be after that period, you yet again ignore the very real world truth about the eventual cost of battery replacement.

How about you instead go learn a bit about batteries, they are not magic. The technology is bound by the limitations of the components used within it. The battery manufacturers themselves specify these things so if you are trying to claim they are lying, you might want real scientific evidence to counter with because it is not likely the manufacturers themselves will lie about their product being worse in lifespan vs capacity than it really is.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Alexstarfire on 4/23/2009 2:11:41 PM , Rating: 1
I'm sure I probably know far more than you about these batteries, but that isn't the point. As I mentioned before THERE IS NO FUCKING EVIDENCE YET. Most of the batteries aren't even outside the warranty period yet. I went with the mileage because that's the best there is to compare it to.

And I don't know why you keep saying over and over again that batteries degrade over time.... that's so damn basic. Everyone knows, or should at least, know that. But the fact that you keep stating this tells me only one thing.... you have no idea how a hybrid uses the battery. It never uses the full charge, something between like 10% to 20% at most. I don't quite remember the specifics of the Prius but IIRC it trys to keep the charge between like 60% and 80%. Over time it won't be able to. I can't say for certain, but I see no reason why the car can't adjust this value based on the max charge the battery can hold. It have to guess it, but it shouldn't be too difficult. Since a hybrid will NEVER use the full charge of the battery it can conceivably work perfectly fine for far more than a decade. Considering what a hybrid is supposed to do there is really no reason for the car to stop functioning properly until the battery can't hold a charge period... and that's going to be a LONG way down the road.

But hey... show me some proof that these batteries are going to have to be replaced every 8 years, or 10 in California, when the warranty ends then I can shut my trap. But I already know there isn't any evidence either way and all the circumstantial evidence points to the batteries being able to last well outside their warranty period.

And also, there have been some reports that a whole battery may not need to be replaced but the individual cells that have failed. I think this is more referring to problems when a battery just dies because of some defect. I presume the same could be done with a battery going dead as I'm sure the wear isn't going to be perfectly even across the cells. Of course the people at Toyota may have some system that keeps the wear even. It'd be smart if they did.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By usbseawolf2000 on 4/26/2009 4:11:56 AM , Rating: 2

1) Prius' HV battery end of life is when it can only retain 80% of it's original capacity. The pack does not drop dead but you can continue to continue driving by all means.

2) Replacing HV battery pack is not as expensive as you think. Once it is out of the warranty, the pack itself cost less than $2k. It should cost much less 10 years later (once warranty expired). The old pack has $200 bounty fee because Toyota will pay you to get back the Nickel to recycle, which is worth more than that.

HV battery pack is cheaper than an automatic transmission in the non-hybrid car and AT's warranty is about 1/3 of HV pack's warranty. AT do wear out with many moving parts and much shorter warranty. HV battery pack is maintenance free with no moving parts. Your attention should be focused on non-hybrid AT rather than in the Prius HV pack.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By msomeoneelsez on 4/21/2009 9:07:17 PM , Rating: 1
This is the second entirely uninformed comment you have made in a week... You have been rated to the floor twice... Maybe that is incentive to think about what you are going to say, and why it may or may not be good, and actually do that BEFORE posting.

So do tell me this:
Why is it a good idea to help companies who made bad choices, but throw a big "Eff you" at those who are being successful by making the right choices?

* Second, we should put an anti-dumping charge on every foreign hybrid, to bring their prices in line with that of the Volt.

Umm... what? Are you trying to say that foreign automakers bringing competition to the market is a form of them dumping their cars on America? As if they couldn't sell them in Japan too?

* Third, in the event the Japanese try to end run our effort by building their hybrids here, we should levy a special tax on each of their employees to cover the health benefits of non-employees living in their communities who have no insurance.

You have a desire to kill the working man, don't you? Let me quote myself from another post, one that was actually responding to you...
It's a matter of fairness

No, it's a matter of your desire to work less, while being supported by those who work harder. Socialism is what you are talking about, and that has shown time after time to be unsuccessful. There are successes, few and far between... and they are VERY lucky.

Please, read that post as well, because it is very apparent that you need to.

Anyways, back onto topic, socialism (in this example that you give, it is where people are taxed when they are working so that they can support those who don't work) is a bad system because it gives people an incentive NOT to work. In a socialistic system, those who are on welfare don't have to work to get by, they just take their government paid healthcare, unemployment, welfare checks, food stamps, etc. and be a burden to the working class. It is the most backwards system that I know about aside from straight up communism.

Moving on though...
* Fourth, our government should declare our child-labor laws to have universal jurisdiction. This will stop the Japanese'spractice of employing schoolgirls on their factory-floor as slave laborers, whcih give them a distinctly unfair competitive advantage.

How powerful do you think the US is? Even if there were "schoolgirls on their factory-floor" we would have no control over it other than to embargo the product... And in this case, that would extremely hurt the economy, and political relations with Japan. Bad joo-joo.

But if we don't stop the hollowing out of our car industry, pretty soon none of us will have a job. Do you want a future where your kids will be starving like they do in Japan just so you can save a buck now?

We all work in car factories? I know I don't...
I also find it hard to believe that one of the most pervasive and innovative democratic controlled economies in the world has starvation running rampant. Yes, I am referring to Japan.

The future that I want is one where a man is entitled to his own work, or the value produced from it.
I want a future with a flat tax so that there is no more representation without taxation.
I want a future that forces those in poverty to work for their own benefit, with only minimal burden on the working population, instead of taking free education and throwing it away, free foodstamps and buying cheetos and mcdonalds.

I am going to repeat another part of my previous response to you.
Update: The chart above is from the Joint Economic Committe (based on 2006 IRS data), showing the percentages of federal personal income tax paid by different groups of taxpayers: The top 1% of taxpayers pay about 40% of all income taxes, the top 10% pay 71%, and the top 50% pay 97% of all taxes. The bottom 50% pays less than 3% of all income taxes paid.

Need I say more about how America is already too socialistic? We do NOT need more.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Alexstarfire on 4/21/2009 10:46:31 PM , Rating: 2
The only problem I see with the stats on the income tax are that the bottom 50% includes just about every teenager who holds a job. You can't honestly expect them to pay as much as someone who has an actual career. I do agree that it is very lopsided, but not as much as the stats suggest.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By msomeoneelsez on 4/22/2009 12:25:32 AM , Rating: 2
Although I understand why you are bringing that up, but I believe it does not sway the information at all. I know many teenagers in my area who are doing anything and everything they can to move out, and get on welfare. They won't admit that they are going to go onto welfare, that is essentially what they do by removing themselves from the school environment and into the "working world."

It is sad, really...

I do definitely thank you for thinking about what is said instead of just spewing out what others have said. It is a nice change from borowki2 and those like him.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By mindless1 on 4/22/2009 1:09:24 AM , Rating: 2
That's not the sad part, the sad part is these jobs which don't require higher education are mandatory for our quality of life in the US, and yet we aren't willing to pay them a livable wage.

The jobs have to get done, someone has to do them. Whether it be the best, the brightest, the luckiest or whoever that goes on to better jobs, there is still a need to provide at least enough incentive to do these jobs that they are done well.

Instead what do we have? As you wrote, we end up paying into welfare taking away the incentive of working so the work is bad, turnovers are high, it's a lose:lose result for everyone and yet we preserve it because we like to push people to achieve.

Furthering mankind is quite important, but sometimes I wonder if we are losing our humanity in the process.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Alexstarfire on 4/22/2009 2:01:53 AM , Rating: 2
That's why a good bit of those jobs go to teenagers. You know because they don't need to make a living off of it. And I would argue against many of those jobs being "required." I'd bet most of those jobs include the fast food industry and the like which aren't required or necessary at all.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By msomeoneelsez on 4/22/2009 3:19:12 AM , Rating: 2

I would like to add that many of these jobs are low profit as well, so an increase in the wage would either raise unemployment, or require a government subsidy, either of which is bad.

Haha, the government really WOULD be condoning fat people in America :P

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By mindless1 on 4/23/2009 1:22:25 AM , Rating: 2
... and a good bit of them (most actually, if we consider not only minimum wage but instead what I wrote, livable wage) are not going to teenagers.

Many teens, twentysomethings and beyond, do have to make a living. There are a finite number of well paying jobs.

I would argue that most of these jobs are required. Fast food jobs aren't required? Quite wrong, so long as people go to fast food restaurants it is required that someone be there to take orders, cook, clean, etc, etc. Same for any other business, it is required if society deems it important enough to be a good or service where money changes hands.

I think you drastically underestimate the value of these jobs, that you don't know much about industry. Do you have products in your home? Of course you do. Did you know that over 80% of the people involved in producing, delivering, or selling that product to you are in the lower income bracket, and I'm not even talking about sweatshops in China?

The fact is, most jobs do not require a lot of specialized training from a university. Even many of those who graduate from university do not acquire skills they later apply to any significant extent in the jobs they acquire (except arguably English/communication related, but they should have had a firm grasp of that by the end of high school).

Doesn't the poor state of the economy give you even more hints today about the state of the lower class? Record numbers of foreclosures aren't indicative of anything? High levels of debt aren't? It's easy to say people overextended themselves and I do think many do, but someone will let their credit card bill go unpaid before they stop their house payments so the remaining factors are not enough money or well paying jobs left.

Simply putting more kids through college, or them choosing to stay in college where that isn't increasing the number of well paying jobs but is increasing their debt too, is not a solution.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By Alexstarfire on 4/23/2009 2:23:52 PM , Rating: 1
I'm well aware that there are tons of low wage jobs, since I've worked at several myself. There are very few things that are actually needed believe it or not. Restaurants of any kind simply aren't needed, they are a want. Places like PetSmart, and many other specialty stores aren't needed. Places like Bass Pro Shop certainly aren't needed. The list could go on forever. It's not that there aren't certain things these stores provide that are needed. I'm sure we'd all love to keep feeding our pets and fishing, but we don't need the gagillion toys at PetSmart or all the fancy boats at Bass Pro Shop. I'd wager a guess and say that probably half of what companies like UPS and FedEx deliver probably aren't needed by that person. That is a pure guess though, but I think I'm probably underestimating that number.

I would highly argue that the cause of this recession is debt. You know how many of my high school friends are in debt? Well, I suppose I should say were in debt since most have actually been paying them off. Half my friends were. They don't even have living expenses and still couldn't manage it. People just need to learn how to manage their fucking money. You don't need a god damn 3 bedroom house for 1 couple... unless you have kids on the way or something. But even then you don't need to have all the fancy homes. We have two neighborhoods in our town that are $500k+ homes. The average value of the houses surrounding it can't even be $200k. Since they are new it's not surprise no one is really living there. But before this really hit us people were buying up these houses in droves. They continuously spend outside of their income and that is no one's fault but themselves. Naturally this isn't true for EVERYONE, but for a good majority it is. While I can't say this for certain I feel my parents were sorta in that boat. I don't think they overspent, but kept it on the edge. Luckily they have guaranteed jobs so it isn't a problem. That's just my guess though, I don't know what their financial records look like. Could just all be in retirement since they are quickly approaching that date.

RE: Stop hybrid dumping!
By mindless1 on 5/2/2009 1:21:47 AM , Rating: 2
There are multiple reasons someone may want more bedrooms than they need. Suppose they have guests over. Suppose they buy the large home in a nicer neighborhood because they are stuck up, or don't like to deal with people in lower class neighborhoods, or see a home as a good investment they can enjoy at the same time unlike stocks or bonds.

I'm not trying to justify overbuying a house but the typical person isn't buying fancy boats or lots of pet toys. You are right that people have a lot of things they don't need, and certainly that they should have budgeted a bit better including more insulation from job loss by having more savings rather than debt, but at the same time we have to look at the media's influence on the sheep, they are trained to behave this way from early childhood.

Who really needs a cellphone? I bet a lot of people think they do. Regardless, having things you want instead of need to survive is what pushes people to work harder. Take away that incentive and you see more people on welfare which drags down the economy too.

Cheaply build
By SpaceJumper on 4/21/09, Rating: -1
RE: Cheaply build
By Smartless on 4/21/2009 2:18:00 PM , Rating: 2
Define cheaply build or built? I'm not an expert on anything so I usually go by the old rule, if its heavy its probably expensive except I'm told when it comes to airplanes and laptops. lol.

RE: Cheaply build
By Mojo the Monkey on 4/21/2009 2:21:22 PM , Rating: 2
does the interior reflect the early images they were putting out at the auto shows?


RE: Cheaply build
By oopyseohs on 4/22/2009 1:23:28 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, it looks exactly like that.

RE: Cheaply build
By sedluk on 4/21/2009 2:54:05 PM , Rating: 5
I own a Honda and it is true that many Honda parts can look a little cheap. I have also owned Mercedes and BMW's and every parts is machined to perfection. The surprising think is that the Honda is a more reliable car, at least for me. The Honda may not have the same smooth ride and may lack many features, but it is amazing how trouble free they are. My last S Class Mercedes had thousands (and thousands) of dollars of repairs, but if you look under the hood it looks like a piece of art and fine engineering. Go figure.

RE: Cheaply build
By barjebus on 4/21/2009 3:41:14 PM , Rating: 3
Thats what I've heard as well about BMW. My family has always purchased Honda's, so I obviously have quite a bias...however, I was very interested in buying a BMW because I don't really like Honda's designs lately. What I was told by a car dealer friend of mine (and numerous others) was that you need to be able to not only afford the car itself, but the inevitable repairs that you'll need to perform.

As to Honda's, do some regular maintenance repairs every 4 years or so and you'll be fine for a decade or two.

RE: Cheaply build
By Spuke on 4/21/2009 3:43:59 PM , Rating: 2
was that you need to be able to not only afford the car itself, but the inevitable repairs that you'll need to perform.
You do save some money with the "free" maintenance.

RE: Cheaply build
By TomZ on 4/21/2009 4:44:29 PM , Rating: 2
What I was told by a car dealer friend of mine (and numerous others) was that you need to be able to not only afford the car itself, but the inevitable repairs that you'll need to perform.
There may be some truth to that, but there is also some distortion.

First, when you look at quality, in the sense of that things don't go wrong with the car, there is some statistical difference between BMW and Honda, but really in the big picture, both brands have "world class" quality.

In other words, the differences are not as large as you might perceive. Specifically, BMW quality is probably better than you think, and Honda quality is worse than you think. Despite what you might think and have heard, Hondas do also break down and have to go to the shop sometimes, just like all other brands. Honda also has a lot of recalls, like other manufacturers.

Another point is that BMW service and parts do cost more than other brands. The parts obviously have a higher cost since they are produced in lower volumes and are in most cases imported. And the service, well, it's a BMW...

RE: Cheaply build
By Daigain on 4/21/2009 5:11:13 PM , Rating: 1
If you look at statistics, 8.4% of all BMW 3serie cars have a major fault. You might think almost 9 out of 100 cars that is a lot of major faults! But in fact it is the 3rd best car only trailing behind Toyota corolla at 3.4% and aygo at 7.2%.

I think as you get into a little is that it has more to do with perception, there is not that big of a difference between the bigger car brands. But people probably do the calculation in their head that if you paid more for the car it should break down less, well it probably wont. There's also like you touch on the cost once it does breaks that can define how fast you forget what a hassle it was to have to repair it.

RE: Cheaply build
By mindless1 on 4/22/2009 12:24:06 AM , Rating: 2
I have to think these stats are only a small part of the puzzle, as a 3 series buyer may not be the same kind of driver as a Corolla buyer.

In other words, self-fulfilling prophecy. People who are interested in a longer lasting car, buy one which seems more reliable, and because of their interest they are perpetually more mindful of what is required to make the car last a long time.

On the other side of the coin, people looking to spend the least amount possible on whatever gets them from point A to B, are more likely to buy a cheaper Hyundai, GM or Ford, put less thought into longevity and as with the initial price, will want to pay less to maintain it.

Good engineering and parts cost money though, so while spending enough for a luxury class car may not guarantee fewer problems, there may still be a certain cost inherent in a quality car. This factor contradicts my prior paragraph, we might say there are converging factors that determine overall problem rates.

RE: Cheaply build
By Daigain on 4/22/2009 3:08:05 PM , Rating: 2
Very true that, looking at the safest cars in my country not the cars that gets the best EuroNCAP scores are the safest but cars bought by a certain demographic group, mainly middle aged people buying toyotas are the safest.

But on major and minor faults the statistical difference is so huge I don't think it is so easy to contribute the differences to certain buyers. I mean BMW 3 series has 41,3% minor faults while Volvo XC90 has 99% minor fault ratio.

RE: Cheaply build
By Drexial on 4/21/2009 4:46:12 PM , Rating: 2
Speaking from experience and being around them a lot. there are about a dozen flaws in the design. Mostly on the 3 series. But all of them can be prevented pretty cheep. But this is maintenance that usually needs to be done every 120k miles. Most of it can be upgraded for a few bucks extra and it will never fail. most of this is in the cooling system and the rear shock mounts.

How ever if something does fail catastrophically, or if you are in an accident with a BMW over 10 years old (generally no matter how minor) the repairs will be expensive and the car will be totaled out.

RE: Cheaply build
By mindless1 on 4/22/2009 12:28:26 AM , Rating: 2
The same (being totaled) could be said about most cars over 10 years old.

Even a minor fender bender where you rear-end an SUV while braking so the car's front end barely dips under it's bumper, so the front grill, headlight and turn signal assembly is damaged and the bumper plastic and hood corner are bent a little, can total a typical 10 yo car.

RE: Cheaply build
By TomZ on 4/22/2009 1:47:41 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly, especially considering that even a well-kept 10-year old car probably has lost 90% of its original value, which is the value that insurance companies use to cap their losses, i.e., "total the car out."

RE: Cheaply build
By Type2 on 4/21/2009 5:19:57 PM , Rating: 2
That's why after much inner gut-wrenching turmoil I passed on an Audi A6 (and later an A4) and went with a subaru (used cars btw). I want sporty, and I want AWD - and I gotta tell you the interior of that A6 was amazing - but I want my house even more. Sadly, that requires me having a reliable car and being somewhat responsible. That said, the moment I can afford an Audi with spotty reliability and eye popping maintenance bills, well, I'm in.

RE: Cheaply build
By rqle on 4/21/09, Rating: 0
RE: Cheaply build
By Jimspar on 4/21/2009 6:49:24 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, I chose a Fit over the Yaris and the comparable Scion. The materials in the Honda seemed to be of a better grade. Personally I think the Insight is a better looking car and am considering one. To those that think sexuality is based on the car you drive, go f*** yourself. Nuff said?

RE: Cheaply build
By Alexstarfire on 4/21/2009 9:57:27 PM , Rating: 2
And from my experience Toyotas are just fine. Our 3 Toyotas have only had regular maintenance ever, except for our 13+ year old Previa that somehow had a leak in the AC and had to be fixed and refilled, but that's it. We do have a Honda, but it's only about 6 months old so I can't say much about it yet. Seems to be the same as all our Toyotas though. It's only had oil changes so far.

RE: Cheaply build
By mindless1 on 4/22/2009 12:31:14 AM , Rating: 2
What about size:cost ratio, isn't a Corolla larger than a Civic, A Camry larger than an Accord?

RE: Cheaply build
By Spuke on 4/22/2009 12:19:40 PM , Rating: 2
What about size:cost ratio, isn't a Corolla larger than a Civic, A Camry larger than an Accord?
Roughly the same size. Not enough to make a difference anyways.

RE: Cheaply build
By mindless1 on 4/23/2009 12:46:31 AM , Rating: 2
If the slightly smaller size allows a $100 cost reduction that is then put into interior finishing, that could be enough to make a difference.

RE: Cheaply build
By theoflow on 4/21/2009 3:58:40 PM , Rating: 3

My co-worker has a Prius and when I first sat in it, it actually felt like the interior panels are made out of recycled paper.

The dash and the top of the door panels feels super thin and have a sandpaper-ish feel to them. I also feel that the dash is really not that great and there isn't enough design put into it with the displays coming from an old pontiac digital gauges.

HOWEVER, I'm pretty sure the usage of those materials cuts down quite a bit on weight.

As for Honda's interior materials (I have a civic) just keep it clean and you'll be fine. I notice that some of the plastics are losing their 'rubber-ish' texture, but then again I smoke so all that tar is starting to stick. Steering wheel is still nice though.

I'm also a big fan of the two-tiered dash assembly. It really does make the intake of information easier.

RE: Cheaply build
By Samus on 4/21/2009 4:13:31 PM , Rating: 1
I would take a Honda over a Toyota. Toyota's are the most boring cars on the planet. However, neither are cheaply built. Every Toyota Yaris and Honda Fit I've come across has class leading build quality. The panels fit together tightly with small assembly gaps, there are no squeeks and creeks, the interior is soft plush material (although usually quite ugly) and they remain mechanically sound for years.

So define cheap? You want cheap then look as a Mexican-built Focus or Jetta from the late 90's.

RE: Cheaply build
By Freezetronius on 4/21/2009 5:04:15 PM , Rating: 4
With that logic, you can also tell if tires are good if you kick them.


RE: Cheaply build
By mindless1 on 4/22/2009 12:34:54 AM , Rating: 2
You have it backwards, you may not be able to tell a car is good by looking under it, but you may in fact be able to tell tires are bad by kicking them (play in bearing). Cheap construction can be seen in many cases, but we don't have specifics to go by what led to the conclusion.

RE: Cheaply build
By Spuke on 4/22/2009 12:23:23 PM , Rating: 2
but you may in fact be able to tell tires are bad by kicking them (play in bearing).
You're not going to be able to move a tire by kicking it with 25% of a typical cars 3000+ lbs sitting on it. Kicking tires is silly. Besides, you are more apt to have a bad alignment causing premature wear on a tire than bad bearings nowadays.

RE: Cheaply build
By mindless1 on 4/23/2009 12:48:50 AM , Rating: 2
False. You can in fact notice bearing wear by the wheel moving from grabbing both sides and pushing/pulling, or kicking it.

I was not talking about premature wear from the bearing or alignment.

Granted, most cars have no wheel bearing problems, so I wouldn't expect that to seem obvious, but taken part by part most cars have most parts working fine but the goal is to find the ones that aren't fine.

It's hard not to look like a homo in these things
By TA152H on 4/21/09, Rating: -1
By Alexstarfire on 4/21/2009 10:31:07 PM , Rating: 3
And what do you like? GMCs? If you need an expensive/stylish car to make you feel like a man then you must be one insecure person. If that floats your boat then that's your own decision, but to say that Toyotas, Hondas, BMWs, etc.. are crap is just a plain lie.

Never seen or heard of any Toyota or Honda that's even had a rust problem. We don't live near the sea/ocean or where it snows a lot so it could just be salt that's doing all the damage. Steps can be taken to prevent most of that from happening though. And the batteries in a hybrid... not an issue. Toyota has an 8 year/100,000 mile warranty on the battery, 10 year/ 150,000 mile warranty in California. The battery in my old 2002 Prius was fine up until it got totaled a couple weeks back.

Ohh and diesel prices are actually quite close to gas prices now, even in the US. Not sure if it'll stay that way, but that's the way it is right now.

By mindless1 on 4/22/2009 12:45:20 AM , Rating: 1
If life is not full of art and beauty, what is the point? One need not be insecure to appreciate the finer things in life even if that doesn't mean caviar and mercedes, even without these the world is a better place because of individual expression, and style.

It might even be said that an insecure person is one who is afraid to display their style in cars as well as other areas of life because they don't want to attract attention.

The batteries are certainly an issue, because you have to drive the car that long to recoup the higher cost per the car you're getting, and if the all too often cited benefit of higher resale value is included in car value, you must consider battery replacement as a cost of maintenance because if it's a good car it should last more than 8 years. Not everyone totals their car within 8 years regardless of whose fault it was.

If you'd rather drive a Prius, great then that they make them, that is your subjective decision yet other people have other priorities that could easily make them claim some other car is crap from their perspective.

By tmouse on 4/22/2009 8:15:13 AM , Rating: 3
Yes but if you define your sexuality by the car you drive that's purely insecurity; not an appreciation of the finer things in life.

By Spuke on 4/22/2009 2:19:34 PM , Rating: 1
Yes but if you define your sexuality by the car you drive that's purely insecurity
There are many things that people use to determine their sexuality. If someone chooses to include cars then that's fine by me. And it may be insecurity but what other things are we insecure about that have nothing to do with cars?

In short, I could care less what he uses to determine his sexuality and I could care less if he's insecure because most of us here have a plank or two in our own eyes.

By mindless1 on 4/23/2009 12:57:17 AM , Rating: 2
Apples and oranges.

The thing does not define the sexuality, the sexuality causes different choices.

Men may not define their sexuality by not wearing pink, but generally their sexual identity as well as cultural stereotypes will result in not many men choosing to wear pink, beyond a dress shirt if that.

Do you not accept that in healthy people their gender will cause them to make different choices? Is not a car a choice?

I would expect that studies have also shown that even within the same sex, things like testosterone levels effect the choices men make, and it would be reasonable to think testosterone plays a role in sexuality.

The old cliche' that a car is a substitute for lack of something else can be true, but it can as easily be people trying to find some reason to insult others, trying to feel better about themselves because they have a pathetic car.

Smart, healthy, intelligent people simply choose better cars. Perhaps I should mention money too, this group of people tends to have more money on average so we might say others would buy the nicer cars too if they could afford to.

By tmouse on 4/23/2009 7:59:57 AM , Rating: 2
Please, let's not try to place the comment of the OP in a "purely intellectual" rarified atmosphere. This comment is clearly not one of sexual dimorphic choice but an insulting, biased, homophobic statement. What about a Prius can even be remotely connected to being a homosexual? Its shape? Many cars are fugly; that's somewhat of the result of trying to reach a compromise between aerodynamics and mass production. I do not own one, nor for that matter am I gay but I, for one, cannot see how one would "look like a homo if you're driving one of these things". My statement was directed directly at the OP, I find it difficult to believe any rational person reading that comment could not see gross sexual insecurity in the commenter. Are they saying they would change their sexual preference by driving one? Is the opinion of others that crucial that one HAS to constantly "prove" their sexuality by common things like transportation? I'm not saying society does not stereotype items like cars as being "manly" like big honking muscle cars. But things do change. 10 years ago auto racing like Nascar was considered, by most a "mans" sport now there are many women who follow it with no stigma of being "manly". An, albeit, quick scan of Pubmed does not show any studies supporting your conjecture on a correlation between testosterone and purchase decisions. A discussion with some of my colleagues in the department of psychiatry resulted in an almost unanimous agreement that these decisions are almost exclusively sociologically driven. As a matter of fact many men get bigger cars as they get older, part of this is due to the ability to have more disposable income but the biological facts are that a man's testosterone level begins to drop around 19. I have several cars ranging from a conservative car for my 130 mile daily commute to a high end sports car so this was not a case of "trying to find some reason to insult others, trying to feel better about themselves because they have a pathetic car". I'm surprised that you would feel that a person who would express his dislike for a car model with the comment "I'm not gay - My ass is!" is a Smart, healthy, intelligent person.

By Alexstarfire on 4/23/2009 4:29:50 AM , Rating: 2
I'm not saying that cars will be totaled within 8 years, just that mine happened to be.

You can't really say anything about the batteries as of yet since 98%, if not more, of them have not needed to be replaced yet. But yes, the cost is quite large if they do need to be replaced.

By usbseawolf2000 on 4/26/2009 12:39:29 PM , Rating: 2

"The batteries are certainly an issue, because you have to drive the car that long to recoup the higher cost per the car you're getting , and if the all too often cited benefit of higher resale value is included in car value, you must consider battery replacement as a cost of maintenance because if it's a good car it should last more than 8 years."

Recoup the cost for tons hybrid premium features? Hybrid premium features comes with premium price. It is a steal to have so many new features for a few extra grand!

When do you recoup V6 premium price? How about Leather? How about automatic transmission? I could go on and on but the answer is never. Just because hybrid-only premium features save gas and money, most "keyboard hybrid experts" are not aware of the premium features.

I bet you've never own or driven a FULL hybrid. Here is a list off my head:

- No need to warm up the car. Thermo bottle retain heat from the last shutdown.
- Instant torque make the car feel well connected to the road. No more over-accelerating and force you to control the speed with brakes
- The Brake pad will last the life of the car
- Instant power response makes highway passing a pleasure. No need to wait for the downshift.
- 8" touch screen is a pleasure to use with backup camera
- Smart Key unlocks the door at the moment you grab the door handle. Enter the car and press the Start button. When you leave, press the button on the door to lock. No need to take out the key.
- Navigation with bluetooth connection the cell phones
- Open garage door with a press of button on the rear view mirror (HomeLink)
- "Energy Star" quiet and smart electric A/C. This smart A/C has 5 sensors (temp, solar, humidity, etc..)
- Priceless silence when the engine shuts down.
- Priceless feel of accelerating with no gas engine noise (EV mode)
- Instant brake response even after 94k miles, without added pedal travel (Thanks to regen braking)

Some of the features I listed are also available in Luxury cars. I included them because economy cars without those features were used to compare price with Prius.

HV battery has 3-4 times longer warranty than gasoline engine or automatic transmission. When the car is 10 years old or 150,000 miles, do you recoup the cost by replacing with a new engine or tranny? The question you are asking about the HV battery does not make much sense.

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